Clean Your Suede Sneakers Easily

Keeping suede items clean doesn’t have to be a daunting task. With the right tools and methods, you can easily maintain the look and feel of your suede belongings, ensuring they stay in top condition for years to come. Starting with gathering the necessary supplies, moving on to surface dirt removal, and finally tackling those tougher stains, this guide will walk you through each step of the process. Whether you’re a first-timer or just looking to brush up on your suede cleaning techniques, this instructional guide has got you covered.

Gathering Cleaning Supplies


  • Suede brush (1 pcs)
  • Eraser or suede cleaner (1 pcs)
  • White vinegar
  • Soft cloth
  • Bowl
  • Lukewarm water
  • Paper towels or white tissue

Step 1: Prep Your Sneakers

Before starting, remove the shoelaces to avoid getting them wet or dirty. Brush off any loose dirt using the suede brush. Always brush in the direction of the suede’s grain to avoid damaging the material.

Step 2: Spot Clean with Eraser

Use a suede eraser or a gentle cleaner specifically designed for suede. Gently rub the eraser over any scuffs or stains. The idea is to lift the dirt without pushing it further into the suede. For stubborn stains, apply a little pressure, but be careful not to damage the material.

Step 3: Tackle Tough Stains with Vinegar

Mix a solution of one part white vinegar and two parts water in a bowl. Dip the soft cloth into the mixture, wring it out so it’s damp, not soaking. Gently dap this cloth on the tough stains. Do not rub vigorously as this can damage the suede. Vinegar is effective for removing stubborn stains but use it sparingly.

Step 4: Dry Your Sneakers

Once you’ve cleaned your sneakers, stuff them with paper towels or white tissue to absorb moisture and help maintain their shape while drying. Leave them to air dry away from direct heat or sunlight, which can fade the color of your suede.

Step 5: Brush Again

When your sneakers are completely dry, use the suede brush again. This final brushing helps to fluff up the material, restoring its natural texture and appearance. Brush gently but thoroughly to ensure your sneakers look their best.

Step 6: Protection (optional)

For added protection, consider using a suede protector spray after cleaning. Follow the instructions on the spray can for the best results. This step helps to repel water and prevent stains, keeping your suede sneakers looking good for longer.

By following these steps, you can effectively clean your suede sneakers and keep them looking as good as new. Remember to be gentle with the material throughout the cleaning process to avoid any damage.

Image of suede sneakers being cleaned

Pre-cleaning Preparation

Continuing from where we left off, after ensuring your suede sneakers are dry and their texture is restored, let’s discuss the additional steps to maintain their pristine condition.

Materials Needed:

  • Soft cloth
  • Suede conditioning cream
  • Gentle brush (for application)

Step 1: Conditioning Your Suede Sneakers

Over time, suede can lose its softness and might look a bit worn. This is where conditioning comes into the picture. Opt for a high-quality suede conditioning cream. With a gentle brush or soft cloth, apply a small amount of the conditioner on the surface of your sneakers. Work in a circular motion, covering all suede areas evenly. This conditioner replenishes the oils in the suede, keeping it soft and preventing it from drying out and cracking.

Step 2: Regular Maintenance

Suede’s enemy is dust and dirt, which can quickly embed itself into the material. For day-to-day maintenance, use a soft brush to gently remove any surface dirt from your sneakers. This prevents buildup over time and maintains the suede’s nap and texture. Make it a habit to do this after every wear, especially if you’ve walked through dusty or dirty areas.

Step 3: Address Spills Immediately

Accidents happen, and the key to preventing a spill from becoming a permanent stain on your suede sneakers is to act fast. Blot any spills immediately with a clean, dry cloth. Do not rub; just dab gently until the spill no longer transfers to the cloth. If the spill has dried or left a mark, refer back to spot cleaning methods mentioned previously.

Step 4: Storing Your Sneakers Properly

When not in use, store your suede sneakers in a way that prevents dust accumulation and maintains their shape. A breathable storage bag or a shoebox with holes punched in for air circulation works great. Avoid plastic bags as they trap moisture, which can lead to mold growth. Additionally, inserting shoe trees can help maintain their original shape and prevent creases.

Remember, suede sneakers exude style and sophistication but demand care and attention to keep them looking their best. By incorporating these steps into your routine, you ensure lasting beauty and wearability of your favorite suede footwear.

This comprehensive guide on caring for your suede sneakers concludes here. Embrace each step to preserve the elegance and character of your shoes. If questions or additional tips come to mind, feel free to share in the comments section below. Your engagement enriches our community’s knowledge and passion for quality footwear care.

A pair of suede sneakers being taken care of to maintain their quality

Deep Cleaning Methods

Step 5: Deep Clean with a Suede Shampoo

For a comprehensive deep cleaning, consider using a suede shampoo. Here’s how to do it:

Supplies You’ll Need:
  • Suede shampoo or a dedicated suede cleaning solution
  • A soft brush or a suede brush
  • A clean, dry cloth
  • Lukewarm water
  • A sponge or soft brush for application


  1. Prep the Sneakers: Ensure your suede sneakers are dry. If they’re not, allow them to air-dry away from direct heat before proceeding.
  2. Create the Cleaning Mixture: Read the instructions on the suede shampoo bottle. Mix the suede shampoo with lukewarm water as directed. Typically, a small amount of shampoo with a considerable amount of water works best.
  3. Test the Solution: Before applying the mixture to your sneakers, test it on a small, inconspicuous area to ensure it doesn’t change the color or texture of the suede.
  4. Apply Gently: Dip a sponge or soft brush in the cleaning mixture. Wring out excess liquid to avoid soaking the suede. Gently brush the outer surface of your sneakers with the sponge or brush. Focus on the areas that need most attention but treat the entire surface evenly to avoid watermarks.
  5. Rinse Sparingly: Once you’ve cleaned the sneakers, dampen a clean cloth with lukewarm water and lightly brush over the surface to rinse out the shampoo. Do not soak the suede.
  6. Blot the Excess Water: Use a dry cloth to blot the sneakers gently. This helps in removing any excess water. Remember, never wring out suede shoes, as it can damage their shape and texture.
  7. Air-Dry: Allow your sneakers to dry naturally. Do not place them near a heater or in direct sunlight, as it may cause the suede to shrink or fade.
  8. Brush to Finish: Once your sneakers are completely dry, use a suede brush to gently restore the nap (the soft, fuzzy surface) of the suede. Brush in one direction for a uniform appearance.

By following these detailed steps, you can effectively deep clean your suede sneakers, ensuring they look fresh and last longer. Remember, regular maintenance combined with timely deep cleaning can significantly extend the life and appearance of your suede footwear. This method, balanced with the precautions and care steps covered earlier, offers the best way to maintain your suede sneakers in top-notch condition. It’s a straightforward process that preserves the unique qualities of suede while keeping your sneakers looking their best.

A pair of clean suede sneakers, showcasing the process of deep cleaning them for maintenance

After carefully following each step, from preparation through deep cleaning, your suede items should now look refreshed and well cared for. Remember, regular maintenance is key to keeping suede looking its best. Don’t wait for dirt and stains to build up; incorporate these cleaning steps into your routine care for suede. With a little effort and the right techniques, your suede will continue to look soft and elegant, adding a touch of sophistication to your style. So, grab your cleaning supplies and give your suede the attention it deserves. Happy cleaning!

Was this article helpful?