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Sunday, March 22, 2015

How To Shine Your Leather Shoes

Now that i have received a fine pair of calf leather oxford shoes from Meermin Mallorca. I thought it would be a great chance to share how i keep my dress shoes looking beautiful, clean and 'healthy'. Keeping them well maintained so that they will look good, last longer and make us look dapper !

Oxford Hiro Calf
Meermin Oxford

Regardless of how nice your shoes are, after a couple of wears, they can start looking worn and ugly - especially if you do not put in the effort to maintain them. 

If you haven't shined shoes before, don't worry - it's actually really simple and often therapeutic (at least for me). You will need a few things beforehand, though - which you can buy, depending on your budget, anywhere from a professional shoe shop (ed et al) to somewhere like NTUC, Tangs or Robinsons.

Here's what you will need

Essentials to maintain your shoe
The Essentials

A soft cloth. This can really be anything from a rag or an old t-shirt to a special buffing cloth (I normally use cut out parts of my old T-shirts).

A can of shoe polish. The cheapest ones sold at the regular super markets costs a couple of dollars. (Kiwi, etc). Make sure to get the appropriate polish to match your shoe color.

A good shoe brush. Usually these will cost you anywhere between $5 and $10. If you feel a tad luxurious, a fine horse hair brush from Allen Edmonds will cost you about $15.

A good quality leather conditioner. Saphir has one of the best range of leather conditioners for shoes. I personally use the highly recommended Saphir Renovateur, which costs about $28 (At Tangs), for all my leather products.

Here's what you do

First, brush off any dirt, mud, dust or other debris on your shoe using your brush or a damp cloth. I normally use a small brush (Allen Edmonds sells a great horse hair brush).

Wait for the shoe to air-dry before continuing to the next step. This will allow the leather to fully absorb the conditioner that you will be applying in the next step.

Apply a conditioner*, apply liberally to coat a protective layer onto the leather parts of your shoe. Allow it to dry for about 10-15 minutes.

* I use the product called Saphir Renovateur - which is both a cleaner and a conditioner. When used as a base for a new polish, it helps remove any prior polish product that has built up in the pores of the leather. It is able to deeply penetrates the upper lining to supply the essential nutrients required to maintain sufficient moisture. This allows the leather to 'breathe', which ultimately prevents drying and cracking. Let's just call this the moisturizing 'SPA' treatment for your expensive shoes.

Next, apply a little bit (dab the size of a five cent coin) of your shoe polish to the shoe with your cloth. Rub the shoe in small circles, using just a small amount of shoe polish at a time. 

Use your shoe brush to brush any excess polish off the shoe. 

Lastly, take your cloth, t-shirt or buffing cloth and buff out the rest of your shoe until it shines.

Infographic (Credits: Russell Shaw)

Shining your shoes is a simple process that should only take you no more than thirty minutes. Investing that few minutes to Keep your dress shoes looking great and conditioned will ensure that it lasts longer. Give it a try and your shoes will be thanking you for your efforts. :)

** If you are looking for great quality shoe care products at affordable prices do check out my latest article here.