How to clean suede shoes in 5 easy steps

The question of how to clean suede shoes is one that has been asked for generations. We can’t help but have a strong sartorial affinity for them despite the fact that they may not be very practical. Just ask Elvis Presley about how adaptable, elegant, and, the most of the time, incredibly comfortable they could be.

What we despise, on the other hand, is the inevitability of their becoming dirty and necessitating cleaning. You can be excused for thinking that there is no hope for your soiled suedes if you wish. After all, how exactly does one clean something that cannot even be submerged in water? You need not worry, however, because there is a method for cleaning suede shoes, and it is possible to save them despite the various types of dirt they may have accumulated.

Even better, the tip for cleaning your suede shoes is actually quite simple, and it employs goods that are commonly found in households. This means that you won’t have to shell out money for any expensive equipment (although a suede brush and some suede protector can be smart purchases to make).

You won’t need much more than a rubber or eraser, some white vinegar, baking soda, a flannel or face cloth, a suede brush or nail brush, and some suede protector if you already have some.

As long as you have the appropriate tools and supplies sitting around the house, you should be able to make your suede shoes appear as nice as they did when they were first purchased. Believe us when we say that it is effective.

Here are five simple procedures that may be followed to clean suede shoes, including boots, trainers, heels, and sandals, fast and effectively:

  • To begin, brush the surface of the shoe with a suede brush to remove any excess dirt and grit that has accumulated there.
  • After that, try to move any marks that are still present with a rubber or an eraser.
  • If a stain still won’t come out, try cleaning it with white vinegar.
  • Baking powder can be used to remove stains caused by oil or grease.
  • Apply a suede protection as a last step.
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You’ll Need
  • A suede brush/nail brush
  • White vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • A flannel or face cloth
  • Eraser/Rubber


1. Make a first pass over the surface of the shoe with the suede brush to remove any excess grit and grime that may be present.

If you do not have a suede brush, you can use a clean nail brush or toothbrush instead. These alternatives will work just as well.To begin, brush the surface of the shoe with short strokes to remove any loose particles and grit that may be present. It is important to remember to brush suede in the direction that the grain runs, often known as in the direction that the suede naturally sits.

When dealing with more tenacious stains, like as scuff marks, use extra pressure and move the brush in a quick back and forth manner. This will help elevate suede fibers that have become flattened and will further assist with the cleaning process

2. Afterward, make use of the rubber in an effort to move any leftover marks.

Even better if you have a suede rubber, but your ordinary pencil-case version will still work well, provided the rubber has been rubbed clean of any pre-existing stains first. If you have a suede rubber, that’s even better, but your regular pencil-case version will still work well.

Consider this method to be a somewhat more rigorous way to removing scuff marks because it involves applying pressure in a continual, back-and-forth motion to help release any extra particles. If you determine after some time that it is still not working, don’t try to force it. You don’t want to put too much pressure on the suede or you run the risk of harming the shoe.

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3. If the stain still won’t budge, try white vinegar or rubbing alcohol

Note that vinegar and alcohol may temporarily dampen the suede, which will cause a change in the color of the fabric. However, after the liquid evaporates, the suede will go back to having its natural color. It is possible that many applications will be required before you are able to identify whether or not the stain has been properly removed.

4. If a stain is from oil or grease, try baking powder

Even if your suede shoes come into contact with an oily or greasy substance, it does not necessarily mean the end of the line for them. One of the many reasons why baking soda is considered to be one of the most useful things that a person can keep in their home is due to the exceptional absorptive capacity that it possesses.

Do a patch test to see how your footwear responds to the baking soda before you get started. This will help you avoid any problems. If everything looks normal, you are ready to get started.

After using a clean towel to gently remove any extra oil or grease, sprinkle a sufficient amount of baking soda on the stain and blot it until the baking soda has completely covered the stain. The next step is to let it sit for the maximum amount of time feasible. Even just a few hours will do the trick, but leaving it alone for the entire night is optimal.

After the allotted amount of time has passed, carefully remove the baking soda from the surface using a suede or nail brush before examining the results of your labor. You are going to want to keep going through the steps until you are satisfied with the results.

5. Complete the process by applying a suede protection.

When it comes to suede shoes, the old adage “prevention is better than cure” is adage that definitely rings true. But not all suede protectors are made equal.

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Reviews frequently report that using particular products will result in irreversible color changes; therefore, if you intend to use a protector, the best strategy is to select one by considering ratings and reviews left by previous purchasers in order to avoid any unintended consequences.

It may seem counterintuitive to use liquids like white vinegar and rubbing alcohol for cleaning, but their acidic compositions make them quite effective in breaking up particle clumps, which is exactly what you want to happen while cleaning.

Before placing the vinegar or rubbing alcohol-soaked corner of your flannel or face washer to the stain and massaging it into the suede in a back-and-forth motion, be sure not to completely submerge the cloth in the liquid. The suede should only be soaked to a moderate degree at this point.

To effectively erase the stain, continue working at the spot and reapplying the vinegar or alcohol in any areas where it is required to do so. Repetition and perseverance are the keys to success in this step. Both of the liquids have their distinct smells, however those smells will disappear once some time has passed.


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