Look at your shoes scattered on the floor or stacked in rows in the closet. If you’re like most of us, there are many materials, finishes, and colors available. Gone are the days when all shoes were made from black or brown leather.
But how do you keep them and last a little longer? With a few accessories and a few simple steps, you can clean any type of footwear, including sneakers.
Cloth shoes can be strappy sandals, sneakers, heels, or ballerinas. Regardless of the cut, the fabric will get dirty over time.
There is a trick on the Internet to throw cloth shoes in the washing machine. This is a bad idea, as some have leather lining and almost all shoes are glued with glue that does not hold all the water.
Instead, clean the textile surfaces of your shoes by hand with dish soap, warm water, an old toothbrush, and paper towels.
- Wipe the cloth with a dry paper towel to remove loose surfaces.
- In a small bowl, mix one teaspoon of dish soap with two cups of warm water.
- Dip the toothbrush in soapy water, a small portion at a time, and gently wipe the tissue. Do not wet yourself. Work with the fibers of the fabric and run them through the shoes to maintain a uniform color and not stain.
- Dry all shoes with a paper towel dampened with clean water to remove soap residue. It may take several towels to “rinse” your shoes.
- Pat dry with paper towels and air dry away from direct heat and sunlight. Keep your shoes in good condition by holding your toes or heels with dry paper towels until they are completely dry.
Do not use the wet cleaning method on velvet shoes. Instead, brush with a soft bristle brush to remove lint and remove clean stains with a dry cleaning solvent.
Faux Leather Shoes & Leather, Patent Leather
To remove leather, varnish, or synthetic leather shoes, start by staining a cloth dampened in the same amount of cold water and pure white vinegar. It is especially good for removing salty stains in winter. Let the shoe dry completely.
Use real nail polish remover to remove real leather shoes and follow the instructions. If you don’t have polish to match today’s white sneakers or rainbow colors, moisten a soft cloth with water and dip it in baking soda. Gently wipe the worn area and remove any residue with a clean cloth. Let dry and dry with a clean cloth.
If the patent leather and leatherette shoes are scratched, clean them with a drop of petroleum jelly and polish them with a soft cloth. Restore shine with a glass cleaner and buff with a soft cloth.
Sheepskin Shoes & Suede, NuBuck
The secret is to keep the best side of the suede or to clean it regularly. Surfaces should be as dry as possible and cleaned with a soft brush after each use to remove dust and dirt. Remove stains as soon as possible.
Stains and scratches: Gently scrub the lint with an eraser and then a brush.
Grease stains: Sprinkle baby powder or cornstarch over this area for oil. Let the powder sit on the stain for at least an hour and then remove the powder. Repeat this step until all the oil is absorbed, then lift the feathers while brushing.
Humid places: dry with paper towels or a cloth to absorb moisture. Let the shoe dry completely, away from direct heat. Brush straight hair.
Sheepskin boots usually have a dirtier sheepskin lining than the exterior. To control mold and odor, periodically clean the inside of the shoe with a cloth dampened with disinfectant (Lysol) and water. Wait 24 hours for the shoe to dry before wearing.
Cork Wedges & Rope
After cleaning your shoe or leather, it’s time to talk about the cork or rope sole.
Combine a solution with four cups of warm water, a quarter cup of pure white vinegar, and a teaspoon of liquid laundry detergent. Prepare a small area one by one and clean the surfaces with a brush or an old cloth. When working with the rope harness, work in one direction only to avoid wear on the rope.
When everything is clean, wipe them with a cloth dampened with clean water to remove any soap residue and let your shoes air dry.
Most tennis shoes and shoes can be played in the washing machine and cleaned with a good detergent with good properties, such as Persil or Tide. Remove all bottoms and ties and wash separately. Remove excess dirt and stubborn stains with a stain remover before placing the shoe in the towel pack.
The air is always dry. NEVER expose your running shoes to excessive heat from the dryer.
To control odor and mold growth, clean the soles with disinfectant before reversing or replacing them with new insoles.