How to Look After Your Leather Shoes

Written by Simon

5th July 2019

Save your Shoes | Save Money | Save the Environment

Some of my earliest and happiest memories are working with my Grandfather in his Shoe Repair shop in Mitcham Lane in the 70’s. Those were the days when almost everyone visited the Shoe Repairer on a regular basis and before the throw-away society we now live in!

Nowadays, over 300 million pairs of shoes go to landfill each year in the UK alone.

But it seems that things are changing again. Economic pressures and environmental awareness are benefitting this traditional trade and people are now becoming more conscious of saving money and reducing waste. 

We want you to know how to look after your leather shoes so that they can serve you well for years to come. With the right care, a good quality pair of shoes can last up to 30 years! So, with that said – here are 4 tips to help save your shoes, money, and the environment…

1. Keep Them Dry

To understand the importance of leather care, you first need to think of leather like your own skin – only that it’s no longer alive and does not have a body to take care of it naturally (Justin explains this well here).

Leather is a porous material which can get easily damaged in wet weather. But, drying them next to any source of direct heat – such as fires or radiators – will cause the leather to lose its natural moisture, making it brittle and liable to cracking. 

Should you get caught in the rain, you can stuff your shoes with some newspaper or tissue paper and allow them to dry out naturally.

2. Use a Shoe Tree

Using a shoe tree on your leather shoes helps maintain their shape and appearance. Good quality shoe trees, such as those made with unfinished cedar wood, will absorb residual moisture in your shoes and keep them fresh. One pair will be enough as you would only need to place them in your shoes for a day after wear. Oh, and don’t forget to use a shoe horn when putting on your shoes – it helps maintain the shape of the back.

3. Apply Cream or Wax Polish

After wearing your shoes, they should be wiped clean before you apply a good quality cream or wax polish. This can protect the leather from cracking and retain their shine. Once the polish dries, remove any excess with a soft brush and finish with a lint-free cloth. For suede leathers, you will need to remove any dirt once they are dry and use a suede brush. There’s no need to use cream or polish with patent leather shoes – just clean them with a clean, damp, lint-free cloth.

If you are looking for high quality leather care products, come and visit us in the car park of Currys PC World and Homebase in Kingstown! We sell wax, polish and brushes, all at great prices.

4. Visit a Shoe Repair Shop

Many people ask: “Can modern fashion shoes be repaired?”

Well, the answer is a definite YES! In fact, over 90% of shoes can be repaired. 

A professional shoe repairer, traditionally known as a cobbler, can help lengthen the lifespan of your leather shoes. Whether that’s through protecting or repairing them, or providing the right leather care products, shoes can retain their quality over time with the help of the right hands.

At Keyishoes in Carlisle, we take pride in the quality of our shoe care and repairs.  From stiletto heels to full leather soles on a good quality pair of Goodyear welted gent’s shoes, there aren’t many repairs we can’t do! 

We also have an excellent service for repairing uppers; including new back-linings, seam repairs, buckle replacements, new elastic gussets, and zip repairs or replacements.


We hope you will find these tips helpful for looking after your leather shoes. With proper, effective leather care, your shoes can keep their quality for a much longer time, even 30 years! This means you won’t have to throw them away and shop around looking for new ones; saving you time, money, and the environment too!

If you’re looking for high-quality leather care products and shoe repair services, why not consider Keyishoes in Carlisle? We can provide all these services, all at great prices.

Go on, seek your local shoe-saviour to save your shoes and money! 

Take a look at some of the products we stock:

Cherry Blossom Shoe Polish

Perfect for protecting and restoring shine for smooth and patent leathers.

Cherry Blossom Ultra Repel

Waterproofing spray for fabric, suede and smooth leathers.

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