How to Clean Damaged Leather Shoes

Updated November 21, 2016

Leather shoes cannot be cleaned the same way regular shoes are cleaned. Leather must be treated with care, because certain types of cleaning products can leave streaks on leather shoes or further damage them. Leather also must be conditioned to retain its moisture and sheen. Natural products such as vinegar and olive oil are able to clean leather without staining or drying it out. A soft cloth also should be used to keep the shoes from getting further scuffed up.

Remove the laces if your shoes have them.

Rub a soft shoe brush all over your shoes.

Pour 1 cup of water into a bowl.

Add 1 cup of white vinegar, and mix well.

Dip a soft cloth into the bowl and squeeze out the excess liquid.

Go over the entire outer surface of the shoes with the cloth. Redip the rag and squeeze out the excess liquid often.

Take another cloth and dip it into clean water. Use it to remove all of the vinegar from the shoes.

Dry the shoes with a soft cloth.

Dip another cloth into a bowl of olive oil, and rub it onto the damaged spots of the leather shoes.

Things You'll Need

  • Soft shoe brush
  • Bowl
  • White vinegar
  • Soft cloths
  • Olive oil
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About the Author

Megan Richardson began her career as a freelance writer and editor in 2009. She has experience in public relations and event planning, and she worked as a writer's assistant to a published author for more than a year. Her work has also appeared in "The Daily Sentinel." Richardson holds a Bachelor of Arts in communication and journalism from Stephen F. Austin State University