Cleaning Guide for Suede, Leather, and Kilim Loafers

How to Clean and Care for Suede, Leather, and Kilim Loafers

Should I wear wear formal shoes if it’s going to rain? What happens if my suede loafers get wet? Is leather waterproof? Where do I buy suede loafer cleaner? How do I care for my kilim loafers? What’s your expert advice on how to care for formal shoes? All of these questions get asked a lot at Res Ipsa, so we put together a helpful guide with our recommendations to properly clean and care for your suede, leather, and kilim loafers.

Suede loafers:

The most important thing to remember about your suede loafers is not to get them wet. We do not recommend you wear suede outside in the rain. Instead, bring an older pair of shoes to wear out in the rain and then change into your suede shoes inside. Here’s what we recommend for how to clean suede shoes:

Men's Suede Loafers

Day of the Dead Loafers 

- Protect from water and stains using a suede defense spray.

- Do not use a cleaning solvent when removing dirt, stains, or water. Use a suede shoe cleaner or suede brush. 

- Use a suede brush in a circular motion against the nap of the suede to restore its softness and texture.

- If suede is wet, wait until it is dry before brushing. Do not use heat to dry.

- Take loafers to a specialty store if damage is severe.

Leather loafers:

With leather loafers, it’s important to upkeep them regularly throughout the year. Unlike suede, leather can afford some water damage. It’s always best to keep your leather protected when possible. Here’s what we recommend for how to clean leather shoes:

 

Men's Ostrich Leather Loafers

Ostrich Leather Loafers 

- Spray a leather protector over the material before exposed to rain or sun.

- Do not use a cleaning solvent when removing dirt, stains, or water.

- If leather area is wet or stained, simply dry it with a soft cloth or towel. Do not use heat to dry. Apply leather conditioner once dry.

- Take loafers to a specialty store if damage is severe.

Kilim loafers:

We use Turkish kilim, which is by far the most used and highly regarded method of weaving kilim. We designed our kilim loafers with a waterproof backing. While we don’t recommend it, we’ve been stuck in the pouring rain wearing them and they survived. Whether it’s stepping into a puddle or weathering a storm, they’ll get wet, but they’ll survive. Here’s what we recommend for how to clean kilim shoes:

Men's Kilim Loafers

Kilim Loafers

- Do not use a cleaning solvent.

- If kilim is wet, dry it with a soft cloth or towel. You can also let it air dry.

- Use a suede brush in a circular motion against it to remove dirt.

- Contact us info@resipsausa.com if damage is severe.

Additional resources we recommend for loafer upkeep:

- SWIMS Galoshes: a product we use when it's wet and nasty outside. You can put the galosh around a leather or kilim loafer to protect against rain, snow, slush and general wear and tear.

- Saphir’s Suede Brushes: these are the Aston Martin of suede brushes. Purchase the whole collection for your suede care and cleaning.

- Trio in Atlanta, GA: Shannon at Trio will give you great advice on how to care for kilim and suede. Tell her we love her!