There is nothing more satisfying then a clean pair of shoes. We all want to keep our shoes looking good. However, it can be expensive when you consider all the products out there devoted to keep out shoes nice and clean.
Now, I’m not saying these products don’t work in fact if you would like to see what I like to use check out this link to Amazon on some shoe cleaning products that are still inexpensive.
But sometimes we enjoy a good hack.
I took a look around and tried out this DIY hacks on shoe cleaning and I have to admit I was very impress.
Frist it must be said that not all shoes are equal. What I mean is you cant go taking a glop of toothpaste to your suede chukkas and expect that to make them look new, conversely you don’t want to go and take some shoe polish to those fresh Jordans. I know this seems like common sense, but I can tell you I have seen some dumb hacks that you should never try.
If you want to know how to clean leather here is an article you can look up.
Now keeping our footwear looking fresh and clean can be challenging with all that our shoes go through, from spills, scratches and scrapes. These things are inevitable; however, we have more tools at our disposal then you might think.
When it comes to sneakers, I found what restores whiteness best (especially on a budget) is using toothpaste. Sure, it whitens your teeth, but will it do the same for your shoes? Absolutely.
Disclaimer: Remember not all shoes are created equal. Toothpaste does well for rubber soles, but if you have fabric shoes you may want to be mindful of the type of toothpaste. Honestly, I found that the generic brands really work the best.
Using a prescription brand (yeah there is prescription toothpaste) may have chemicals that can end up scrubbing the stain deeper into the fabric. Also, if you have white shoes stay away from colored toothpaste, this will stain it even more.
To Clean White Shoes with Toothpaste
Use a non-gel white toothpaste and an old toothbrush when you’ll apply the toothpaste to your dirty shoes, working in circular motions on your extra-dirty spots. Once you have worked the paste into the fabric of the shoes, let it sit for about ten minutes. Use a damp towel to wipe the toothpaste off your shoe; repeat the process if necessary.
If you are not sure about the brand of toothpaste and the effect it may have on your sneakers. Try first putting a small amount of it on a single spot. Different types of toothpaste have different ingredients, some of which can damage your shoes. Most toothpaste will be okay to use, but you're better off testing them first.
Give it about 20 minutes and wipe it with a damp cloth. If it didn’t stain the shoe, you are good to go.
Next, apply a small amount to the toothbrush. There really isn’t any need to put a whole glop on the brush, you will just cause a big pasty mess—trust me. Also, too much will damage the fabric of the shoes.
Use about half of what you would use personally
If you have a dirty shoe You can also use a cleaning pad to scrub them. Use a cleaning sponge to quickly clean your shoes or a wire brush to rigorously clean very dirty canvas shoes or sneakers. Once you have the paste on your shoes star scrubbing.
How hard really depends on the color, and material. I found that darker colors take a bit more brushing. So, apply enough pressure. For lighter colors you want to be gentler.
Harder strokes may scratch the fabric and do more damage. After applying the paste, you want to wait about ten minutes. Then get a damp cloth and wipe off the excess toothpaste. Repeat often for desire results.
Cleaning White Shoes with Baking Soda
This method works best with sneakers that have a white canvas. It may be tempting to just throw them in the washer and dryer, but don’t do this. It’s a sure-fire way to ruin your shoes causing them to fray or the sole to separate from the upper. This is what I recommend instead:
Three things: baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, and water. Here is what you wanna do:
mix about 1 tablespoon of baking soda
1/2 tablespoon hydrogen peroxide
1/2 tablespoon of warm water (you can use 1 tablespoon if you don't have any hydrogen peroxide
Mix this to you have a thick paste. Next using a scrub brush or toothbrush and apply the paste directly on the stain. Scrub in a circular fashion, remember for light colors don’t scrub so hard
Let the solution dry on the shoes for about 30 minutes, once its dry whip off the excess with a damp rag. Repeat this for about two times. More stubborn stains, such as coffee, blood, or paint may require multiple applications, and the peroxide-baking soda solution will be slightly more effective.
Experimenting with baking soda I also found that vinegar is a good substitute to peroxide. But use white vinegar. Follow the same instruction when it comes to applying the solutions, but the difference is after you apply the solution place the shoes outside for about 4 hours
This will cause the solution to create a dry flake substance on the shoe. Once the paste is dried fully, clap the shoes together over a trashcan to knock the dried paste free, and use a dry toothbrush or scrub brush to remove any remainder.
Deodorize Your Shoes with Baking Soda
Another problem your favorite white kicks can encounter is unpleasant odor. Everyone knows funky shoe smell, and it can be embarrassing. Fortunately, baking soda is your friend for both the outside of your white shoes and the inside. Baking soda absorbs odors, something you might already know about from putting a box in your fridge and freezer. It can do the same thing to deodorize your shoes.
Measure 1-2 tablespoons of baking soda for each shoe. You need enough to cover the entire insole. Bigger shoes may require additional baking soda.
Pour the baking soda into the heel of each shoe.
Tilt the shoe forward and backward and shake from side to side to evenly distribute the baking soda in the shoe. It’s okay if there are lumps and clumps. Use a liberal amount to ensure adequate coverage.
Wait a few hours, preferably overnight. The baking soda will kill odor-causing bacteria and absorb odors. Extra-stinky shoes may require 24 hours.
Over a trashcan or the sink, tap the shoe to remove the remaining baking soda from the inside. Shake to remove as much as possible. If a small amount remains, it won’t hurt you or your shoes.
ARM &Hammer™ baking soda works really well you can get some here