Shoe Cleaning Tips: How to Care For Your Shoes | Style Guide Skip to main content

Protect Your Shoes With Our Shoe Cleaning Tips

A fine pair of leather shoes looks great straight-out-of-the-box and then life gets in the way and they become scuffed, dirty, and dull. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Following these simple steps will keep your new shoes looking great for years to come or will be able to restore your old favorites to their original luster.

The featured image is a variety of shoe care products.

Leather

How to clean dress shoes? Regular polishing is the best way to keep fine leather shoes looking their best. First, clean off any dirt with a damp cotton cloth. Once they’re dry, apply a thin even coat of shoe polish with the sponge. Use either a neutral color or one that matches the color of your shoe.

When it comes to how to shine shoes, everyone seems to have their own shoe shining tips. No matter who you listen to, make sure to work the polish in evenly with the polishing brush and then use the buffing brush until you achieve the shine you want. On brogue shoes, use a toothpick to remove excess shoe cream from the perforations. And then finish it off with the soft cotton cloth.

To better protect your shoes from the elements, use leather protector spray.

Suede

Everyone loves suede shoes, but they do require a bit of TLC. We recommend that you protect them with a quality waterproof spray before the first wearing. Suede/Nubuck protector is specifically designed to shield your shoes from the weather, spills, and stains. Make sure to let them dry overnight before applying the waterproof spray.

If you do get the occasional spot, don’t worry, shoe cleaner is designed to clean, condition, and maintain the color of your shoe. Remember to clean off any excess dirt first using a soft-bristled brush. After cleaning use another brush to re-fluff the suede.

Drying

Sometimes getting the shoe wet is unavoidable. If this happens, don’t try to dry the shoes with a blow dryer or by placing them next to a heating element. This can crack leather and cause further damage to other materials like suede and knit textiles. Let them dry out naturally. You can help the process by stuffing the shoes with newspaper to absorb excess water. But do not use cedar shoe trees, they are not designed to absorb excessive amounts of moisture.

Buy a Shoe Horn

A shoe horn helps keep the back of your shoe from creasing which leads to a deterioration of the leather. There’s a variety of shoe horns in the marketplace and they all do the same thing. Small shoe horns are compact and work well when traveling because of their size. Larger shoe horns allow for an easier grip since you can use them while sitting or standing, and still achieve the same ease-in effect.

Use Cedar Shoe Trees

Grandmothers kept their fine linen in a cedar chest for a reason. They knew that cedar naturally absorbs moisture, repels insects, and reduces odor. Along with proper cleaning, a cedar shoe tree is the best ways to conserve your shoes. Everyone’s feet perspire, and that moisture can cause the leather to deteriorate. Cedar naturally absorbs this moisture and also has a fresh aroma that eliminates any odor. When shoes aren’t being worn, they quickly lose their shape. A shoe tree holds the shape of your shoes and keeps them from creasing and cracking. Additionally, if a shoe is not worn for a long period of time it can actually shrink – a shoe tree prevents this.

For the right tools and the best shoe shine kits for your shoes, check out our shoe care products.

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