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Danform Shoes Care and Cleaning Guide

Danform Shoes Care and Cleaning Guide

One of Danform Shoes' guiding principles is to help you buy shoes you love, shoes that fit well, and shoes that will last.  Some of our customers buy LOTS of shoes, others might buy one pair each year.  We know that shoes are an investment; we sell quality shoes that are good for your feet and will stand the test of time.  When it comes to footwear, you get what you pay for.

Protecting your investments is a great way to extend the life of your footwear and accessories. We offer a variety of products which can clean, condition and waterproof.  Our FIT EXPERTS will always recommend the best products to keep your shoes sparkling even against Vermont's salty winters.  

Birkenstock Deluxe Cleaning Kit conditions cork and buffs your Birks!


    • Always have your footwear clean and dry before applying any products.
    • Having shoes and accessories at room temp, or a bit warm will help the hydrating products absorb easier.
    • Alternating shoes can help with their longevity. It gives the leathers and materials time to breathe and relax.
    • Match your cleaning product to your shoes' material.  How do I know what type of leather shoes I have? The best way is to come in and talk to our staff so we can show you the best products, but if your leather finish is:
        • Smooth and Shiny, like a dress shoe: it’s likely smooth leather 
        • Soft with a pile: it’s likely suede or nubuck 
        • Matte finish, and shows marks: it’s likely an oiled leather 

Tips for Birkenstocks

Birkenstock's exposed cork base requires extra attention to keep it from drying out.  Extend your Birk's happy life by applying a thin coat of Cork Sealer/Cork Life to protect them from the Vermonty elements that can take a toll.  

Avoid extreme heat with Birkenstocks, as well as EVA sandals, which can crack or shrink if exposed to direct sun or the intense heat of a closed car.

     The Best Shoe Cleaning Products for Vermont Weather

    leather cleaning lotion sofsole

    Leather Lotion: Leather lotion is a handy product. It helps clean and condition all of your leather and synthetic shoes, bags, wallets, and more. Not recommended for suede or nubuck. 

    👉  Application: After major soils are removed, grab a soft rag (some of us use our hands) and apply a small amount to your shoe or accessory, and rub in with small circular motion. You may notice your rag gets a bit dirty - congratulations, you have a cleaner shoe! The leather will look darker temporarily, as it is hydrated and conditioned. After gently buff with a soft cloth or brush.

    Mink Oil: Mink oil is a Wonderful product because it hydrates and waterproofs at the same time! Get your old cowboy boots out, or any smooth or grain leather, and give them some love! Because it has a rich and greasy feel, it can darken the leather's finish.  It isn’t recommended for use on suede, oiled or rough cut leathers.

    👉  Application: After major soils are removed, apply a small amount with a cloth to your leather. Rub in with a circular motion. Like skin, your leather will absorb and take in as much as is needed, so any extra can be wiped off - it will likely darken the leather too. The saturated look will go away as time goes on, but if you aren’t looking for the “heavy” conditioned look, try Leather Lotion.

    Oiled Leather Sponge:  Oiled sponges are a convenient and fast way to hydrate your oiled leather shoes (not for suede or nubuck). The sponge is saturated with an oil which hydrates and helps smooth out minor scuffs - like the toe of an oiled leather Dansko clog, for example. 

    👉  Application: Swipe the sponge side to side over the surface of your shoes or boots. The oil will penetrate and help hydrate the leather, creating a slightly darker color. If you want a deep hydration, you can try something like Mink Oil, or even a boot oil. The sponge is best for a “quick fix” when you want to brush up your shoes.

    Instant Shine Sponge: A crowd favorite, the instashine spongeis your best friend before your interview, wedding, or any other place you want a quick shine to spruce up your smooth leather, synthetic leather or vinyl footwear. 

    👉  Application: Swipe the sponge side to side, and the clear liquid will help smooth out surface imperfections, giving a shiny finish. 

    Waterproofing Spray: A must-have for the fall and winter (or anytime of the year in VT!), our non-silicone waterproofing spray is an effective product that can be used on leather and any fabric, except materials like vinyl and patent leather. It’s great for your shoes, boots, backpacks, purses, or hats! It helps repel stains too and won’t alter the finish!

    👉  Application: In a well ventilated area, we prefer outside or in the garage if that’s the best option, spray a light coat about 6 inches away. After 5 minutes, apply a second coat. Be sure to focus on the seams!  Let the product dry for a couple hours before wearing. We recommend stuffing shoes with a rag or newspaper so the product doesn’t get inside. If you clean your shoes a lot or they encounter the elements a ton, we recommend reapplying periodically. 

    Sofsole Suede and Nubuck Kit

    The Suede & Nubuck Kit is designed to clean greasy spots and stains from your suede and nubuck shoes, bags, coats and more. It's recommended to test for colorfastness in an inconspicuous area, before all-over application.

    👉  Application: Use the bar (grey is for nubuck, white is for suede) and rub aggressively on the spot or stain, then follow up with the brush to fluff up the nap. 

    Every Vermonter Must Know How to Remove Salt Stains From Shoes!

    👉  Cleaning salt stains: we recommend using equal parts warm water and white vinegar and a rag or brush to clean off the salt. After shoes or boots have dried, continue with your conditioning or waterproofing treatments.   Simple, but effective.  

    Visit Our Stores Because Danform Shoes Loves to Help!

    Danform Shoes knows that buying shoe care products can be confusing.  Please don't hesitate to call one of our stores, or stop in to talk to one of our experts. Remember, shoes are our business and we love to bring you the Danform Difference: with knowledge, attention, and care. We hope to see you soon! 

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