Buckles on shoes or belts

Use an old toothbrush and toothpaste, then brush off with a wet rag or rinse under cold water.

Cowhide, calfskin, kidskin

Keep well-polished. Polishing maintains a good look, as well as keeping leather soft. As a preventive measure, it's recommended to apply several coats of translucent polish before shoes are worn for the first time

Fabric shoes

Wash fabric shoes by hand and let air dry at least once a month to keep them looking new. Keep the shape by stuffing it with newspaper or any hard paper and replacing it as it gets soaked through, yet, newspapers help speed up the drying process.


Wipe with a cloth or use a delicate brush to remove dirt from surface.

Patent leather

Remove surface soil with a watery cloth. Occasionally apply soft cream polish or thin flick of Vaseline lubricant jelly. To keep leather flexible, apply conditioner or preservative. For good results, clean patent leather with Windex.

Reptile (alligator, lizard, crocodile, snake)

Snakeskin should only be polished with a soft cloth that is tapped with the grain. Spraying lightly with hairspray will assist to keep the grain down.


Regular trips to the dry cleaners will keep them looking fresh.

Suede shoes

Should be brushed clean with a suede brush or light sandpaper. This will raise the nap of the leather as well as loosen dirt. Never use water on suede because the dissolved minerals generally cause blotting. Stains such as paint or glue can be removed with fine sandpaper. A gum eraser or soft side of an emery board helps remove spots.