How to Shine Shoes

Step-By-Step Guide on How to Shine Shoes

Even if you have a pair of great shoes, they can eventually start becoming worn out or horrible if not given the proper treatment. If this is your first time to shine your shoes, there is no need to worry as shining your shoes is very simple! It does not require an expert to do this. All you need to do is to get a shoe polish, a soft cloth and also a shoe brush!



Having enough-shined shoes give additional points for your attire. It also leaves a good impression wherever you go. You do not want to go to a business meeting with faded or dirty shoes. Clean and shiny shoes can also give you more confidence. It does not have to be twinkling! Just enough shine can help you stand out.

There are many ways on how to shine shoes such as fire shine and spit shine but let us stick first to the common way. Make sure that you already have all three materials: a shoe polish, soft cloth and a brush.

How to Shine Shoes

Here is a simple guide on how to shine shoes. It won’t take much time to do this and it will leave you great, nice looking shoes again.

Step 1: Get your Shoe Shining Kit

You will need your shoe shining kit or supplies. If you do not have them at home, you can buy all materials either a kit or get them individually. All you need to get are a can of shoe polish, a soft cloth and a shoe brush.

When choosing a shoe polish, check the colors in the description and make sure that it matches your shoes. You do not want to shine your shoes in different color! For soft cloth, you can also use an old shirt. An old tooth brush can also be an alternative for a shoe brush.

Step 2: Place Newspapers on your Work Place

To prevent getting polish on the floor or table, it is important to use newspapers or old magazines on the surface where you wish to work. Shoe polish is very hard to remove and you do not want to spend extra time cleaning the floor.

Step 3: Remove Excess Dirt from Shoes

Before shining your shoes, it is important to eliminate excess dirt first. You can use here a brush or a soft cloth to rub the outsoles. Simply scrub the dirt gently until no debris left on the surface. If your shoes are still dirty, you may consider cleaning them with leather cleaner before you jump to polishing.

Step 4: Apply Shoe Polish

Using a soft cloth or old t-shirt, apply enough amount of shoe polish. Make sure to avoid getting polish on the floor. Rub it gently in small circles and only use a little bit of polish at a time. If necessary, add more. But always remember that less is more! You can always add more if needed especially in the heel and toe area.

For areas that are hard to reach, use shoe brush or an old tooth brush to polish all areas. Once you are done polishing the first shoe, you can start the same procedure again with the second shoe. Allow both shoes to dry when finished.

Step 5: Brush off Excess Polish

Once completely dry, remove excess polish using a shoe brush. Brush the whole surface of the shoes evenly and move your wrists when brushing, not the elbow. Brushing your shoes produces heat which allows the polish to sink inside.

You can also use a soft cloth for this step but a shoe brush is the best to evenly distribute the polish on the whole surface.

If there are excess polishes in areas that cannot be reached, you can also use tooth brush or cotton bud to remove extra layers of polish.

See more How to decorate your shoes

Step 6: Use Cloth to Add Buff

The last step of shining the shoes is to add buff. To have great shining shoes, use a clean cloth to add more buff. You may also breathe onto the surface of the shoe as most people recommend doing it to produce more shine.

Now you are done! It is very easy to shine shoes and having nice-looking shoes can also be one of your assets. For more tips and tricks, you can check out this video.


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