Shine Your Shoes Like A Pro
There are a few things in life that every person should master, whether that’s knowing how to throw the perfect dinner party, learning how to properly tie a tie, the exact days to put the bins out, and polishing your leather shoes like a pro. Yes, we know, it’s an arduous task at times, especially if you’ve never tried your hand at it before, but the benefits pay off in reams. Shiny, clean shoes are the epitome of professionalism and often indicate to people that you’re successful, have meticulous attention to detail, or you just really enjoy polishing your shoes. Take a look at our top tips below, as well as a handy equipment list, so you’re prepared and ready to get your hands dirty.
Shoe Polishing Kit
First things first, here’s a list of the equipment you might want to invest in to build up your shoe shine kit:
- Shoe polish in a range of colours
- Saddle soap or shoe cream – again, invest in various shades
- Buffing brush
- Applicator brush
- Rags or cloths – keep more than one as these will get dirty
It’s worthwhile investing in some high-quality shoe polish and saddle soap, as there’s no point rubbing poor solutions into your expensive leather shoes, only to waste time and energy not gaining the results you’re after.
How To Polish Leather Shoes
Follow these simple steps to achieve the perfect shine on your favourite work shoes or wedding attire:
1. Always remove the laces first. This is often a step that people forget to follow, as they believe they can simply polish around the lace and achieve the same results. However, removing the laces allows you to shine every area on the show, so that there are no dull spots. It also means that your laces last longer as they don’t get clogged up with polish – and they don’t change colour.
2. Use an old cloth or rag to apply shoe cream or saddle soap. This can be an old duster or tea towel (even an old t-shirt) – but make sure it’s clean before you start the process. Your choice of cream or soap is completely up to you, but ensure it’s high quality and matches the colour of your shoes. Think lighter for beige shoes and black for your sharpest shoe. Don’t overload your shoe with cream either – too much can clog up the leather and be difficult to buff away.
3. Apply the cream in a circular motion. Remember your dentist always tells you to clean with small circles? It’s the same for shoe shining. This ensures that no spots are missed and you remove all the dirt that’s ingrained in the nooks and crannies of the leather.
4. Time to get buffing. Use a soft, but firm brush to gently buff the shoe cream off the surface. This creates that sheen we’ve all been searching for.
5. It’s polish time. If you’re impressed by the condition of your shoes after the cream or saddle soap has been applied, wait for the main part. Again, choose a polish that matches the colour of your leather almost exactly. Use a small applicator brush (or that old, trusty rag again) to apply the polish in circular motions.
6. Shine bright. Using your buffing brush, go to town on your shoes. Don’t be aggressive, but do apply a firm, decent amount of pressure to ensure all the polish is removed and you’re reaching for your sunglasses to stop the glare.
Benefits Of Shining Your Shoes
There are multiple advantages to looking after your leather shoes properly. Leather is a durable material, but still needs love and attention – and will weather, just like our skin. Keeping on top of cleaning and shining your shoes will prolong the length of their life, as well as keeping them looking their very best.
Polished and presentable shoes also add a certain element to any outfit, whether you’re best man at a wedding, have that job interview of a lifetime, or need to appear in court. It also gives the illusion that you’ve bought brand new shoes for every occasion, when you’ve simply invested in your own shoe shining kit. It’s an affordable and cost-effective way to look great and keep your feet in check.
We know that many of you don’t mind spending more money on a great pair of shoes, that you know will last. That’s why simply learning a few hints and tips about shoe shining can really give longevity to those shoes and keep you pounding the pavements. In such a wasteful world, it’s important to buy into great quality and appreciate a luxurious pair of leather shoes. Take pride in your ability to keep those shoes looking and feeling expensive – and they’ll hopefully carry you through all those amazing memories in life.