posted by: shoesense in General on April 7th, 2008
We’ve covered the topic several times before (remember, the cobbler is thy friend?) but it just struck me, talking to some friends the other night, how many women are clueless about taking care of their shoes.
Mind you, I said “women,” not “men,” mainly because men have traditionally been taught to get sturdier, more durable shoes that require regular maintenance (the image of the gentleman reading a newspaper while getting his shoes shined on the way to work is kind of iconic in our culture; try to imagine a woman in the same position! right? right!). My husband abides by these few simple rules for his not-at-all-negligible shoe collection:
- buy shoe of superior quality, for they will last a lifetime (with proper care)
- always put taps on the tip and heel of the shoe sole before you wear them for the first time; replace these taps as they wear out on a regular basis;
- rotate the shoes–never wear the same pair two days in a row, and if possible, run a “full cycle” of seasonally appropriate shoes before going back to wear a pair (in his case, that’s wearing each pair once approximately two weeks);
- always store your shoes with cedar shoe-trees in them, to keep the leather nicely stretched and prevent unsightly creases; also, the shoe trees absorb humidity and odors (that’s perspiration, in one word); you can buy them at your local CVS or Rite-Aid or online at stores like Zappos);
- never leave your shoes close to a vent or a source of heat/dry air–heat and dry air are the enemy of leather;
- store your shoes in a closed space, to avoid dust and protect them from miscellaneous “accidents” (um….dogs in your shoes, anyone?); consider storing them in boxes or shoe bags;
- always have a shoe horn handy to avoid destroying the back of the shoe (just to give you an idea about how important this is, my husband’s shoe horn is custom-made–extra-long, wrapped in two-toned leather);
- repair your shoes as needed (for shoes you are really fond of, this may mean resoling them–yes, it’s an option);
- clean and polish your shoes regularly with a good shoe polish.
I was reminded of this when I came across this article-”Love those shoes and make’m last,” full of such sensible advice. The article also reminded me of a problem men don’t usually have to deal with: inserts for closed-toe shoes that are worn sockless–which many women are fond of doing, usually with (there’s no delicate way to say this) stinky results. There are a few options on the market for that particular problem, and as it happens we at Shoeblog are in the process of testing one such product, so stay tuned for updates on that!
In the meantime, however, don’t forget to take good care of your shoes–they take care of your feet, so return the love!
Image courtesy of http://www.lmkdesign.com/.