Chances are your favourite old shoes have seen better days. This doesn't mean you have to get rid of them. Rather, you can preserve them with a sole-saving product known as Shoe Goo. Shoe Goo has been around since 1972. It was originally developed to fight "tennis toe"---a term used to describe the tearing of the front of the tennis shoe that is caused during a tennis game. Now it is used to repair soles, holes in shoes, or for making shoes water-resistant. Affordable and long-lasting, Shoe Goo is easy to apply and available at many stores.
Cleaning and Preparing the Area
Make sure the area you plan on applying your Shoe Goo to is completely free of dirt. Depending on how worn the shoe is, you may be able to simply rub the area with a warm, damp cloth. If the wear is more extensive, you may need to wash the shoes in a washing machine or with a more abrasive sponge. Allow the area to completely dry before applying any Shoe Goo. For best results, consider adding minor scratches to the area before you apply the Shoe Goo. This is best done when the shoe is completely dry. This can be done with very gentle sandpaper, a dry sponge, or steel wool. The Shoe Goo will restore the lustre lost during this stage of preparing your shoe for Shoe Goo application.
Applying the Glue
Read the directions included with the product for any variations before applying any glue. To open the tube, puncture the seal with the pointed-side of the cap of the tube. Apply the Shoe Goo to the damaged area by squeezing out product directly onto the surface. Use the opening of the tube to spread the Shoe Goo, or use a cotton swab to further spread the Goo. Allow it to "cure" for 5 to 10 minutes before pushing the edges of any holes in your shoe together. The Goo should bond the sides together instantly. Apply pressure to squeeze the sides together. If possible, consider adding weight with a book or any other heavy object. Allow the glue to fully dry for at least 24 hours before wearing.
Ensuring the Success of Shoe Repair
Before fully repairing your shoe damage, try a test location on the shoe. Different materials may take different lengths of time to properly dry. Testing a small area before completely repairing your damage will allow you to see how much time your shoe repair will require to dry. Also, temperature can play a factor in the success of your Shoe Goo repair. Your Goo will require less time to cure if the temperature is cooler; conversely, it will need more time to cure at a warmer, more humid temperature. Excess adhesive can be removed with paint thinner or acetone-based nail polish remover, though you may need to use sparingly as it has the potential to damage the shoe itself. To preserve your tube of Shoe Goo for future use, clean the tube threads and seal tightly. Store at room temperature.