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How to Clean Suede Shoes | Step by Step Guide

How to Clean Suede Shoes

Are you ignoring suede shoes just because they require extra maintenance? No way! How can you just avoid such amazing shoes only because of maintenance issue? Yes, I know cleaning these materials are a bit tricky but not highly complicated. You can do it easily all by yourself at home, all you need is the right guide.

Suede shoes are really fantastic, even though they are delicate. These leathers get stained pretty easily and can be stained by water too. And keeping these shoes always on the box is not an option. So I would say, spend some time to learn the suede shoe cleaning and make people stare at your feet every time you hit the road.

But how are going to find a reliable instruction? Well, don’t worry, I have got you covered. I am going to show you exactly how to clean suede shoe step by step right in this very article which will help you to keep your suede shoes look like new.

So without further ado, let’s get started.

What Tools Would You Need?

In order to excite or manipulate the suede fibers, you would need smoothing. And there are some brushes which are specially designed for such a purpose called “suede brush”, it could be very helpful. If you can’t manage a suede brush, no worries. You can get started with an old toothbrush, towel or a flat emery board.

Removing some stubborn scuffs and soils could be a little daunting. A pencil eraser and gum eraser could be helpful. If the condition is extreme, then you might need grip sandpaper, Mr. clean magic eraser, and steel wool, these are supposed to wipe off hardest scuff and soils.

And the last set of things you are going to need is, isopropyl alcohol, baking soda, vinegar, naphtha and rolled oats. You have to choose these depending on the situation of your shoes. Before you get in to the actual action, first try these things on a very small portion of the shoes to test how they works and if they damage the shoe material or not.

Wait a Minute

Give a quick read to the instructions that came with the shoes and make sure you don’t make any cleaning operation that is prohibited there. If you don’t find the instructions, making a visit to the manufacturer website or contacting the customer service would be a mature decision.

However, customer service might try to sell their cleaning kit to you but they worth. With those cleaning kits, you are not going to need anything else and you can make tension free cleaning operation. And never wash real suede shoes in washing machines or don’t dry them in the dryer, doing these can damage your shoes pretty badly.

How to Remove Scuff, Soil, And Dirt from the Suede?

  • If your shoes have sticky mud on it, make it dry completely before start cleaning. Because cleaning sticky mud will make the entire shoe muddy. Once the mud is dried completely try to break them off with hands.
  • Toothbrush, suede brush, towel or emery board, whatever you have managed. Brush the whole shoe gently and try to remove soil as much as possible. Don’t get too hard on cleaning, don’t force the dirt as that will cause dirt to get deeper into the fibers and will make it irritating for you to clean them.
  • Keep brushing the entire shoe until all at soils are removed. When all the dirt is gone, time to remove the scuffs and loosen matter fibers. Pick a forceful brush and brush the shoes with gentle pressure.
  • If you see the fibers are not lifting in some areas, you can use half sharped edges such as credit card to shave the fibers back. Don’t put over pressure.
  • Still didn’t work to raise up the fibers? Well, moisten the shoes by giving some steam from a hot pot. You can steam also from iron or cloth steamers.
  • Once you have completely moisten the shoes, now remove as much as water possible by a dry towel and then again start brushing, it’ll work.
  • After brushing the entire shoe, it’s time to set them in a cool place and dry them, though drying in a cool place will take time but that’s accurate. Never put suede shoes in a hot place in order to get them dried faster, this will damage the suede material.
  • When shoes are dried entirely, brush out the loosen fibers and use pencil or art gum eraser to wipe off the leftover stains.
  • And the lastly, take a small amount of vinegar or Naphtha into a clean cloth or towel and gently rub them. After rubbing, again dry them and if you see any loosen nap after drying them, again brush them off. And you will get your suede shoes cleaned.

How to Clean Other Stains from Suede?

  • Most kind of stains could be cleaned by white vinegar. Just take a light amount of vinegar into a clean cloth and rub it on the affected area of the shoe. Wait for a while and let it dry. When its dried completely, try to take off the stains using a towel or cloth.
  • Grease stains are the most stubborn stains which are really hard to remove. However, some could be removed by warm water. On the other hand, sprinkling talcum powder or cornstarch on the affected area and leaving them for a night also works well.
  • If your shoes have got ink stains on them. Keeping rubbing it with the alcohol, until the stain is gone. Fresh ink stains could be removed by scrubbing sandpaper.
  • For removing chewing gums or wax, you would need to freeze them for a while. Once you are done freezing them, try to chip them off with a nail brush.

Tips on Maintaining Suede Shoes

  • There are some waterproofing sprays which will make you suede shoes resistant to most stains. Spray them on your suede shoes before you wear them. But before applying the waterproofing spray make sure you brush the shoes.
  • In order to protect the shiny look of your suede shoes, brush them before and after each use.
  • You can use suede shoe dye spray on the shoes when the color starts fading. Find out the same color shoe dye spray and them apply it.
  • When you could not take off the hard stains from the shoes, don’t force it. Take it to the professionals who works on leather and suede type materials. Forcing brushes harder to clean the stains will damage the suede.
  • And lastly, never wear suede shoes in rain.

Time to wrap up. Hope you have enjoyed the entire process. I have tried to demonstrate all the step understandably. However, if you have any kind of disagreement or suggestion, don’t forget to put them in the comment section. Kudos!

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