Looking after your new leather shoes requires time, patience, a little bit of skill and the right tools for the job. Thankfully, we have all that covered and more in our handy men’s shoe care manual. Find out everything you need to know about looking after those new shoes, to get years of enjoyment from them.

What do you need to properly maintain and care for your shoes?

Have the right tools and equipment at hand, and you’ll always be able to properly care for your leather shoes. At the very least you should have:

  • Multiple shoe polish applicator brushes: You can’t apply black and neural polish with the same brush, so make sure you have multiple polish application brushes
  • Suede brush: Suede shoes need more care than leather shoes, and they also require their own brush. These shorter bristles make light work of removing dirt and spots from suede shoes and boots.
  • Quality duster cloth: 100% cotton is best for ensuring a high shine finish on all your leather goods.
  • A selection of shoe polishes: It’s best to buy a shoe polish made by the same brand as your shoes, so that colour matches perfectly.
  • Quality shoe cream or leather conditioner: Apply to keep the leather soft and supple.
  • Cedar shoe tree: For storing your shoes in when you aren’t wearing them. The cedar wood helps to wick moisture away from your leather shoes and absorbs any odours at the same time.
  • Shoe horn: To help guide your foot into your shoes without damaging the heel.

How often should you clean your shoes?

A weekly clean and polish will help keep your shoes in great condition. This will ensure you remove any dirt and grime, help to keep the leather supple and nourished so that it doesn’t crack, and inspect the shoe for any signs of damage which might need repaired.

What’s the right way to polish shoes?  

Everyone has their own routine when it comes to polishing shoes but here are a few tried and tested ways to ensure you get a great result:

  1. Remove the laces. You won’t be able to clean the shoe properly if you leave them in, and will probably end up just getting a build up of polish around them, which will transfer to your fingers when you go to tie them.
  2. Put down some newspaper so you don’t get dirt and polish over your table or floor.
  3. Use a horsehair brush to remove the surface dirt from your shoes.
  4. Apply a small amount of polish to your polish brush and cover your entire shoe with it – use the closest matching colour of polish to your shoe as you can get. Apply using small circular motions, and make sure you apply it everywhere.
  5. Use a brush to buff your shoes – the point of this is to remove the polish and leave behind a high shine. Take your time over this stage – the longer you spend the better the end result.
  6. Once you are happy with the shine, use your finishing cloth to remove any streaks and reveal your beautifully polished leather shoes.

Want the perfect kit to look after your leather shoes? You can’t go wrong with a professional valet kit – just take a look at some of the great shoe care kits we have available to buy now.