Patent Leather Shoes Care and Cleaning

Patent leather can be genuine leather or manmade, but this hard, glossy material can really add a special touch to evening formal wear and original designer footwear.

With its unique high gloss, patent leather does need a little extra care. All your Q & A are listed here to keep your patent leather looking perfect.

How do you wash patent leather shoes?
All you need is a little soap and a wet cloth. Wet your cloth, apply a dab of soap, and then rub. Wipe clean with a fresh damp cloth. You can also try Aquila, which is a special leather cleaner designed to dissolve dirt and prevent the effects of chlorine and minerals.

What are the basics for polishing patent leather shoes?
All you really need to polish a pair of patent leather shoes is a clean cloth and a little special patent leather cleaner. Wipe off dust with the cloth, and then apply a special patent leather cleaning cream. After the cream soaks in, you can use another soft clean cloth to buff your shoes to a nice patina.

Tip: Be sure not to use a brush to apply patent leather cream to your shoes. Brushes can damage the shiny outer layer.

How can I care for patent leather shoes on a day-to-day basis?

Many commercial products have been developed for daily upkeep. After cleaning your patent leather shoes of debris (see above), dab a little product on a cloth and use it per instructions. Useful products are made by Collonil, such as Clean & Care and Stain Remover Spray.

You can also shine up your shoes a little with a simple mineral oil treatment. If you put a little mineral oil on a clean lint-free cloth, you can rub out many minor scuffs after a day’s wear. For truly professional care, you can also apply a silicone shine product, which will prevent future scuff marks and won’t look greasy.

How can I fix major scuffs?
Scuffs on patent leather should never be treated with shoe polish. It won’t work as it does on your usual leather shoes, so if you’re fighting a scuff, try these techniques instead.

  • Faux patent leather: Take a few cotton balls and apply acetone nail polish remover in gentle strokes all over your shoe. After it dries, the scuffs will be far less apparent. Use a patent leather restorer, such as one from Kiwi, to shine your patent leather shoes and protect against further scuffs.
  • Shiny leather: Vegetable oil can help increase the shine on your shoes.

How should I store my shoes to protect them?

Be careful with your patent leather shoes when you’re not wearing them. Storing them in a pile on the floor simply won’t do so to protect your shoes always put them away spotless and shined. Insert shoe horns to ensure that your shoes keep their shape, because patent leather that’s bent or creased won’t look quite as shiny. Put your patent leather shoes in a clean shoe box with a sheet of tissue between them to keep them from rubbing together.