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Who Has Time to Polish Her Shoes?

Posted by Christine Reicker on

Who has time to polish her shoes? You could always take your shoes to a shoe repair shop to have them polished, but this takes the time of driving to and from the shop, not to mention the expense. 

Long ago, when I was more diligent about my shoe care, I had a homemade shoe polish kit with creme shoe polishes in a variety of colors, a shoe brush (recommended by my Mom to remove dirt before polishing), and a couple of old T-shirts that I used as polishing cloths. This kit was housed in a shoe box, naturally.

Today, I have creme shoe polish in black and a caramel-brown color. My system is more "disposable," but it's quick and inexpensive. Polishing shoes removes scuffs and hides scrapes that make shoes look old and worn out.

What You'll Need

  • creme shoe polish (not wax); Melantonian is a great brand (available on Amazon)
  • paper towels
  • rubber, vinyl, or latex gloves (optional)

How to Polish Your Shoes Fast (...looks like a lot of steps, but they're quick)

  1.  Find a flat surface such as a table top, or you can sit on the floor.
  2. Spread a few paper towels on the surface/floor to protect it from the soles of the shoes and shoe polish; place the shoes on the paper towels.
  3. Put on the gloves. (Shoe polish washes off of skin, but not easily.)
  4. Roll out a few, continuous sheets of paper towels.
  5. Fold the paper towels so that they make a square polishing "cloth."
  6. Dip a corner of this polishing cloth into the shoe cream.
  7. Place the shoe cream on an area of the shoe and spread it around the shoe until it disappears. 
  8. Repeat steps 6 and 7 until you've covered the entire shoe, paying attention to get polish on those scuffs and scrapes.
  9. Let the shoes "sit" for at least 5 minutes. (They can sit for hours, but you must complete step 10 so that polish does not come off on your pants.)
  10. Make a clean "cloth" as in step 5, and buff the shoe until not much polish comes off on the cloth.  
  11. Keep buffing--and soon the leather will shine!

You can always use an old T-shirt instead of paper towels and keep it with the shoe polish. And, if your shoes or boots are really dirty, you can invest in one of those shoe brushes to whisk away dirt before you begin applying shoe polish.

I admit that I find shoe polishing a chore, but my shoes look so much newer when polished. And, I look more "polished." (Sorry, I could not resist.)..and so will you.


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