Wear Shoes In The House? [Yes Or No]

Shoes Inside house

I grew up in an Asian home all my life. I know how it feels when an Asian hostess stares at you like they are about to suck your soul for just wearing a shoe indoors. People who don’t understand this will probably be those who are used to wear their shoes inside which is completely fine but there are plenty of reservations.

Wearing shoes in the house can track germs inside, slowly damage carpet and flooring, be unhealthy for your feet, yet wearing shoes inside aid some with foot support. Many cultures remove shoes before going into their homes for cleanliness and floor protection, but in the US most people take their shoes off after they walk inside.

This may seem bland to some but it is really important to know what could be the possible risks of wearing shoes inside the house. Besides we all want our normal outdoorsy lives pre-pandemic times, right?

Does Wearing Shoes Inside A Good Thing?

Many people would probably answer that with a yes.

First, it is indeed a hassle to take of your shoes especially during the wintertime. The Outdoor was very cold and you would want to go straight inside and have some tea and just talk to your people, right? That would be a great pleasure since hanging out seems like a great idea.

Second, you can always wipe your shoes off before entering the house, so no dirt or debris gets inside.

Third, shoes are made to protect our feet. So what if we take them off then our feet won’t be protected. If you were a fire walker you might decide that shoes are important to wear to keep your feet extra protected. They believe our feet are the most delicate and precious part of our body and we should always protect them.

When we are choosing to keep our shoes on inside to protect them from dirt and germs, we may be actually spreading dirt and germ. That’s why some people say no to shoes in the house.

Some people are unsure about wearing shoes inside because of the current pandemic. They might feel that shoes can carry the virus and be harmful if worn inside the house.

Although shoes can support feet and some people may need that, the healthiest thing to do might be not to wear shoes inside. According to Huck.psu.edu “It is possible to spread the coronavirus with your shoes. If you’re walking in a common area, particularly indoors, there’s a chance someone sneezed or coughed and gravity sent their respiratory droplets to the floor.”

Removing Shoe As A Tradition

Removing Shoes A Tradition

Removing shoes to some cultures is a very important tradition. As I’ve said earlier I grew up in a Southeast Asian culture where we remove our shoes as a hygienic habit.

My mom gets furious when she discovered that someone stepped a shoe inside our home. She would directly pick up cleaning materials and mop the floor again to make sure the possibility of bacterial contact was eliminated

Some people outside this culture would probably be very curious to find how particular every Asian is about this particular cultural norm.

I remember watching a movie where this American guy directs a story about this half-Korean family who was the main character and later on became her girlfriend (I need to stop watching romantic movies). Anyway, call it a cultural thing but removing shoes can be very beneficial.

It has been a long tradition in Japan and Korea where there are small entryways before you enter that are called “genkan“and “hyeon gwan. This space in their house is culturally designed for them and their visitors to remove their shoes and deposit them, exactly just like jackets.

According to a 2008 Study by the University of Arizona, there about 66 million organisms live in our shoes. They found out that nine different types of bacteria live in people’s shoes. The most alarming part is that these types of bacteria can cause infections in our stomachs, eyes, and lungs.

What’s On Your Sole?

What's On Your Sole

We almost do every possible thing wearing our shoes and soles can be contaminated with anything that lurks outside. We may not notice this but removing your shoes is actually a life-saving habit.

According to studies, our shoes can get dirtier than a toilet bowl. They observed and experimented with 10 people and they wear a brand-new pair of shoes for two weeks until their new kicks were sampled for bacteria.

The outer surface of the shoes had an average of 421,000 bacteria. The study found 2,887 on the inside. They found that fecal bacteria appeared on 96% of the shoes. 

Possible Risks Of Wearing Shoes In The House

As I have discussed earlier our shoes can carry different kinds of bacterias that can make anyone or everyone who lives in that house sick for days or even a life-long battle of sickness. The risks are high when it comes to failing to do this kind of basic hygiene habit.

That is why we should practice how to avoid it before it gets worse. My opinion is that this world needs more people who can be a good example of doing things that show healthy habits with how to avoid germs on shoes.

When To Wear Shoes In The House

Shoes In The House

If you have weak feet and your doctor says you need foot support whenever you walk, then you will most likely need to wear your shoes in the house.

Some people have two pairs of shoes. Outdoor shoes and inside shoes. Sometimes the inside shoes are just slippers of something comfortable that they never bring outside.

If it’s a cold day then you might want to wear your warm slippers inside to stay warm. If you go outside with your slipper and walk in the dirt, this should not be a problem because most dirt doesn’t contain harmful organisms.

Just remember once you start walking in places that other people are walking the spread of harmful germs could occur and those slippers are probably not clean anymore.

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Wearing Shoes In The House


  1. Pure convenience
  2. Will never ruin your outfit
  3. Foot support
  4. Keep warm
  5. Keep feet protected if dirty or sharp object in the house


  1. Posibility of bacterial contamination
  2. Spread germ in the house
  3. Slow wear and tear on carpet and flooring
  4. Feet can’t breathe. May cause athlete’s foot.
  5. Toes can’t spread out. Foot gets weaker.

Final Thoughts

There are some reasons you might wear your shoes in the house, but if you want to keep dirt to a minimum and prevent the spread of anything harmful, taking off your shoes before you go in the house is a healthy practice.

I like to walk inside my house barefoot all the time. My next step could be taking off my shoes before I go inside. Do you have a system to prevent dirt and germs from getting inside your house?

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