How to Clean Your Suede Sperrys

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Sperry suede shoes are made out of stain-resistant and water-resistant suede leather. Although they are resistant to staining, these shoes still require special care to keep them looking clean. Suede is a type of soft leather with raised fibers, known as nap. Care must be taken to avoid damaging the nap and ruining the suede. Using gentle pressure and mild cleaning agents will prevent damage from occurring. Since suede is made from animal skin, keeping it away from high heat and long-term exposure to direct sunlight will also prevent damage from occurring.

Things You'll Need

  • Absorbent cloth
  • Suede bar
  • White vinegar
  • Eraser
  • Toothbrush
  • Suede brush
  • Terrycloth towel
  • Newspaper

Clean up any liquid spills with an absorbent cloth. Blot the liquid with the cloth and avoid rubbing the suede to prevent damage to the nap.

Remove dirt from the suede with a suede bar. Suede bars are soft rubber bars specifically designed for removing dirt from suede without damaging it. Dampen the suede bar and gently rub it against the dirt until it is removed from the shoe.

Apply a dab of white vinegar to an absorbent cloth. Gently rub the cloth onto the soiled spot on the suede in a circular motion until the stain is removed. Don't scrub the fabric as it can damage the fibers.

Allow the shoes to dry away from direct heat or sunlight. Too much heat or sunlight may fade the suede and ruin the fabric. Place the shoes in a dry, well-ventilated place and allow them to dry overnight before wearing them.

Rub the dirt off with an eraser. Gently rub the eraser against the dirt in a back and forth motion until the dirt comes off.

Brush the suede with a toothbrush, suede brush or terrycloth towel after cleaning to raise the nap. Hold the shoe in a stream of steam vapor from a tea kettle to dampen the fabric, and brush the suede gently with the brush, towel or toothbrush.

Stuff the shoes with newspaper while they dry overnight. This helps the shoe retain its shape while wet. Remove the newspaper once the shoe has thoroughly dried.

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