OK, you’ve got your new white kicks, but how do you keep them looking white and bright all year round?
IF you’ve read my last post you’re probably wondering about the upkeep or maintenance required with owning a pair of white shoes.
I’ve heard of a few women who have a wardrobe of white sneakers. One pair gets dirty, marked or stained and they just throw them out! Talk about extravagant. But I — and I’m guessing many of you — would never consider purchasing several pairs of white sneakers every year. Nor would I ever toss them out just because they’ve got a small mark.
Instead I’ve adopted a fairly strict cleaning routine. Here are my tips on how to keep your white sneakers — and shoes — white.
HOW TO KEEP YOUR WHITE SHOES WHITE
1. Before wearing your new shoes, pre-treat with a waterproofer or stain repellent, such as a Scotchguard, for canvas or something similar for leather. Reapply every few weeks. Remember to use the correct product on the right material because the wrong product can damage the shoe instead of protecting it. Generally speaking, creams, oils, beeswax (products applied with a clean, dry, soft white cloth) such as Kiwi Zanolin are great for conditioning and waterproofing soft leather. Or a spray waterproofer works well on fabric and canvas shoes.
2. NEVER EVER wash your canvas sneakers in the washing machine. Some brands suggest you can, but just DON’T.
3. However, if you get some unsightly marks and scuffs on your white shoes, use a clean cloth dipped in white vinegar to spot clean some stains.
4. For more stubborn stains, such as oil or grease, spot clean stains with a clean damp cloth dipped in a solution of warm water and gentle baby shampoo.
5. You can use bleach — diluted, of course (one part bleach with five parts water). Rinse with warm water when you’re done. Full strength (undiluted) bleach will actually leave a yellow mark where you sponged.
6. Use an old toothbrush dipped in your cleaning solution of choice — warm water and shampoo or white vinegar — to get to those hard-to-reach areas.
7. After cleaning, stuff shoes with paper towels or an old dry cloth to help absorb any excess moisture and speed up the drying process.
8. Leave to dry outdoors, but out of direct sunlight.
9. Clean white laces by placing in a lingerie wash bag or a pillowcase and wash in a hot (whites) cycle in the washing machine.
10. Use white nail polish — truly! — to cover up scuffs and scratches on leather and rubber soles of your sneakers. Or try a sports shoes whitener such as Kiwi Sports Whitener.
BONUS: If you wear your sneakers without socks or those little cotton sockettes, sprinkle baking soda inside your sneakers at night to absorb any unpleasant odours.
PLUS, HOW TO KEEP YOUR WHITE CLOTHES WHITE
DOUBLE BONUS: For those who want to keep their white shirts and Tees white, I swear by good old Bluo, the liquid blue optical laundry brightener. I’ve been using it for years and it’s never let me down.
Do you love your white sneakers? How do you keep them clean? Like to share your tips and hints? Would love to hear from you. Ever stylishly yours …