High-quality leather shoes usually require some level of maintenance, and suede shoes are no different. Made from the inside of tanned leather, suede can be a maintenance nightmare. This delicate leather can't be polished, scrubbed, waxed, or shined. Luckily, there are a few tricks for combatting stains and other marks, and should that fail, creating a nice patina is another solution.
Owning a pair of suede boots or nubuck boots means you've probably wondered how to clean suede to get off any scuff marks or grime without damaging the suede leather on your loafers. Suede is a material that needs to be treated with the utmost care, as it's very delicate and soft.
It's recommended to immediately apply a suede protector to your new boots, especially if they're made of quality suede that you want to last.
Best Suede Shoes Cleaner
This is rated as Amazon's choice for suede, nubuck, and leather protectors, and it has tons of glowing reviews. It'll help your suede loafers repel water and stains, helping to keep them in better quality for longer.
You'll also want to start by buying a suede eraser and suede brush, they're designed for cleaning suede shoes and will make the task much easier.
2. Premium Suede Brush Nubuck Cleaner Crepe Brush and Seude Eraser Set | Complete Shoe Cleaning Bristle Brushes Kit for Nap Care
This cleaning kit from Amazon is a top-rated product for cleaning suede shoes, including your penny loafers or Birkenstocks. These tools effectively clean dried-on stains from water or other things that may have lightened your black suede or brown suede boots.
The blog One Good Thing has an article with pictures and step-by-step instructions for using these tools correctly. You'll first use the suede eraser on the stain, applying some pressure. Then, taking the suede brush, lightly brush the eraser marks away, revealing the perfectly clean dark brown suede beneath.
How to Clean Suede Boots
This YouTube video also shows a demonstration on how to properly use these tools:
If you end up with a deeper stain on your blue suede shoes that the eraser and brush won't lift, many people recommend using vinegar with a microfiber cloth and a toothbrush to clean deeper stains from your suede sneakers. Who What Wear has an article discussing how to use white vinegar to lift tough stains!
This YouTube video also demonstrates how to use white vinegar to clean your shoes safely.
Remember to store your boots on a shoe tree to help them maintain their shape when you aren't wearing them!