How To Maintain Leather Footwear

June 18th, 2011  |  Published in TIPS

Clean and Condition: Cleaning, conditioning, polishing and protecting your leather shoes can make them last for years. Shoe cleaners come in gels, foams, sprays, liquids and creams. Many leather cleaners come with an applicator top, or you can use a soft shoe brush to aid in removing dirt from the surface of the shoe. Rub small amounts of conditioner into the shoe, until the entire shoe has been covered with conditioner. After a couple of minutes, wipe any remaining conditioner off the shoes, as the leather will only absorb what it can.

Well Polished: Apply the polish first to a small, less eye-catching area of the shoe to test and be sure the color is right.  If there is not much difference in the shades then you can go ahead and polish the rest of the area. Castor oil is also useful for waterproofing the underneath of leather soles. To freshen up an old pair of shoes buy new laces, perhaps in a contrasting color. Do not polish very frequently also.

Store well: Create special storage for special shoes. If you have a pair of good dress shoes that you only wear with your good suit, keep them free of dust by storing them in a box. Maintain the shape of the toe of softer shoes by packing them loosely with clean tissue. Or, use a card board, wood or plastic shape designed for this purpose. It’s a good idea to invest in a shoe closet for your best pair. For boots that you take out only during winters it is best to store them in a linen bag so that they do not accumulate dirt.

Leather care: To clean patent leather shoes rub in petroleum jelly and leave for a while to soak in, the buff up with a soft clean cloth. This will not only keep them shiny but also prevent them from cracking. Also never wrap them in a bag that is moist. The place where you keep your shoes is also important. Be sure that the place will not be such that will allow moss or mildew to grow on your shoes if kept for long.

Do not pile: Don’t pile the shoes on top of each other, as that might leave dirt or marks on your shoes. Always arrange them neatly in rows so that the shape of the shoes is not spoilt. Also if you want to wipe expensive shoes just dab a little mild fabric cleanser and just wipe it over your pair to remove any dirt stains.


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