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A Cleaner World Blog

Tips for Caring for Men’s Shoes

My husband and my dad are alike and different in so many ways. Here’s a perfect example: they are both extremely hard on shoes yet I recall from my childhood seeing my dad wiping, brushing, polishing, and shining his shoes, and he still provides excellent care for his shoes to this day. I never see him wearing a scuffed up, beat up pair of shoes. Matt, on the other hand, wears his shoes until they nearly fall apart, rarely providing maintenance for them, then purchases new ones.

There’s something about a pair of shoes that completes an ensemble and wearing scuffed up shoes doesn’t convey that put together, polished look that we all love. So here are a few tips to help you keep your shoes in tip-top condition, always:

  1. Invest in or put together a proper shoe kit. Stock it with things like suede soap and leather cleaner, shoe polish in multiple colors plus applicators, a suede brush, buffing brushes, and a soft cloth.
  2. When you bring home a new pair of shoes, start with a little preventative maintenance. For instance, polish your new leather shoes before you even wear them, and polish them often, especially if you are going to wear them out in bad weather. Treat new suede shoes with a protective spray that repels water, salt, and mud, and brush them often. Before you wear new dress shoes, have a cobbler place a rubber sole on the bottom to protect the soles but to also provide traction.
  3. Never put your shoes away dirty or wet. With leather shoes, wipe off dirt, mud, and salt with a damp sponge or soft brush. If they get wet, stuff them with newspaper and allow them to completely dry. Once dry, polish and buff. To remove dirt and mud from suede shoes, gently brush them with a brush recommended for caring for suede shoes. Never wash canvas shoes or tennis shoes in the washing machine. Instead, wash the rubber soles on the outside with a damp sponge, and address the canvas portion by using a damp cloth. Allow them to dry away from heat sources and away from direct sunlight.
  4. Properly store your shoes. Never just throw your shoes in the bottom of your closet. Instead, place them on shoe shelves, hang them in shoe racks, or keep them in their original boxes.

With just a little preventative maintenance and care, your shoes will both look nicer, helping you portray a more professional image, and last longer. Best of all, with the upfront investment of the shoe kit and a little bit of time, you’ll save money by not having to purchase new shoes quite as often.

men's dress shoes
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