Taking good care of your shoes
Well cared for, leather retains its suppleness, elasticity and beautiful shine for a long time. Any man wearing impeccable shoes gives an advantageous image of himself. On the other hand, the leather of shoes that are neglected dries out, then becomes brittle at the level of the folds. The life of the shoe becomes short.
The "ideal" cleaning kit should contain a scrub brush. The bristles of these relatively hard brushes easily remove dried mud and other stains.
Shoe polish brushes are more flexible and are used to apply shoe polish. It is advisable to use one brush for each color of shoe polish. Failing this, the use of a cloth will also be appropriate.
Polishes or creams must be enriched with beeswax and be made with as many natural elements as possible. You should use a polish that matches the color of your shoe. If you want them to take on a patina quickly, it is better to choose a polish slightly darker than the color of the leather.
You will regularly spread a thin layer of cream on the leather, then you will let it penetrate for a few minutes.
Your box will also contain a polishing brush or a cloth to polish, polish the shoe impregnated with shoe polish.
The slightest stain must be removed with a brush, because the function of shoe polish is not to clean but to nourish the leather by providing it with the substances (grease, wax and humidity) that it loses with use.
The shoe polish must be spread in a slow, circular motion, precisely measuring out the quantity that the leather needs. Abuse of shoe polish is useless, because the excess does not enter the skin and the leather is then difficult to polish.
If the leather is dry, it is necessary to let the first coat of shoe polish penetrate for ten minutes before applying the second.
Because of their perforations, flower-tipped models require intensive and often tedious care. Shoe polish that gets into the holes should be brushed off until no trace remains.
The sole and heel must also be waxed, the whole will then be rubbed with a silk cloth (or clean cotton) by performing transverse movements.
Glazing is the ultimate art of shoe polishing. Reserved for true shoe enthusiasts, not everyone necessarily appreciates this specificity.
It all starts with a good brush stroke to dust off the shoe. Professionals will then use (optional) turpentine (which does not attack leather) to dissolve the polish applied.
A colorless nourishing milk is applied, the shoe must then be left to rest for a few moments. Then begins the waxing phase to be applied roughly with a cloth stretched over your middle and index fingers. Thanks to a brush stroke, all the excess polish is removed.
The icing operation can then begin: a soft cotton cloth, shoe polish and a little warm water for the purists.
We advise you to start with a few drops of water before the first layer of paste, then mix the two components, accentuating the work on the tip and the back.
The mixture of water and shoe polish is done in small quantities.
The circular movement creating heat on the leather, the mixture of shoe polish and water will crystallize the wax particles.
There is no point in rubbing hard, because icing is a tactile art. On touch, the glazer knows at what level of the operation he is. If the cloth leaves a greasy feeling on the leather, it means that there is a little lack of water. On the contrary, if the leather becomes dull, it means that you have to add shoe polish.
An icing takes between 20 and 25 minutes, mastery and know-how only coming with practice.
In the end, you get a mirror leather, sparkling on the tip and the buttresses of the shoe.
Of course, the glaze fades as the shoe is worn. It is advisable to wipe with a soft cloth each time you use it and repeat the icing operation every 3 to 4 days of wearing the shoe.