“You can do anything but lay off of my blue suede shoes!” Elvis, we feel you. Suede sneaker are favorite to many people, not just Elvis. They are trendy, very comfortable and goes well with any outfit. Leather shoes are typically not that comfortable, whereas suede sneakers hit all the marks of being a quality shoe.
The only problem is they very hard to keep clean. Suede material is softer than regular leather. They get dirty easily and if you don’t know how to clean suede sneakers the right way, your shoe is ruined. We researched and found out 7 ways to clean sued sneakers! Let’s explore them
What Are Suede Sneakers?
Suede is a type of a leather that is used in many apparels, including shoes. They are basically derived from the underside of animal skin. Suede sneakers are different from typical leather sneakers, so don’t confuse these two.
Suede specifically comes from the underside of skin while typical leather shoes are from the outer side. This is why suede sneakers are much softer in texture and much more prone to being dirty. Still, they are very popular as the feel of these sneakers is very comfy and they are perfect for casual wear.
There are many ways of cleaning suedes. We have collected 7 of the best methods of how to clean suede sneakers. Without further ado, let’s look into them.
- Don’t Use Liquid Cleaners Unless You Absolutely Need To
Liquid cleaners can be very harsh on suedes. Using liquid cleaner or even soap water can change the texture of these sneakers by making them very dry. Too much liquid cleaners will completely destroy the uppers of the sneakers and you will end up with a worn out shoe.
However, if there are no other options, you can use liquid cleaners but make sure to use very little. Even better, if you use special cleaners made for cleaning suedes-more about this in the next sections!
- Suede Cleaners- Try Them!
Suede cleaners are specially manufactured with ingredients which will not harm your favorite sneakers. Professionally developed cleaners are always the best option. These are water repellant sprays that safely remove dirt without harming the texture of the material. Most of them comes with special accessories to make the task easier. What are these accessories and how to use them? Read the next tip!
- Make Use of Suede Cleaning Kits
The most important lesson on how to clean suede sneakers is making use of a suede cleaning kit. You can buy these kits at amazon or pretty much any convenient stores, they’re pretty easy to find. This kit usually comes with a suede brush and eraser.
These are the bare minimum of a typical suede cleaning kit, although some brands have more items included in the kit. Jason Markk’s suede cleaning kits are the most popular. First use the eraser to remove the dirt from midsole or the upper. Then, use the brush get rid of the loosened dirt and bring back the texture.
4. You Don’t Need Any Kits If You Follow This
What if you can’t find any suede kits or can’t afford one now? There are other fool-proof ways to follow. You can use toothbrush instead! Grab an old toothbrush and remove the stubborn dirt stuck at your shoes.
Only problem is the roughness in texture. Using toothbrush can slightly change the texture of the sneakers. To restore the texture, you can use razors. Just shave the stringy bits of fabric and then brush them away to get a newer looking suede sneaker.
5. Baking Soda Can Be a Substitute
If you have run out of your suede cleaners, you can use the baking soda instead. It’s a great way to clean the suede if they have large stains. This is a dry cleaning method, so no worries about spilling anything on the shoes. Baking soda has the ability to absorb the grease and odor, so it’s a great choice. Also, it’s the most available thing in the market. Sprinkle some baking soda on the suedes and rub it in. Use a brush to gently remove the dirt after 15-20 minutes.
6. Stubborn Stains? Try Vinegar.
How to clean suede sneaker with stubborn stains? Well, if you don’t have suede cleaners, then try using white vinegar. This is perhaps the only Five Minutes Craft solution that works. It might sound slightly off-didn’t we just say to stay far away from liquid cleaners? White vinegar is liquid but it is not strong like liquid cleaners. It is simply a mild organic acid, which can break down the grease or any oily stains in the fabric.
All you have to do is dip a brush or flannel in white vinegar and rub it in to remove the stain. Use back and forth motion and reapply the vinegar to remove the stain if needed. Only downside? It might take a while. Vinegar evaporates faster, so it won’t take much long for drying.
7. Make Your Own Cleaner-But with Precaution
You can make your own cleaner by adding a few ingredients-but it is the last and least recommended way of how to clean suede sneakers as it’s quite cumbersome and needs caution. Vinegar and baking soda which are previously mentioned can be used as DIY method too. Some use isopropyl alcohol to clean the stains, but remember that it is very flammable and needs a lot of caution.
Hydrogen Peroxide in small quantities is also a good remover of stubborn stains, but be very careful with the use. Remember that some suede sneakers may not withstand them, especially the dyed one. You don’t want to end up with faded suedes. So, only use this option if you have no other options available.
These were the best ways of how to clean suede sneakers. No matter what method you use, try to be very gentle with suedes. They wear out fast if not properly taken care of. Avoid wearing them in dirty places or where there is risk of ruining them easily for longevity. Here is another article on The Best Way to Clean Your Suede Tennis Shoes to Always Keep Them New.