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Thread: Shoe cleaning advice for a first timer?

  1. #1
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    Shoe cleaning advice for a first timer?

    Hello,

    Recently, I had to wear my AE Fifth Avenues in Dark Brown in a slightly muddy and salted environment. It has just snowed at a conference I was attending, and by the time I arrived, the parking lot had already been salted. I made a short walk from the car to the conference center, but did end up getting some mud and salt on the shoes. I immediately went into a restroom, took a wet paper towel and got rid of any surface stains.

    I had already followed the advice on how to prep your new shoes. I applied a coat of Renovateur, followed by a coat of Saphir Medaille d'Or Cream Polish, followed by a thin coat of Saphir Medaille d'Or Pate de Luxe Wax Polish and then applied a mirror shine on the toe cap using a combination of Pate de Luxe and Mirror Gloss.

    When I arrived home, I took the shoes off and took off any loose dirt with a horsehair brush. Now I'm a bit stumped as to how to clean the shoe. It doesn't have residual stains, to the naked eye.

    A couple of questions:

    1. Is Renovateur a good cleaner in this case, or should I look for a saddle soap? I also have Renomat available to me.
    2. What's the best way to clean on top of a mirror shine? As I understand, Renovateur and Cream Polishes won't penetrate the wax layer.


    Any responses and other tips that you guys might have would be very much appreciated!

  2. #2
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    I don't understand what you are cleaning if it doesn't show any dirt or stains.

    In my experience, if you have even a thin layer of wax over the shoe (e.g. you used a cream polish or Renovateur or both), there shouldn't be a problem.

    My issue has always been getting the shoes soaking wet which seems to create the classic "salt-stain" pattern. In that case, I've used vinegar followed by lots of conditioner.

    I don't think you will have a problem. I've walked straight through mud unprotected and still was able to fix the shoes up as long as I cleaned them the same day.

    Edit: one thing I would warn against is trying to clean out something you can't see. I've personally caused more problems with shoes like that than any actual mud has caused.
    Last edited by ianr; January 15th, 2020 at 07:31 PM.

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    Check YouTube. Tons of shoe shine videos.

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    Wax is an effective sealant and protects the underlying leather from the salt, just as it does for a car's paint job. Removing the salt promptly as you did is sufficient when the leather is properly protected.

    At most you might renew the wax layer; the brushing will have removed more of that microscopically thin layer than dissolved salt which didn't get the chance to settle.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ianr View Post
    My issue has always been getting the shoes soaking wet which seems to create the classic "salt-stain" pattern. In that case, I've used vinegar followed by lots of conditioner.
    This ^^ is the problem I have with my AE McAllister in walnut. I wore them on a day when we had some snow. A stroll through a salt infested part of the street, something I did not recognize until I arrived home and boom! Instant stain. I have been thus far unable to clean the stain off the shoe. I am now thinking of taking them to a 'pro' to see if he can fix the damage I've done.

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    Sounds like you are good. You take better care of your shoes than I do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by animeking View Post
    Hello,

    Recently, I had to wear my AE Fifth Avenues in Dark Brown in a slightly muddy and salted environment. It has just snowed at a conference I was attending, and by the time I arrived, the parking lot had already been salted. I made a short walk from the car to the conference center, but did end up getting some mud and salt on the shoes. I immediately went into a restroom, took a wet paper towel and got rid of any surface stains.

    I had already followed the advice on how to prep your new shoes. I applied a coat of Renovateur, followed by a coat of Saphir Medaille d'Or Cream Polish, followed by a thin coat of Saphir Medaille d'Or Pate de Luxe Wax Polish and then applied a mirror shine on the toe cap using a combination of Pate de Luxe and Mirror Gloss.

    When I arrived home, I took the shoes off and took off any loose dirt with a horsehair brush. Now I'm a bit stumped as to how to clean the shoe. It doesn't have residual stains, to the naked eye.

    A couple of questions:

    1. Is Renovateur a good cleaner in this case, or should I look for a saddle soap? I also have Renomat available to me.
    2. What's the best way to clean on top of a mirror shine? As I understand, Renovateur and Cream Polishes won't penetrate the wax layer.


    Any responses and other tips that you guys might have would be very much appreciated!
    I'm not an expert at this, but I do have a friend owning a pair of similar shoes. I know for a fact that he is using Renovateur and does not have any issues whatsoever.

    Just as someone mentione above look also for some youtube videos there are quite a few available to the topic and you'll see what fits you best.

    I hope it helps.

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