If you live in a cold climate, you are no stranger to the effect that snow and salt have on your footwear. What often might be thought of as snow stains on your boots are actually stains left by salt. Salt stains are white, powdery marks that appear on the toes and soles of your shoes, and won't seem to brush off as easily as you might think. Learn to remove salt stains from your winter boots, and you will find they last much longer and look better over time.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- 1 cup water
- 1 tbsp vinegar
- Crumbled paper
- Clean rag, cotton ball or suede brush
Fill a small bowl or cup with one cup of lukewarm water. Add one tbsp of vinegar and use a spoon to stir the solution. Crumple several pieces of scrap paper or newspaper and fill the foot and shaft of the boot. This will help the boot to retain its shape when it gets wet.
Dip a cotton ball or rag in the water and vinegar solution, then wring it out so that it is damp. Do a spot test on an inconspicuous area of the shoe in case the leather reacts badly to the vinegar. Allow the area to dry to make sure it doesn't worsen the stain.
Dab the stain with the damp rag or cotton ball, covering it completely. Dip the rag or cotton ball again, and dab at the stain again, repeating the process several times.
Allow the boot to dry completely to see if the stain is gone. If not, repeat the process again with a clean water and vinegar solution. You may have to repeat the process a few times on a suede or soft leather boot, but with a shiny leather boot, you should be able to remove the salt stains on the first try.
Tips and warnings
- You can also try using Windex Multi Surface cleaner with Vinegar for persistant stains. Be sure to do a spot test with this before applying it to an obvious part of the boot.
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