Recent seasons in fashion have been in the time of the pandemic. Lack of formal social events and working from home have led to classic styles being replaced by jeans and chinos combined with sneakers or more casual variants of men’s chelsea shoes, loafers and chukka boots.
Fortunately, noble oxfords, aviators, derby and monk shoes made of smooth grain leather are slowly coming back into favour and onto the streets. Each of these shoes, in order to be a strong point of styling, requires appropriate care, i.e. cleaning, maintenance and waterproofing. For traditionalists, one product is sufficient for almost everything – the most classic shoe polish of all – SHOE WAX. It is worth knowing how to use it in order to make it effective, and to supply yourself with proper accessories to make sure it can fulfil its task.
Shoe polishing begins with cleaning
Shoes should be properly prepared for care treatment. First, remove coarse dirt with a brush and wipe them clean with a slightly wet cotton cloth, preferably with a mild leather cleaner. Make sure that there are no layers of resins or artificial waxes on the surface of the leather which may peel and crack. If you suspect so – use a stronger cleaner (e.g. Leather Cleaner). Then leave to dry, making sure not to speed up the process with a hairdryer or heater.
Shoe polish colour selection
The choice of shoe polish colour requires attention. Black should be chosen for black shoes and brown for brown ones. If you cannot find the perfect colour, the rule of thumb is to choose shoe polish a tone darker than the shoe leather. In no case should we use colourless polish for dark leather. Waxes contained in the polish will dry and form a kind of a light, milky film, which does not look aesthetic.
To apply shoe polish it is best to use a dedicated brush with a comfortable handle and not too long bristles. It will allow you to apply just the right amount of polish, spread it evenly and reach even the most difficult spots at the seams. Remember that you should use one brush for brown shoes and another one for black ones.
Shoe polishing brush
The more natural the bristles, the more fitted to your hand the profile of the brush, the faster movements you can make while polishing. This is important because it is when rubbing the brush against the leather surface that a temperature is generated which melts the micro wax particles in the polish and allows them to melt into micro pores of leather, forming a thin protective layer.
The final stage is polishing finish, which can be carried out with a special glove. By feeling the polished surface directly under our palm, we are able to work precisely, smooth and finally even out the layer of polish applied. Thanks to the glove our hands and shirt cuffs will not get dirty and we will improve the effect of an elegant shine just before leaving home.
The frequency of polishing grain leather shoes depends on how often they are used. Optimally, this operation should be carried out every 2-3 weeks. Finally, we must not forget about the absolutely necessary shoe trees, which we fill our shoes with after each wear, so that your shoes maintain their elegant shape.