Shoe Care Tips & Tricks
As Marilyn Monroe famously said, “Give a girl the right shoes, and she can conquer the world.” In this week’s blog, I want to inspire you to take great care of your kicks. Believe me; they will thank you for it.
We all know your shoes can make or break your outfit. Just like a great handbag, shoes are an investment for the savviest of fashionistas. So whether your latest purchase are loafers, pumps, wedges or lace ups, make sure you treat your shoes with the attention and care they deserve. And you’ll be wearing them for years to come.
Become a sole sister
Rule number one is to take great care of your soles & heels. You can get your soles re-done with your local cobbler as soon as you see signs of wear and tear. Cobbled streets, rough bitumen and a girls night out on the dancefloor can have immediate effects on your soles and heels. Don’t let your stilettos or pumps wear down to the metal structure beneath the leather. Get the caps replaced regularly before the metal becomes exposed.
Waterproof & Weatherproof
Make sure you waterproof your leather, canvas, suede and nubuck shoes with spray-on water repellent. Just spray 15-30cm from the shoe and leave to dry overnight. Repeat every couple of months.
Leather polish and conditioner is like moisturiser for your shoes. It’ll help prevent cracking, wrinkling, fading and flaking. Depending on how often you wear your shoes, leather polishing should become a regularly routine. You only need to dab a small amount of leather polish or conditioner on a clean, dry cloth and work in a circular motion across your shoes. Remove excess polish with a fresh, clean cloth and buff with a pair of stockings until you can see no smudges or residual marks. Beeswax polish is great for protecting and nourishing your leather. When it comes to colour matching, your local cobbler should have a range of pots in different colours and shades to suit but if not, choose a transparent polish to hydrate the leather.
Suede & Nubuck
When it comes to nubuck and suede, these fabrics are incredibly delicate. Invest in a good brush with soft bristles to lift dirt, and use a suede eraser to get rid of smudges. Always remove laces before brushing to lift all the dirt trapped between the edges. We love Terre De Sommieres as a natural, dry stain remover. Alternatively, a more affordable option is using steam and a small amount of white vinegar and water on a nail brush to lift stains and dirt. Dab dry with a clean cloth, never rub and don’t brush too vigorously.
To preserve the gloss on patent leather sandals and wedges, smooth a small amount of Vaseline directly to the leather. Baby wipes also work a treat for patent leather wedges and canvas sneakers also. Baby wipes are gentle enough to use after each wear as they lift dirt, remove smells and leave no residual soap. No need to put your sneakers in the washing machine like your Mum used to do, just invest in some baby wipes.
Ideally, it’s great to invest in a quality shoe tree to keep your shoes in best condition while you’re not wearing them. Unfinished cedar soaks up residual moisture or odour, and the shape of the shoe tree means your shoes will not crease or wrinkle. If you don’t want to opt for a shoe tree, keep the boxes and felt bags your shoes were purchased in and store shoes safely in their boxes, away from dust, dirt and moisture. You can easily stack boxes of shoes and even put a polaroid on the outside for easy access when you need them.
If your canvas, leather or nubuck kicks are beyond repair, you can opt to spray them a different colour. Just make sure the colour is darker than what they are currently.
There you have it, a few simple tips and tricks to have your shoes looking in mint condition all year round. Let’s wrap it up with a timely reminder from one of our most loved fashion icons, “A woman with good shoes is never ugly” – Coco Chanel. Good luck and happy polishing!
Over to you…
How do you best look after your most treasured shoes?
We’d love to hear your inside tips in the comments below.