What Are the Best Practices for Maintaining Suede Shoes in Wet Climates?

Suede shoes are a classic style staple that can elevate any outfit. This luxurious material, a type of leather with a napped finish, can be quite challenging to maintain, especially in wet climates. But don’t fret, we have put together a comprehensive guide to help you keep your suede shoes in pristine condition, even in the most challenging weather conditions.

Knowing what steps to take, which products to use, and how to properly care for your suede shoes, can make all the difference. This guide will cover how to dry your suede shoes correctly, clean off wet stains, and avoid water damage. But that’s not all; we will also provide a step-by-step guide on the best way to brush your suede shoes to maintain their style and durability. So, let’s step right in!

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Protecting Your Suede Shoes Before Wear

Before you step out in your stylish suede shoes, it’s crucial to take preventive measures to protect them from the harsh elements brought by wet climates. This step is all about prevention, and it all starts with using a suede protector spray.

A handy tool in the realm of suede shoe care is the suede protector spray. It serves as a barrier against water, dirt, and stains, keeping your shoes looking their best for longer. To use it, simply hold the spray about 15cm away from the shoes and spray evenly over the suede. Allow the spray to dry before wearing the shoes.

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Another useful trick is to use a waterproofing spray. Many of these sprays are specially designed for leather and suede shoes, providing an extra layer of protection from water and stains.

Drying Your Suede Shoes Correctly

Caught in a sudden downpour? Don’t panic; your suede shoes can survive this. The key is to dry your suede shoes correctly to prevent damaging the material.

Remove any excess water immediately with a dry cloth. Next, crumple up some newspaper and stuff it into your shoes. The newspaper will absorb the moisture from inside the shoes, helping them to dry evenly and maintain their shape.

Never, ever use a heater or hairdryer to speed up the drying process. The intense heat can cause the suede to become brittle and crack. Instead, let your shoes dry naturally in a well-ventilated area.

Cleaning Off Wet Stains from Your Suede Shoes

After your shoes have dried, it’s time to tackle those wet stains. For this process, you will need a suede eraser and brush, both essential tools for suede shoe care.

Begin by using the suede eraser to gently rub at the stains. The eraser works by shedding particles into the suede, which helps lift the dirt and grime off the surface. For tougher stains, you may need to apply a bit more pressure.

Next, use a suede brush to restore the nap of the suede. Always brush in the direction of the fibers, not against them. This step will help to lift the fibers of the suede, restoring its original texture and sheen.

Avoiding Water Damage to Your Suede Shoes

Prevention is always better than cure, and that goes for protecting your suede shoes from water damage too. As we mentioned earlier, a suede protector spray is a must-have. But there are additional steps you can take to safeguard your shoes.

Avoid wearing your suede shoes in heavy rain or snow if possible. If you do get caught in bad weather, take the time to dry and clean your shoes properly to prevent lasting damage.

Store your suede shoes in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. Excess humidity can cause damage to suede over time, while sunlight can cause the color to fade.

The Best Way to Brush Your Suede Shoes

Brushing your suede shoes regularly is an integral part of their care routine. It helps to keep the suede looking fresh, removes minor stains, and restores the nap of the suede.

The best type of brush to use is a brush specifically designed for suede. These are typically made with brass bristles, which are tough enough to clean the suede without damaging it.

When brushing, always brush in the direction of the grain, not against it. This helps to lift the fibers and restore the nap.

Remember, the key to maintaining your suede shoes in wet climates is regular care and attention. From drying your shoes properly to brushing them regularly, taking these steps will ensure your suede shoes stay in top shape, no matter the weather. Now, go ahead and flaunt your impeccable suede style, rain or shine!

Utilizing White Vinegar and Shoe Trees for Deep Cleaning

There are times when regular cleaning methods won’t work, especially when you’re dealing with stubborn stains or deeply soaked suede. In such cases, you might want to consider using white vinegar and shoe trees.

White vinegar is a potent cleaning agent that works wonders on stubborn stains. It’s especially effective at removing salt stains, which are common if you live in a wet or snowy climate. To use this method, simply wet a clean cloth in a mixture of equal parts white vinegar and water, wring out the excess fluid, then gently rub the stained area. Once the surface is clean, let your shoes dry naturally.

Shoe trees, on the other hand, are essential tools in maintaining the shape of your shoes, particularly when drying wet suede. They help to keep your shoes’ form, preventing the suede from shrinking or warping when drying. For wet shoes, opt for cedar shoe trees as they do a great job of soaking up moisture from inside the shoes.

However, be sure to insert the shoe trees gently to avoid stretching the wet suede. Also, remember to remove them once the shoes are dry to prevent the suede from over-stretching.

Steps for Conditioning and Storing Your Suede Shoes

After all of the cleaning, drying, and brushing, it’s essential to condition your suede shoes to keep them soft and supple. This step is crucial as it helps to restore the oils the suede might have lost during the cleaning process.

You can condition your suede shoes using a suede conditioning product. When applied, these products infiltrate the fibers, nourishing them and preventing the suede from becoming dry and brittle.

As for storage, always keep your suede shoes in a cool, dry place and avoid storing them in plastic bags, which can cause humidity to build up and harm the suede. Instead, use shoe bags made of breathable material. Additionally, consider storing your shoes with cedar shoe trees inserted to maintain their shape and absorb any residual moisture.


Maintaining suede shoes in wet climates may seem like a daunting task, but with the right care and attention, it’s entirely feasible. It all boils down to following a few essential steps; protecting your shoes before wear, drying them correctly if they get wet, cleaning off stains, avoiding water damage where possible, and maintaining a regular brushing regime.

Using tools and products like a suede brush, suede eraser, suede protector, white vinegar, and shoe trees can make a significant difference in preserving the look and durability of your suede shoes. Whether you’re dealing with shoes, boots, or any other suede footwear, these practices will help keep them looking their best.

So, don’t let the wet climate deter you from embracing the luxe and timeless appeal of suede. With these best practices at your disposal, you’re ready to step out in style, come rain or shine!