History of Removing Shoes

History of removing shoes hero image

The act of removing shoes when entering ones’ living space has existed for thousands of years. The obvious reason is that it keeps the interior cleaner. This is something that is still practiced today, all around the world.  Here are a few cultures that practice it in one way or another and why you should too.


This is the first one that probably comes to mind. Asian cultures are most known for this practice of removing their shoes. In Japan, you not only remove your shoes at the entrance of a home but also in restaurants, work, and school. Nearly every Asian culture has this tradition. The reason being is they use the floor for a lot more than just walking; they use it to sit and to sleep. Think about it, would you walk on your bed with muddy shoes?


In countries like Italy, France, and Spain they remove their shoes before walking on a wooden floor. It preserves the wood. No dirt to wear down the wood or scratch it.


It isn’t a strict tradition, but many families follow the policy of removing shoes as well. In certain parts of a synagogue, a Rabbi is not permitted to wear shoes.


Though not a universal tradition, it is extremely common to remove shoes before entering a home.


Removing shoes at the door where we live, unfortunately, is known to be uncommon.

Shoes go through many filthy places; sidewalks, public restrooms, stores, etcetera to name a few. Wearing your shoes through the house means that you’re bringing all that inside. Subjecting your family, and especially small children to all that dirt, grime, and pollution. These countries certainly have the right idea, they value a clean home, or at least have specific reasons for taking shoes off.

Let’s turn it into a tradition, let’s all start taking our shoes off in our homes. Our homes will be cleaner, our families will be healthier, our flooring will last longer too.

If you have been wearing your shoes indoors and would like to adopt this tradition, we recommend having your carpets cleaned to kick start this new habit. Click here to learn more about our carpet cleaning services.

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