Care of leather shoes is not just about making your shoes look good. It's also about preserving and adding to the life of your new lovely shoes. Look at it as though you're protecting your investment, or what could be a future collectible. While some people are content to throw on a coat of shoe polish when their shoes start to look shabby, to really protect your leather shoes and keep them looking their best, there are four steps to follow.
- Preserve or Weatherproof
Use a natural condition that is absorbed into the material of the shoe, as opposed to a synthetic conditioner that sits on top of the surface.
When it comes to cleaning suede shoes, the old adage "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" definitely applies.
Treating your suede or nubuck shoes with a protective spray or finish will help to repel water and prevent stains. If that ship has already sailed, at least you'll know for future reference to protect before wearing.
In the meantime, here are some tips for cleaning suede shoes and boots after stains have already set.
- Remember to first test any treatment or product on a small inconspicuous area before tackling a large stain.
- For heavy stains on suede shoes, use a suede cleaning block (also called a suede eraser). These products will crumble as you rub them across the surface of the footwear, and are great for removing even deeply embedded dirt.
- After cleaning, the nap of your suede can be restored by using a suede brush. The bristles of suede brushes are usually made from brass, and often you can find both the cleaning block and the brush in one kit.