How to Clean Suede & Nubuck Shoes: What Tools are Must-Have!

Suede and nubuck are two popular materials for shoes. Suede is a classic and luxurious fabric that is often used in high-end fashion. Nubuck is similar to suede, but has a smoother surface and is more durable. Because they are made from natural fibers, it is important to clean nubuck and suede shoes properly. Take care of them regularly to keep them looking like new.

Spot Cleaning Suede & Nubuck Shoes: Use a Damp Cloth for Fresh Stains

Many people are wondering: can you clean nubuck and suede shoes by soap and water without any special detergents. So, yes. Spot cleaning is the best way to avoid permanent stains on nubuck and suede. Do it straight away after a stain occurs. To clean suede shoes, or nubuck, use a damp cloth and blot the stain gently. Do not rub the stain, as this will only spread it and make it more difficult to remove. If the stain is stubborn, you may need to use a mild soap. Be sure to test any cleaners on an inconspicuous area of the leather first to ensure they will not damage the fabric. Once the stain is gone, allow the shoes to air dry completely before using them again.

Suede Brush: Clean Nubuck & Suede From Light Dirt And Dust

Suede brush is must-have tool to add to your cleaning supplies. Whether you own a lot of leather apparel or shoes, these tools are the perfect way to keep them looking their best. The soft material is ideal for getting into hard-to-reach places and is gentle enough so it won’t damage delicate surfaces.

The special brush can easily remove dirt, dust, and other particles that may be stuck in the fabric without having to use harsh chemicals or abrasive tools. You can also fluff up napped fabrics to give them back their original look and texture. Plus, since they’re so small and lightweight, they can fit comfortably in any closet or drawer for easy storage when not in use!

dirty suede nubuck

To clean nubuck or suede shoes with a special brush, gently rub it over the surface of the leather. It will remove any dirt or dust on the suede and nubuck without damaging the delicate surface. Once you have finished cleaning the leather, let it dry, and fluff the leather using a special brush.

Eraser: Clean Suede & Nubuck Shoes From Old Stains

A suede eraser is a small piece of rubber that looks like a rectangular block or a miniature hockey puck. It has a rough surface that helps to remove dirt and stains from suede and nubuck without damaging the material. To clean nubuck shoes or suede with an eraser, rub the eraser over the stained area in a circular motion. The eraser will lift away the dirt and stain, like from paper, leaving leather shoes clean. But do not overpressure, especially with suede. you might damage the material.

Vacuum: Use a Soft Brush Attachment to Vacuum

When you found your suede or nubuck too dusty or dirty, you can use a soft bristle brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner. First, if the shoes are also wet, blot the surface with a clean dry cloth or sponge. Absorb as much liquid as possible. Next, use the soft brush attachment, and vacuum the area in a circular motion. Go over the area several times to remove all the dirt and debris. Finally, use a suede cleaner or mild soap for general cleaning. Apply conditioning and coating to protect the material and keep it looking new.

Foaming Cleaner: Make Your Shoes Look Like New

To use the foaming cleaner, you will need a suede brush and a soft cloth. First, wet the brush with water and then add a small amount of the cleaner to the sponge, or lightly but generously spray it on your shoes if it’s in form of a spray. Next, gently brush the entire surface of the shoe with the foaming cleaner. Be sure to go over any especially dirty areas. Finally, wipe off any excess cleaner with a soft cloth.

Tools for cleaning suede and nubuck shoes

Your leather shoes will look like new. It is important to follow the directions carefully so that you do not damage your shoes. With proper care, your suede or nubuck shoes will last for many years.

Waterproofing: Protect Suede and Nubuck From Water Damage

When it comes to suede, one of the best ways to protect this delicate material is to use a suede protector spray. This type of spray creates an artificial protective layer that will help to repel water and stains, making it easier to keep your suede looking new.

Suede protector spray is easy to use and can be found at most stores that sell shoe care products. Simply spray the area you wish to protect and let it dry. Be sure to follow the instructions on the bottle carefully so that you do not damage your suede.

By using a suede protector spray, you can help to extend the life of your favorite pair of shoes.

Deodorizing: Use Mild Detergent

Suede is susceptible to absorbing odors, so it’s important to take care of them properly. The best way to deodorize suede is to prevent the fabric from coming into contact with strong smells in the first place. But if you are reading this paragraph, it’s already happened. If your suede or nubuck absorbed an odor, air it out in a well-ventilated area. Additionally, use a mild detergent on the affected area, and dry your shoes completely, or it will be another stale smell.

If you’re looking for a folk remedy, a more natural way to clean your nubuck shoes from smells – is baking soda. Simply sprinkle baking soda on the affected area and let it sit for 30 minutes before vacuuming it up. You may need to repeat this process several times to completely remove the odor. However, just be aware that some people are suing companies that sell baking soda, claiming that it ruined their suede garments. Sound weird, but true.

Other Stains: Grass and Gum

To clean suede shoes and nubuck from grass stains simply rub it with cornstarch and let it sit for a while. Clean the remains away with a soft bristle brush attachment on your hand vacuum cleaner.

If you are dealing with gum, you can freeze your shoes and gently scrape it off. Do not pressure too hard, it can damage the material.

Storing: Acid-free Tissue and a Cool Dry Place

You should store suede and nubuck shoes away from direct sunlight or heat, in a cool, dry place. Poor storage conditions can cause the leather to fade or crack, or even cause wrinkles and mold. And it definitely doesn’t work the same way as with expensive cheese, where mold only adds to the price. If you are storing suede or nubuck for long periods, consider wrapping it in acid-free tissue paper to help protect it from dust and moisture. Also, it will help shoes to keep their form, when stuffed with paper inside.

Suede and nubuck should not be stored in plastic bags, as this can cause the material to mildew.

Related Video: How To Clean Suede Boots


Overall, the best way to clean nubuck shoes or suede is to use a special brush and eraser for removing dirt and debris. If your leather shoes are particularly dirty, you can use a special foaming cleaner, or just mild soap to clean the dirty spot without general cleaning. It’s important to avoid getting the suede wet, as this can cause permanent water damage. When storing your suede or nubuck shoes, be sure to keep them far from direct sunlight, in a dark, relatively cool, and dry place. With proper care, your suede or nubuck shoes will stay looking great for years to come!


Is nubuck ruined by water?

Despite its durability, Nubuck can be ruined by long exposure to water. When the nubuck gets wet, the water causes the fibers in the leather to swell and expand. This makes nubuck wrinkled and less flexible. In addition, the water can also cause the color of the nubuck to change. If exposure to moisture will take longer, it can even cause leather rot and mold. 

It can be really difficult to restore it to its original condition. If it does get wet, blot the area with a dry cloth as soon as possible, and let it dry in a well-ventilated room. And do not forget about waterproofing: it will save you time and money in the future.

Can you clean Suede shoes with dish soap and water?

Yes, you can clean suede with dish soap and water. It’s the easiest and most affordable way to clean it. Fill a bowl or sink with lukewarm water and add a small amount of dish soap. Submerge the sponge or cloth in the mixture, squeeze, and gently rub the soiled area of the suede. Rinse the area with clear water, or wipe it with a dump cloth and allow it to air dry. Just remember, that excessive moisture can damage the material. So make sure they dry completely before storing.

Does vinegar ruin suede?

Vinegar is sometimes used as a folk remedy for shoes leather care. But can it damage such delicate material, as suede? The answer is unfortunately yes. Vinegar is an acidic substance that can break down the fibers in suede, causing the material to weaken and eventually fall apart. So if you accidentally spill vinegar on your shoes, just clean it up immediately. And if you want to use it for shoes care, just remember how vinegar affects the leather.

How do you keep nubuck waterproof?

You can do it by applying a protective spray specifically designed for nubuck leather. These sprays create an invisible layer of protection against the elements that helps repel water, dirt, and stains.