Updated: Oct 18
Quality dress shoes can last for a long time. So, if you make the decision to buy a nice pair of dress shoes and you follow through with the purchase, be sure to take the extra time and give them ongoing proper care. When you make your purchase, buy a set of cedar shoe trees then as well.
Cedar shoe trees are a dress shoe device that fit into dress shoes. When you remove your dress shoes at the end of the day, fit the device into each shoe. It will return your shoes to their original shape and pull in both odor and moisture retained by the shoe leather If possible, leave the shoe tree in your shoe for a full day after you have worn your shoes. For this to work you will need to own two or more pairs of dress shoes so you can leave the shoe tree in your shoe for at least 24 hours.
A Cedar shoe tree will also impart a subtle nice cedar smell after each use. When the cedar aroma left behind in the shoe starts to become less and less, sand it lightly and the nice smell it leaves in your shoe after each use will be back in business.
If your budget can only swing buying one pair when beginning, at a minimum, put in the shoe trees for the night. It will assist the shoes in handling constant use for now until you have the money to buy additional pairs. Use a shoehorn when putting on your shoes to stop the leather at the heel of the shoe getting a crease.
Top-quality shoes must be polished. Dress shoes that are not polished look shabby and not cared for will eventually become ragged looking and start cracking.
Cleaning and polishing a pair of dress shoes take about fifteen minutes. Your shoes should be fully cleaned and polished after you have worn them 6 times. During the evening when you put your shoe trees into your shoes take one minute to sweep the dayʼs dirt from the cracks and wipe down the shoes with a clean rag.
Polish your shoes with the shoe trees in place. Clean the shoe leather with a high-quality shoe soap like Kiwi Saddle Soap or a leather shoe cleaner like it.
Cleaning the shoes first will keep layers of polish from building up into muck and it will preserve the shoeʼs leather.
Once your shoes are clean, use your ʻdirtyʼ shoe rag to work shoe polish into the leather. Leave it for five minutes and then remove the excess shoe polish using the same rag. Finish the shoe by buffing it out with some vim and vigor with a clean rag. Be sure that the right and left shoe final look of the clean and polished shine is at the same high-level.