Suede boots are a wardrobe staple due to their quality and versatility. These kinds of shoes typically come into fashion during the winter, which is when they are most impractical. Despite the high quality of suede boots, they are not the best in cold, wet, or frozen weather, but that does not stop them from being a winter wardrobe staple every year. Their impracticality aside, there is something very elegant and classy about suede boots – and considering the King of music, Elvis Presley, was a fan of them, we can not argue with their style!

If you want to be bang on-trend this upcoming winter but are tired of ruining pretty suede shoes, then fear not. This is the ultimate guide on how to clean suede shoes, so you can keep comfortable and fashionable all season long no matter the weather.

How To Clean Suede Boots

It can be quite difficult to clean suede shoes, even though they cannot be worn outdoors without collecting dirt and debris. As suede is a delicate material that cannot get wet without becoming damaged, it can feel like a nightmare to keep your suede boots in good condition throughout the winter.

Luckily, there are some ways that you can learn how to clean shoe suede uppers without damaging the delicate material underneath – and yes, it is possible to even remove stains this way too! When it comes to cleaning suede shoes and boots, you will need to be very careful and use only specific products to make sure that you do not damage the material.

What You Need For Suede Cleaning

When you are learning how to clean suede on shoes, the most important thing you can take away is the care that is required for this task. While suede boots are very fashionable and attractive, they can be a nightmare to keep clean, considering suede is a delicate material. This means that you will not get very far using water and traditional soap as you might do for another pair of boots or shoes you own.

Instead, you need specific tools for suede cleaning in order to clean suede and keep it in good condition. If you want to clean suede shoes safely, then you will need:

  • A suede brush (a nail brush can be a good alternative here)
  • White vinegar
  • A suede eraser
  • A flannel or face cloth

Now that you have everything you need, it is time to learn how clean suede shoes without damaging the material and ruining your winter wardrobe. While a suede brush is preferred, a nail brush or even a toothbrush can be used if you do not have this tool on hand. As long as you have some form of flexible cleaning brush on hand that can be easily used to clean suede boots, then you should be ready to go.

Using natural materials like vinegar is the best option when it comes to cleaning suede boots, as this will be gentler on the material than harsh synthetic products and is cheaper to buy. However, if you do not want to use this kind of product or have some really tough stains that need to be worked on, then you may find more success using a specialist suede cleaner. Without further ado, here is how to clean suede shoes:

1) Brush The Boots

Begin by using the suede brush, or your alternative, on the surface of the shoes. Using light strokes to remove any debris, dust, or grit that may be on your suede boots will help get them prepared for a deeper clean. It is important to remember to brush with the grain and the direction of the suede, rather than constant back and forth when using your suede brush to avoid damaging the material.

If you are dealing with tougher stains when trying to clean suede boots or cannot get rid of a pesky mark on the leather, then more pressure will need to be applied. This is when you can start to use a gentle back and forth movement to remove scuffs, as this will help raise flattened fibers to give you more access to the dirt underneath.

2) Erase Away The Marks

To further remove marks and stains from suede shoes, a suede rubber is required. As an alternative, a regular pencil eraser can also be used as long as it is free from marks and is buffed.

This is a more vigorous approach to removing stains, like mud, from suede, so make sure you use a bit more pressure in this step. It is recommended that you continue to use back an forth motions when trying to clean away stains from suede with an eraser, as this can dislodge any stuck particles.

3) Remove Stains with White Vinegar

If the stains will not budge from your suede boots when you use a brush or eraser, it is time to get out the white vinegar. White vinegar is a useful tool and can come in handy for more tasks than learning how to clean suede boots, so it is something you should try to always have in your cupboards.

This acid in the vinegar will help break down clumps of particles, which should make cleaning away stains much easier. You will need to use the flannel or face cloth for this part of the cleaning. Dip the corner of this towel into the vinegar, then gently apply it to the stain.

Rub in the vinegar to break up the particles using a gentle back and forth motion. The key to this part of the cleaning routine is repetition, so you will need to be patient here. This means that you should keep working at the mark on your boots, and reapply the vinegar when needed until it has been cleaned away.

As vinegar is a liquid, it will dampen the suede on your boots, which can alter the color of your shoes. This is only a temporary issue, and the boots should dry back to their normal color after cleaning.

4) Finish With A Protective Layer

Now you have spent a long time learning how to clean suede boots and getting them perfect once more, you do not want to have to repeat the process in a hurry. This is why using a suede protector should be your final step in the cleaning process, as it can keep your boots free from further damage and dirt.

A suede protector should create a barrier between the material of your boots and the environment around you, preventing further stains and damage. For the best protection, you should consult customer reviews and professional opinions to find the best suede protector as not all of these products are made equal.

Final Notes

Now that you have learned how to clean suede boots, you can enjoy the upcoming fall and winter season without concern and know that you will look good while doing so! Suede is a stylish and elegant material, even if it does come with some impractical properties.

Learning how to properly take care of your suede shoes will extend their life, meaning you do not have to waste a lot of money each season replacing footwear, and a pair of shoes can now last you a long time. This one lesson will ensure that you always look great in your suede boots, no matter the weather!

About the Author

Hey, I'm Lilly Harvey. If there's two things I'm passionate about in life, it's shoes and writing!

Combining both my passions with my Fashion Design degree, I've helped create Shoe Adviser to help readers choose the best shoes for them, enjoy!

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