The Great Shoe Debate: Should You Wear Shoes Indoors?

The Great Shoe Debate: To Wear or Not To Wear Indoors?


The topic of wearing shoes indoors has been a divisive one for as long as most of us can remember. While cultural background, personal preference and health concerns feature as the main reasons people either take their shoes off indoors or wear them in the house, it appears that the debate is far from over.

Some people simply cannot bear the thought of bringing the dirt and grime from outside into their pristine homes. As one European writer shared, not only did his culture dictate a “no-shoe” policy, but also that one should not bring school or outdoor clothes, especially jeans, into the bedroom. Another person shared that they avoid stepping on unfamiliar floors altogether as it was discouraged in their country.

On the other hand, those who wear their shoes indoors argue that it is simply too much of a hassle to take them off every time they enter or exit the house. Moreover, in some parts of the world, wearing shoes inside is considered a norm, which people may be reluctant to challenge.

Some households have found their unique solutions to this topic. Some have a “shoes off” rule in the entrance area and a “shoes on” rule for the rest of the house. Others provide guests with slippers or indoor shoes, while some guests BYO (bring your own).

Furthermore, the debate on whether or not to wear shoes inside may have implications for our health. While some argue that outdoor shoes can track dirt and germs into the house, others point out that unless you’re walking outside in anything extremely dangerous like pet or human excrement, the germs are probably not going to be a huge problem.

However, regardless of where you stand on this debate, the most important thing is to respect the rules of the household, and, if in doubt, ask the host what they would prefer.

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