Ever wondered why you get such a kick out of buying a new pair of kicks? According to experts, shoes qualify as a collector’s item. When we buy a new pair, it lights up a specific area in the brain’s prefrontal cortex. But what doesn’t light up anything in the prefrontal cortex is seeing your favorite pair of sneaks losing their crisp looks. Fortunately, with a little shoe cleaning know-how, and the right sneaker care kit, you can tend to your kicks and get them looking fire again in no time.
Besides looking fresh, regular sneaker care is also great for maintaining sneaker value. However, before you start, you need to know what to use, as well as what to avoid when cleaning sneakers. Continue reading to find out everything you need to know about how to clean sneakers.
A Bristled Brush
The first thing you need for cleaning your shoes is a bristled brush. The medium bristled kind is generally the best. Too hard, and the bristle may drive the dirt deeper into the shoe fabric, damage the finish, or not be able to get into the seams.
Too soft, and the bristles might have any effect on the compacted dirt.
Besides a larger brush, you might also want to use a toothbrush to get into the very hard-to-reach spots on your sneakers.
Brushes are an essential part of a sneaker care kit. When it comes time to clean your kicks, the first thing you need to do is brush off any dry or loose dirt.
Once this is done, you can move on gently scrubbing more stubborn areas using the brush or cloth and a mild cleaning solution.
A Microfiber Cloth
While a brush is good for getting into corners, sole designs, and seams, if you have leather uppers on your sneakers, you don’t want to be scrubbing away at these with a hard-bristled brush.
Instead, these areas are best cleaned with a microfiber towel. If you have mesh materials in your sneakers or anything that is too sensitive for scrubbing, a microfiber cloth is what you should use.
Mild Cleaning Solution
The next thing you’ll want to include in your sneaker care kit is a cleaning agent. The key with cleaning agents and sneakers is to keep things gentle and mild. You don’t want to destroy the finish on leather uppers or rubber soles, and neither do you want to accidentally bleach or weaken fabric panels.
Always make sure you have a mild soap. Stay away from detergents, as they can be harsh, and instead opt for a bar of mild bath soap or a few drops of dishwashing liquid mixed with water.
When washing sneakers, it’s never a good idea to soak or submerge them completely in water. Instead, you want to clean each component of the shoes separately to avoid damage or warping.
Besides soap, brushes, and a cloth, you should also invest in some protection spray for your sneaker care kit. Protection spray can greatly enhance sneaker longevity if you apply it after cleaning your kicks.
There are a number of sneaker protection spray brands on the market, but a cult favorite is Crep Protect.
Crep Protect’s protection spray creates an invisible, yet clear barrier against dirt and stains. It stops liquids from absorbing into your shoes, which greatly reduces staining and dirt build-up.
If you are a sneakerhead, you know that sinking feeling that comes when you spill soda or sauce on your favorite crisp pair of kicks. However, if you protect your sneakers with a protection spray like Crep Protect’s, you can rest easy knowing your coke whites aren’t history.
So, make sure you stock up on some Crep Protection spray. The Crep Protection spray kit on our site also comes with a premium bristle brush and a microfiber cloth, which means you won’t need to buy these separately.
Things to Keep in Mind When Cleaning Sneakers
Once you’ve gotten your supplies together, it’s time to start cleaning up those sneaks. However, there are a few important things to keep in mind before you get started.
Don’t Ever Put Your Sneakers in the Washing Machine
Firstly, don’t ever wash your sneakers in the washing machine. The soaking and tumbling can seriously warp your sneaks, leaving them misshapen and anything but crisp looking.
Don’t Sun Dry Sneakers
Once you’ve washed your favorite sneakers, the next thing is to get them dry. After all, not everyone has 50 pairs of mint whites waiting in the wings like Jerry Seinfeld.
Another important sneaker-cleaning-don’t is drying your freshly cleaned kicks in the sun. The sun can bleach canvas colors, and crack both real and faux leather. This is why a lot of guides on how to store expensive sneakers will tell you to keep them in the dark.
Instead of sun drying, place your shoes in a warm or ventilated room to dry.
Stay Away From Hot Air and Hot Water
It can be tempting to take a hairdryer to washed and damp sneakers, but this is not a good idea, even on low settings.
Hot air and hot water are no-gos for sneakers. This is because the heat can damage the adhesives used to glue the uppers’ panels and soles.
Get Your Sneaker Care Kit Together and Start Crisping up Those Kicks
Now that you know what goes into a sneaker care kit, all you need to do is get yourself a good brush, microfiber cloths, and some protective spray. Protective spray can go a long way in boosting sneaker longevity, so make sure you pick some up from our online shop.
Are you also looking for some new sneakers to add to your collection? If so, we stock a wide range of OG sneaker brands, including Air Jordan, Yeezy, Nike, Adidas, and more.
Check out our hot sellers section to see which kicks are flying off the shelves this season.