19 Must-Have Products for Your Shoe Shine Kit
Fans of genuine leather shoes certainly have one of these at home, but those who don sneakers or the season’s latest trends would also be wise to have one on hand: a shoe shine kit. You can keep your entire shoe wardrobe – and that of your family – in good nick with a few basic shoe care products. Some products are versatile, others specific, but the following all belong to a properly outfitted shoe shine kit.
- Stiff brush
- Polishing brush
- Application brush
- Suede brush
- Cleaning brush
- Polishing cloth
- Wet cleaning:
Clean & Care
- Dry cleaning:
- Cream for soles (Reinigungscreme)
- Carbon Pro
- 1909 Supreme Wax
- Leather Gel for seam
- 1909 Leather Lotion
- Colour care for smooth leather (Waterstop Colours)
- Colour care for suede (Nubuk & Textile)
- 1909 Wax Polish
- Sole Tonic (Sohlentonic)
Clean, Roughen, Polish: The Proper Brushes for Each Task
You’ve probably noticed that not all shoe brushes are created equal. Especially if you’ve ever tried to scrape off hardened bits of dirt with a fine goat hair brush. Dress shoes require more gentle handling than their robust outdoor counterparts, and suede requires more attention than smooth leather.
1. Cleaning Brushes
If your boots are caked in a layer of mud after an enjoyable trek through the forest, the first thing to do is let them dry. Then, go at them with a stiff brush suited to rugged footwear such as the CLEANING BRUSH. This will also help get rid of any lingering stones or pebbles that are stuck in the soles.
If your fine leather or textile shoes are dirty from everyday wear, brushing them with a softer CLEANING BRUSH suited to textile or leather will likely suffice. To keep the texture of suede shoes in top nick, on the other hand, it’s best to regularly brush them with a CREPE BRUSH. The smaller side bristles are perfect for cleaning hard-to-reach seams.
2. Care Brushes
The small APPLICATION BRUSH is the ideal tool for applying care products that are stored in tins or pots. Make sure to use a different brush for each cream polish or wax to avoid mixing colours.
Afterwards, make your fine leather shoes shine like new with the soft POLISHING BRUSH. This will also help to remove any excess colour care.
Mild to Intense Cleaning
Different cleaning methods are recommended depending on how dirty your shoes are. However, a well-equipped shoe shine kit is ready for anything.
1. Dry Cleaning
Using dry cleaning products is one of the most gentle ways to clean your shoes. In addition to simply brushing away surface dirt, you can try using special dry cleaners. SOFT GUM, for example, erases spots from sensitive materials like fine smooth leather, fabric and microfibre. The NUBUK BOX is perfect for gently cleaning suede and removing any lingering specks.
2. Wet Cleaning
BAMBOO LOTION is a great product for dealing with harder-to-remove stains whilst also nourishing the shoe material. Apply it to smooth leather using a POLISHING CLOTH and to suede using the softer CLEANING BRUSH.
If the dirt has already soaked deep into the material, a more substantial wet cleaning is likely necessary. CLEAN & CARE helps to remove those deep stubborn spots without drying out the leather. Afterwards, make sure you let your shoes rest and completely dry.
Cleaning Your Soles
Light coloured soles in particular require special cleaning to keep them looking like new. The CLEANING CREAM is perfect for cleaning sneaker midsoles or soles made of crepe.
Make sure you leave room in your at-home shoe shine kit for various waterproofing products. Not only do these help protect your shoes from moisture, but they also prevent dirt from soaking into the material.
CARBON PRO is an all-rounder for smooth leather, suede and fabric shoes as well as shoes with special waterproof membranes. If you have a pair of shoes made of fine leather that requires a product containing wax, try 1909 SUPREME WAX. You can clean and protect seams from moisture with LEATHER GEL.
The Final Step: Shoe Care
So now that your shoes are clean and protected against further damage, they likely need some nourishment. This is especially true after a wet cleaning. Applying 1909 LEATHER LOTION will help prevent leather shoes from drying out and cracking. Even if you use wax instead of cream polish, the lotion gives the material the moisture it needs to stay smooth and supple.
Don’t forget: Leather soles also require protection and care! Applying SOHLENTONIC will waterproof your soles and help them stay flexible.
Colour Care with Cream Polish or Wax
Applying lotion and tonics will certainly make your shoes look fresher, but they’ll likely also benefit from some additional colour care. Keep a collection of the most common colours in your kit or at least invest in the colours you most often wear.
We recommend using WATERSTOP COLOURS for smooth leather and NUBUK & TEXTILE products for suede. Both of these products nourish the shoes whilst also brightening their colour.
If achieving a high-gloss finish is at the top of your list, try using 1909 WAX POLISH for your smooth leather shoes. Wax not only gets shoes shining, but also offers a layer of protection from the outside world.