By Shanuka Kadupitiyage | Published: 2:29 AM May 1 2021

By Shanuka Kadupitiyage 

I’m sure you already know that shoes are an  investment worth spending on. If you take our  advice and buy a good pair of footwear (it’s worth it),  then I’m pretty sure you want to get the best value  for your purchase.  

In that sense, a new pair of shoes is very similar to  a brand new car, fresh off the factory; the better you  take care of it, the more value you’re going to get in  return. Because of that, we’ve put together a list of  some of the basics you need to keep in mind if you  want to make sure your kicks still look ‘kickin’ for a  long time to come. 

Prevention is always better 

It’s not that hard to clean off that sauce you  accidentally spilt on your shoe the other day, but  it’s a lot easier to not spill it in the first place. Just  as it is in many situations, the best way to care for  your shoe is to prevent it from taking damage in the  first place. However, that doesn’t mean you should  be walking around with plastic bags on to protect  your shoes.  

One of the best ways you can protect your shoes  and make them last longer is by walking with  proper posture. If you tend to drag your feet or let  your heel scuff the ground as you take strides, you  might notice the sole wearing faster than it normally  should. Besides, having good posture means you’re  not putting unnecessary stress on your joints  either. 

Leather care 

Taking care of your pair of leather shoes doesn’t  need to break the bank. For the most part, all you’ll  need is a bristle brush, shoe polish (not the liquid), a soft cloth, shoe protector spray and saddle soap (if  you really want to splurge). 

 Make sure that your shoes are free of dust, mud  or grime first. If you want to give them a deep clean,  this is where the saddle soap comes to play. 

You’ll also need to regularly use wax polish to  protect the leather of the shoe. Don’t go near the  liquid instant-shine polish because those have  chemicals that could potentially harm the leather.  

If you want to get that glossy, military ‘spit-shine’  (no you don’t have to spit), just put a drop of water  on the front toe-cap and polish with a soft cloth.  You’ll thank me later. 

Casual affairs 

As for shoes more casual in nature, such as  sneakers, all you’ll need is mild soap, an old  toothbrush with super soft bristles and shoe  protector spray once again. Use the spray to keep  dirt, dust and grime from staining your shoe and  leaving it factory fresh. As for cleaning, I’m sure it’s  pretty obvious. 

Some shoes (like converse) can often be cleaned in  the washing-machine, but I recommend you avoid  that, both for your hygiene and the shoe’s longevity,  because it can possibly reduce your shoe’s longevity  and overall look. 

When you’re drying your shoes, remember that  direct sunlight is your enemy. They soften the  adhesives and can cause serious damage to your  shoe. Better to keep them away from direct sunlight  or too much heat and air dry them instead. 

When and when-not in use 

If you’re the one-shoe-for-every-occasion type of  person, you should know that wearing the same  

pair of shoes everyday isn’t the best idea for your  shoe’s longevity, especially to the overall comfort of  the shoe’s padding, which should be allowed some  time to return to its original state after being  crushed under your weight for a full day.  

You’ll also be letting all that sweat absorbed by  your feet, to dry out, reducing the chance of your  shoes starting to smell funky. 

You should also avoid wearing the same pair of  socks twice (we’ve all done it) since that can  contribute to foot odour as well. 

It’s best to alternate between your footwear and  let your shoes breathe after some use. However, you  shouldn’t leave your shoes unused for a long time  either. 

Shoes are meant to be used of course, not to be  kept on a display table. So don’t leave your shoes  lying around for too long. 

However, what are you going to do when you’re  not wearing your kicks? 

Well, one of the best things you can do is stuff  some newspapers inside. They are great at  absorbing sweat and help dry your shoes faster. 

The best place to store shoes when putting them  away is in their own box, so don’t throw it away.  Usually, your shoes come with special shoe trees  stuffed inside to prevent them from losing their  shape while in storage. Use them when storing  shoes to prevent any creasing or warping on the  original shape. 

If you really want to invest in footwear, I would  recommend buying special shoe-trees made of  aromatic wood, but that’s just an extra. 

Now, you’re ready to take better care of your  shoes. What other tips do you have in order to make  the best of your footwear? 

By Shanuka Kadupitiyage | Published: 2:29 AM May 1 2021

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