Can I Wash Leather Shoes? – What You Should Know

Leather shoes are one of my ultimate fantasies. No wonder I have 35 leather shoes and leather boots in my collection. That makes me more of a collector than a user. However, with these years of experience, I have learned a lot about leather shoes.

Recently, I am facing a common question from my friends and family. And that is, can I wash leather shoes? So, I have decided to share the tips and tricks to clean your favorite leather shoes. Head up! You can wash your leather shoes, for the record. 

Can I Wash Leather Shoes?

Can I Wash Leather Shoes

Yes, you can wash your leather shoes. But that doesn’t mean that you will be dumping those straight into a bucket of soap water. If you do that, it will ruin your favorite shoes. And that is the last thing you would have wanted to happen.

So, here is the full guide on the best way to clean leather shoes. Have patience and try to follow the steps with sheer precision.

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How to Clean Leather Shoes

clean Leather Shoes

You will have to follow the following steps to clean your leather shoes. Always keep that in mind, whatever you do, don’t dump your shoes straight into the water. Nonetheless, let’s jump right into the process:

Step One: Create Washing Solution

First, you will have to create a washing solution. It is not rocket science, all you need to do is to add some dishwashing liquid or detergent into warm water.

Step Two: Remove the Laces

Now, remove the laces as they will gain weight. If you want to clean the laces as well, dump them directly into the washing solution and wash it down. Don’t forget to dry them out with a blow dryer.

Step Three: Clean The Shoes

First, you will have to brush up any dirt from the shoes. Then soak a soft cloth into the solution and rub the shoes with it. Target the dirty areas. 

Step Four: Run a Dry Cloth

Now, as the shoe is washed, run a dry cloth to soak up any excess water. Any sort of excess water can damage the leather. 

Step Five: Dry the Shoes

Now, when the shoe is clean and any excess water is soaked, use a hairdryer to dry out the shoes. Remember not to dry your shoes in direct sun.

Step Six: Apply Leather Conditioner

Now, as the shoe is dried, you will have to apply leather conditioner on the shoes. Apply the conditioner in various parts and run them down with a clean cloth. This will make the leather shine as new. Let it dry out. 

You can easily find good-quality leather conditioners either online or in stores. I use one of them while cleaning brown leather shoes. 

This is how you will be cleaning your leather shoes. However, you can find a leather shoe cleaner in stores or online. But I prefer the traditional method.

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Can I Remove Stain on Leather Shoes?

Yes, you can easily remove stains on leather shoes. First, mark down the area that has stains. Then, brush out any sort of dirt from that part. Now, make a stain-removing solution. All you need is lemon and cream of tartar.

Mix an equal amount of both the ingredients. This will work as a mild bleaching solution. Now, gently rub the area until the stain is completely gone. 

If you have light-colored leather, then this will work like a charm. If the stain is dark, then you will have to apply a coat of the solution and leave it for 10 minutes. Then rub it down with a clean cloth.

Can I Remove Ink from Leather Shoes?

Yes, you can remove ink from leather. Take a cotton bud or small cloth and dip it in nail polish remover or rubbing alcohol.

Then gently dab the ink until it is soaked by the bud. Do not work it down or smudge. Doing this will spread the ink and make things even worse. So, keep that in mind and work with patience.

Can I Remove Water Stains from Leather Shoes?

Yes, you can remove water stains. Simply apply more water on the spot. Now, applying more water means only moist the area, not dumping a whole bucket. 

Now, as the area is moist, dry it out with a hairdryer. The results are satisfying.

Can I Remove Oil from Leather Shoes?

Oil is pretty hard to remove. But, you can also do that with the right ingredients. Apply some baking soda or cornstarch directly on the spot. Then take a damp cloth and slowly massage the area.

After that, leave it to rest for a few hours or if possible overnight. Then rub the powder off. As starch soaks oil and water, it will work like a charm.

Can I Repair Scratches of Leather Shoes? 

Repair  Leather Shoes

Scratches and scuffs on leather shoes are heartbreaking. However, you can fix some scuffs at home, using home remedies. 

Apply some toothpaste to the scuff. Then rub it with a clean and dry cloth. Work your way out. It will work just fine with small scratches and make your shoe good as new.

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Can I Wash My Leather Shoes in a Washing Machine?

It is a big NO. You cannot wash your leather shoes in a washing machine. It will ruin the leather and make the shoes unwearable. Also, avoid direct water of any sort.

Final Thoughts

Leather shoes require a lot of attention. However, follow the following suggestions and make things pretty easy for you.

  • Keep your shoes in dry places.
  • If possible, keep the shoes in shoe boxes. Or you can use clothes to cover them.
  • Avoid dumping them in water.
  • If your shoes get wet, try to dry them out ASAP.
  • Avoid keeping your shoes dry under the direct sun.

So, if you ask me, can I wash leather shoes? I would say yes, And I know you can easily cope up with the steps as well.

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