Nubuck and Suede Shoes Cleaning Guide


Unlike regular leather shoes, nubuck and suede shoes need a different care regimen. In fact, they need more delicate care than leather or any of your other shoes. Nubuck and suede have a different texture and appearance which means that the regular care and protection steps won’t apply to them.

Apart from their delicate nature, many people still have at least a pair of nubuck or suede shoes because of its versatile style which can be used on either casual or semi-formal events. Make your special pair last longer and look new longer with this simple cleaning guide.

Difference between Suede and Nubuck

Nubuck leather is usually made from the external part of calfskin. Its surface is sanded until it reaches a velvety texture similar to suede. Since Nubuck is made from external skin of animal, it is more durable, thicker and more expensive as well.

Suede, on the other hand, is made from the inner skin of animal. Unlike nubuck, suede leather is thinner, softer, yet more versatile than other leather types. However, it is not as tough as nubuck simply because of its nature. Relatively, suede require more sensitive care than nubuck and other leather.

Waterproof First

When you first got your shoes, be sure to waterproof them first before wearing them outside. Water and moisture are really big enemies of suede and nubuck. You wouldn’t know when your shoes will get wet when you go outside that’s why it is best to waterproof it first using this suede shoe protector for extra barrier against the damaging elements.

Store on Shoe Trees

If you want to keep your shoes at their perfect shape, invest in a good shoe tree where you’ll hang your unused shoes. Cedar or pine shoe trees are the most recommended because of their natural deodorant and anti-microbial properties that help keep your shoes smelling fresh when you wear them.

Deal with Stains Immediately

There are several factors that could stain your footwear – from mud, oil, grease, etc. If you’re shoes got soaked in muddy water, simply dry the footwear overnight and brush the surface to remove the dried dirt. For more severe stains like oil and grease, you could apply a suede eraser with a stiff-bristled brush to get it out. However, if it simply won’t come out with natural methods, don’t force it. Take it to a professional cleaner instead to avoid damaging your shoes.

Rotate Your Shoes

Another simple trick to make your shoes last long is to rotate them. Don’t use the same shoe for 2 or 3 days in a row. Give it time to breathe and dry for a few days before using it again. Also, be sure to use a shoe horn when you find it hard to wear your shoes instead of just forcing your feet in.

Suede and nubuck shoes are really a perfect addition to your shoe collection. Make them last long and look their best by following those care tips mentioned above.


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