Caring for Suede Boots

How to Care for Suede Boots

In the last 6 months I’ve added two suede ankle boots that I super duper love and have been wearing frequently.  You’ve heard me talk about them a lot.  One is the low-cut, low-heel Franco Sarto pair (THESE) and the other other is the pair above that I just talked about last week (THESE).

One quick note: The shoes above are nearly out in all sizes in this “Sesame Suede” color, BUT there is a grey version that is super duper similar to my favorite, very old yet still most versatile dip-in-the-front booties.  Find the grey pair HERE stocked in most sizes.  They are very comfortable with a padded footbed and surprisingly walkable heel.

Shop for the Look:
Top: Nordstrom (exact in other colors, similar)
Cardigan: Nordstrom (similar, similarsimilar)
Jeans: Paige Denim (similar–my current favorites; I wear size 6, similar, exact)
Boots: Nordstrom (exact)
Bag: Nordstrom (exact–sold out, similar–sale for $20)
Watch: (similar)
Necklace: c/o Dear Mushka (similar)

Because I’ve been talking about suede booties, I’ve gotten several questions about how to care for them.  And honestly, because I live in a mild climate and because my older “suede” shoes were not real suede that needed proper care, I hadn’t really thought about it!  But, thanks to your questions I realized I’d better learn to care for these, or I’m gonna be REALLY sad if they ever get ruined!  Since both of my favorite suede boots come from Nordstrom, today I’m partnering with them to talk about how I’m going to care for the awesome shoes I find there!

There’s tons of resources out there on how to care for suede boots, so this one is not going to be exhaustive.  Based on what I said above about not realizing I even needed to care for them, it should be obvious that I’m no expert.  Instead, I’m just writing this because I know a lot of you recently bought your first pair of ankle boots, some of which I’m assuming are suede, and I wanted to put it on your radar to start caring for them in case it’s not already!  Mostly I just want to share some research I’ve done, what I’m going to try with my boots, and then hear from some of you any expertise you have to offer.

After some research and comparing a few different sites, here’s the light version and where I’m starting:

1.  I ordered a Suede Water and Stain Repellent Spray (HERE) to “waterproof” my shoes.  I haven’t done it yet because since I’ve been wearing them without any protectant they’ve gotten a little dirty and I want to clean them first.  That brings me to number 2…

2.  I ordered a Suede Brush and Suede Eraser (HERE) to clean off some dirt and scuff marks before I spray them.  A Suede Brush should brush out many scuff marks and dirt as well as “re-fluff” and groom the suede so it looks better.  If the Suede Brush doesn’t do the trick on tougher scuff marks or stains, that’s where the Suede Eraser should come in handy.  I’ve been waiting for mine to arrive, but then I learned last night that Benson already has the exact same set, so I’ll just use his instead!

3.  I’ll use the Suede Eraser and Brush to clean the scuff marks, then use the Suede Brush before and after spraying with repellent to “fluff” and groom the suede.

4.  I’m contemplating buying cedar shoetrees (like THESE) for my suede booties.  The leather and lining of our shoes can absorb our sweat which causes the shoe to get misshapen, odorous, or even deteriorate.  The shoetrees wick away moisture, restore the shape of the shoe, and help eliminate odor to help the shoes last longer.  I know most men use cedar shoetrees with their dress shoes, but I don’t hear of many women doing it.  Can anyone offer advice on this?

If you need more care than that, like you have serious stains on your shoes or they’ve gotten really wet, or if your shoes are really old and you need to restore and liven back up the material, there are several sites with lots of tips for how to care for them HERE, HERE, and HERE.

Most things I’ve read say with proper care you can wear suede shoes nearly year round, but as one site says, you should probably avoid wearing them “at the end of winter, when there is a bunch of half-melted, dirty, slushy snow outside…”  If anyone here has experience with what kinds of weather circumstances you’ve worn suede shoes in, let us know!

Given all that, sounds like some brushing and spraying should help your suede boots go a long way!  Since you don’t have to fear wearing suede anymore, here are a few suede boot options!  🙂  Personally, I’m going to try THIS pair of knee-high Lucky boots that are on major sale!

Shop for the Look:
one  |  two  |  three
four  |  five  |  six
seven  |  eight  |  nine
Huge thanks to Nordstrom’s collaboration on this post!
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