How to Clean the Suede Soles of Dance Shoes

Written by dario saandvik
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A good dance shoe can make all the difference to the quality of a performance. Supple enough to allow for foot bending and extension, they also usually have suede soles to allow for quick spins and rotations in styles such as ballet, jazz, and ballroom. It's very important to keep the soles in good condition--clean and not too smooth and worn. There are a few simple steps you can take to clean your suede-soled dance shoes to keep them performance fit.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Suede eraser
  • Suede brush, stiff nylon brush, or toothbrush
  • Fine grit sandpaper

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  1. 1

    Quickly brush the soles of the your shoes from toe to heel, using just a couple of quick strokes to get off any dust.

  2. 2

    Rub any marks, spots or scuffs on the soles of the dance shoes with a suede eraser. Rub the marks quickly back and forth with the eraser as if you were erasing a pencil mark, and the dirt will lift off onto the eraser.

  3. 3

    Brush the bottoms of your shoes with the suede brush in one direction--from toe to heel--to move the nap (the soft surface of the suede) back into alignment.

Tips and warnings

  • Sometimes the suede sole of a dance shoe will be worn and very smooth. In order to return it to its old condition, just buff it with a fine sandpaper to give it that characteristic fuzzy suede texture again.

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