Suede/ leather cleaning tips

HOW TO CLEAN SUEDE/ LEATHER SHOES

A lot has changed since Elvis sang, "You can do anything, but lay off of my blue suede shoes." Suede shoes, however, are still vulnerable to scuffs, scratches and stains, and they're still hard enough to clean. Has too much rockin' around the clock taken its toll on your suede shoes? Follow these steps to get them looking good as new.

Get a suede brush and make sure your shoes are dry. Suede has a soft grain that is best cleaned with a special brush, which you can purchase with a suede cleaning kit. Suede is also very sensitive to water, so basic dirt and scuffs are best dealt with when the shoes are dry.


Brush gently to remove dirt. Use the suede cleaning brush to lightly brush away dust or dirt that has accumulated on your shoes. Don't go back and forth: brush repeatedly towards the same direction. Once you get off this layer of grime, your shoes will already look newer.

Brush vigorously to remove scuff marks. When you scuff your shoes, the suede's grain can get pressed down in one direction. Lift the grain by brushing scuffed areas vigorously back and forth. Again this is best done with a suede brush.


Use an eraser for stubborn marks. Scuffs and marks that won't brush out can often be removed by rubbing with a pencil eraser or a piece of crepe rubber (the crinkled rubber that many shoe soles are made from). You can also by a special suede eraser designed for just this task. Apply a moderate amount of pressure and increase as tougher marks require.

Protect your suede. Once they are clean, spray a coat of suede protector spray on your shoes. This will help prevent further stains and marks. Follow the manufacturer's directions.