Cleaning Suede Shoes and Garments: What to Do and What Not To Do

cleaning suede shoes garments

Suede, like leather, is a luxurious fabric that is often used for high-end shoes, shirts, and jackets. Suede is actually the underside of leather with the flesh side rubbed until it is velvety, which results in a beautiful texture. However, suede is known to be a dust and dirt magnet. Because cleaning suede can be tricky at best, take note of these do’s and don’ts when it comes to cleaning suede.

Do: Create a Suede Cleaning Kit

Because water can ruin suede, it’s a good idea to make a suede cleaning kit to keep in your home. Stock your kit with the following items:

  • Protective spray: Before you initially wear your suede garments or shoes, it’s a good idea to treat your suede with a protective spray.This helps protect the material from the elements.
  • Suede stone: A rubber suede stone can help remove dirt. However, take caution as suede is delicate; avoid scrubbing vigorously. Pro tip: rub the stone in the same direction.
  • Suede brush: Brushes are used after the stone to restore the soft buttery texture of the suede.
  • Terry cloth rags: Used (dry) for daily wiping.

Do: Daily Maintenance

Lightly brush off your suede shoes (or jacket) after every wear. Although you might not notice it at first, dust can start to accumulate even just after one day. Lightly dusting off your suede gear with the terry cloth rag can go a long way in preserving the look and color of your suede.

Do: Soak Up Moisture

If you’ve got a wet spot, such as a splash from a puddle, soak up the moisture with a terry cloth rag or even a little bit of cornstarch. Let the cornstarch soak up the moisture and then dust it off.

Do: Consult the Professionals

It’s pasta night, and a bowl of Bolognese accidentally spilled on your suede shoes – uh oh! The weather looked great in the morning, but by the time the afternoon rolled around, you found yourself you’re your new suede jacket) being splashed with muddy water as you waited to cross the street – uh oh!

For wet stains like these, it’s best to let the professionals clean your suede garments and shoes.

Don’t: Clean Just One Shoe

Is one shoe looking a little duller than the other? Did you spill wine on just one shoe? Is there just one dirty spot on the left sleeve of your favorite suede shirt?

Avoid cleaning only shoe or only one part of your garment, as this may cause color discrepancies. Always clean the entire garment or both shoes at the same time.

Don’t: Use Water

It’s tempting to dip a rag into the water and try to spot clean, especially if it’s just small stain. However, water can ruin suede, damage the look of your shirt or shoes, and cause other unsightly issues like wrinkles and texture changes.

Don’t: Use Your Washing Machine

Although the “gentle” cycle may tempt you, avoid using the washing machine to wash your suede shirts, skirts, or other garments. Remember, water is not suede’s friend! For the best looking suede, dry clean your suede garments.

Got a Tough Stain?

If you’ve got a tough stain, especially wet stains, your best bet to take your suede garments to a professional cleaner to preserve and protect the delicate fabric. Do you have questions about suede? You rely on the expertise of Embassy Cleaners! Contact us today.

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