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How To Shine Leather Shoes

January 12th, 2011

Shoe shine sponge

It’s amazing how many guys don’t take care of their shoes. You see, shining is not just about making them look good, it’s also about prolonging their lifespan.

if you do the math, you could save up to 50% off your shoes money… simply because… shoes will last you twice as long if you take care of them.

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I’ll tell you the proper way to shine your shoes and, at the end, I’ll give you some extra tips about how to keep them lasting longer.

Shining your shoes

Shining your shoes is not complicated, even if you do it the right way. You just need to pay attention to the steps and DON’T SKIP them!

(NOTE: I’m not talking about suede shoes here – these will be addressed in a separate article. I’m talking about leather shoes exclusively.)

Step 1: remove any dirt from your shoes

Most guys skip this stem thinking that they can cover up the dirt with shoe polish!

This is a big no-no. Dirt can damage leather in time so it needs to be removed first and foremost. Use a slightly damp cloth to do it (an old sock or something).

Do not damp it woo much as you want as little water to penetrate the skin as possible. Water will make its way into the leather and you will soon see small cracks in your shoe. The only time when you should damp your cloth more is if the dirt is very big.

If you do use a damp cloth, make sure the last thing you use during this step is the dry cloth, to remove any excess water from the shoe surface.

Step 2: apply the shoe polish carefully and uniformly

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You’re probably familiar with this step. My only concern is that you don’t apply too much shoe polish. Just use enough to give the shoe a nice and clean look.

If you don’t have solid shoe polish (recommended), you can also use:

- liquid shoe polish
- a silicon brush

Only use these if you don’t have any regular shoe polish. These two alternatives don’t do much to protect your shoe from outside factors, which, in turn, does not prolong your shoe’s lifespan.

Step 3: wait 10 minutes, then remove excess shoe polish

Even if you didn’t use too much shoe polish, you should still do this step. Wait at least 10 minutes for the shoe polish to dry and make its way into the shoe. After that, use a dry cloth to remove the excess polish. This step will also give a nice shine to your shoe.

That’s it! YOU now know the proper way to shine shoes.

But I made a promise in the beginning of this article, that I would give you some other tips about making them last longer.

The absolute best secret I can give you is to wear your shoes by rotation. Buy at least 3 pairs of shoes and wear them consecutively. Most guys wear their favorite pair of shoes for months in a row, then they have to buy a new one.

If you rotate the shoes you wear every day, you’ll not only look more stylish (because people will notice you have several pairs) but you’ll actually wear your favorite pair longer (in time).

Here’s my second tip: store the shoes you don’t wear in a separate dry place. I’m talking winter shoes versus rest-of-the-year shoes. Keep them away from humidity if you’re not going to be wearing them for longer periods of time.

Also, make sure you put something inside each shoe to prevent it from getting deformed. This can happen to a shoe if it’s not worn. Use special wooden shoe shapers.

Remember, the more you take care of your clothes, the more money you save in the long run.

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