Shoe care is often over looked and can end up costing you a lot of money in the long run.
When I was younger I was terrible for looking after my shoes and this meant that practically every six weeks I had to buy new shoes again because the heel had worn down so much it couldn't be repaired again.
Below are my frugal living tips on keeping your shoes and sneakers looking like new.
To start with it is always a good idea to buy the best quality shoes you can afford in the first place. This should guarantee that they are made from materials that are much more hardwearing and better made, thus ensuring that with a little care they will last longer.
Leather shoes are better than shoes made from man made materials for several reasons. They are not only better for your feet as they are more breathable and so don't make your feet sweat but also they are far stronger and are not likely to tear easily.
Dry rot is a fungal condition that attacks wood so it is unlikely that your shoes or sneakers will be affected by this condition. However they can still rot if left wet.
usually it is the glue which is affected rather than the material of the shoe, but if the shoe or sneaker is old then the material can become fragile and so more prone to rotting.
So after wearing your shoes out in the rain, make sure you dry them out before you wear them again. By pushing newspaper inside the shoe this will help to soak up any internal water and will also help the shoe to keep its shape.
If you make shoe care a priority from the start then this will add life to your shoes in the long run.
Get rubber soles fitted to protect leather soles from the start. This way after they have worn down you can simply replace the rubber rather than the structure of the actual shoe being damaged.
Rub some protection onto your leather shoes to help make them water proof. Saddle soap or waterproof sprays are available, like the Kiwi super protector I have included here.
Suitable for all sorts of shoe it gives a good all round protection against dirt and water.
Keeping shoes clean will help to stop them rotting or becoming mis- shapened. So always make sure that mud and dirt are cleaned off as soon as possible and a shoe cleaner is rubbed in to reapply some protection to the shoe s well as make them shiny and bright again.
Polishing shoes on a regular basis will also help to prolong their life. I always marvelled at just how long my boyfriend's shoes would last and then he told me that he has always polished them, something his parents taught him to do.
Homemade Shoe Polish recipe - olive Oil and lemon juice. Mix the two together (one part lemon juice to two parts olive oil). Rub onto shoes with a clean cloth and allow to soak in for a few minutes before buffing off.
Salt stains on shoes can be a problem in the winter and can be difficult to remove if left. Use a clean cloth dipped in white vinegar to remove salt stains as soon as possible.
Always store shoes neatly over night. Shoes that are left lying around on the floor are liable to get damaged or scuffed.
Shoe racks are cheaply available (or if you re handy you could always make one yourself), or popping them in the bottom of your wardrobe or under your bed neatly is a good option.
If you wear the same pair of shoes everyday they will quickly wear out. Try to rotate your shoes so that each pair of shoes are allowed to breathe and air thoroughly between wearing. This will keep the inside of the shoes from rotting away from sweat etc.
After wearing sprinkle some baking soda inside the shoe to remove odour and any moisture. Don't forget to tap out in the morning before wearing them again, otherwise you may end up with a rather nasty sticky goo at the end of the day.
Always repair worn down heels before they get to the point where they cannot be repaired. This used to be my problem; I would always leave it too late.
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