Do I have to wash my hands after touching shoe uppers, or only the soles, and what kind of washing is required, a ritual washing, or just a quick rinsing?


The consensus of poskim (though there are minority opinions with various other approaches) is that one must wash their hands after touching shoes that have been worn before. There is no distinction made between where on the shoe you touch. Since the issue here is one of “cleanliness” you do not need to wash 3 times back and forth like we do for ruach rah. We have heard in the name of the Chazon Ish that he held you can be lenient not to wash after just touching shoelaces1)Mishneh Brurah 128:62 and 4:41.

References   [ + ]

1. Mishneh Brurah 128:62 and 4:41