How To Clean Suede Shoes With Baking Soda In 4 Steps [2022]

Although suede shoes are a popular choice for many people, they can be difficult to clean and keep looking new. In this post, we will show you how to clean suede shoes with baking soda, which is a natural and effective way to remove dirt and stains. We’ll also provide some tips on how to care for your suede shoes so that they stay looking good for as long as possible.

What is suede?

Suede is a type of leather that has a napped surface. It is often made from cow, lamb, deer, or goat hide. Is suede leather? No, the fabric is usually made from cotton or polyester which is then coated with an oil-based solution. The thickness of the coating determines whether it will be considered nubuck or suede.

how to clean suede shoes with baking soda

What is the suede fabric? This is another term for the napped surface seen on suede shoes and other items. It can also refer to fabrics with similar textures to suede which is meant for use as upholstery.

Suede is often used for loafers, moccasins, slippers, boots, and flats. It also has a long history as a material that can be used for jackets and coats.

Methods How To Clean Suede

How to clean suede shoes. There are many different ways to clean suede shoes, some of which involve the use of harsh chemicals. Here, we’ll show you an easy method for cleaning suede shoes with baking soda, as well as how to care for your shoes after cleaning them.

How To Clean Suede Shoes With Baking Soda

This is a great method to clean suede shoes with baking soda because it uses a natural substance that is gentle on the material, but very effective at breaking up dirt particles.

Sodium bicarbonate (better known as baking soda) removes stains by pulling excess oils and dirt from the fabric fibers of your shoes. This oil stain suede baking soda also acts as an odor remover because it absorbs moisture that can contribute to mold growth.

what you’ll need:

  • Water
  • A toothbrush or soft brush (to loosen up stains and dirt)
  • Waterproofer (optional)

1. Make a mixture of one part water and one part baking soda in a bowl, and mix it together until the baking soda is completely dissolved.

2. Dip the brush in the mixture and use it to scrub away any stains or dirt. You can also pour a small amount of the mixture onto a cloth, and use that to clean your shoes instead of using a brush.

3. Rinse out your brushes, cloths, and bowl after each round so that they are ready for the next step.

4. Once you have cleaned off all visible stains or dirt, let your shoes dry overnight or until they are completely dry. Afterward, you should apply a waterproofer to protect them from future damage. Your suede shoes will look brand new!

Tips For Maintaining Suede Shoes

how to clean suede shoes with vinegar

Even after thoroughly cleaning them with baking soda, many people find that their suede shoes quickly pick up a layer of dirt again. Here are a few tricks for how to clean suede shoes in order to keep them in good condition for longer:

Use a waterproofer to protect your shoes from stains and moisture – Apply the waterproofer directly to your shoe, and be sure to let it air dry afterward so that it can properly soak into the fabric.

Use protection sprays on your shoes before you wear them – This will act as an invisible barrier between your shoes and anything else that might get on them while you’re wearing them. Make sure to read the product’s label beforehand, so that you choose one with suede-friendly materials.

Brush off any dirt or dust after each use – To keep your suede looking clean, try brushing it with a soft brush or lint roller before putting them away.

Replace shoes that are beyond repair – If you notice any holes, stains, or other signs of damage, it’s probably time to retire those shoes, better to recycle or donate them and invest in a new pair. Even if you clean them well, your shoes will still start wearing out after enough use.


Q. Can you use vinegar and baking soda on suede?

A. You can use either one, but we like using baking soda instead of vinegar because it is gentler on the fabric. Cleaning suede with vinegar can require a second, separate step to remove the smell afterward. In this detailed guide, we have shared how to clean suede shoes with baking soda?

Q. What household item cleans suede shoes?

A. A toothbrush and a soft-bristled brush can both be used to clean your shoes. Toothbrushes work well for getting into the grout of Vibram soles, while a regular brush will remove dirt from the fabric.

Q. What kind of water is best when cleaning suede shoes?

A. Distilled water is the best for cleaning suede leather, but you can also use tap water that has been mixed with detergent.

Q. How do you clean suede naturally?

A. Mix warm water with a few drops of dish soap. Use a toothbrush to scrub the soles, then rinse with cold water and allow to air dry. For fabric areas, use a brush or cloth soaked in a baking soda solution.

Q. How do you clean suede shoes DIY?

A. Use a toothbrush to scrub the soles, then rinse with cold water and allow to air dry. If there is dirt on the fabric parts of your shoes, make a baking soda solution. Use a soft brush or lint roller for this as well.

Q. When should I wash my suede shoes?

A. It is best to avoid washing suede shoes as much as possible. However, if an accident occurs where they become dirty or stained, you can always follow the tips above without even needing water. If there is excess dirt on the shoe that cannot be removed through brushing only, then adding water will help loosen it up so that it can be brushed off.

Q. How often should I clean my suede shoes?

A. You should try to clean them before dirt becomes embedded in the fibers of your shoes, but if you wait too long, even these suede cleaner homemade methods might not be enough to remove all stains or grime. If this happens, then adding water may help loosen up tough dirt particles that cannot be easily removed through brushing alone. Remember that suede is a very sensitive material and using water may affect its texture and original appearance.

Q. Is it okay to wash suede with soap?

A. Strong soaps like dish detergent are best avoided because they have chemicals that may irritate the skin on your feet. However, mild soaps are generally safe to use on suede shoes, provided that you rinse them off well and air dry before wearing them.

Q. Can I use a shower puff to clean my suede shoes?

A. Shower puffs tend to build up a lot of lint and dirt over time, so it is best to avoid using them on your suede shoes. Try using a toothbrush or other small, soft brush instead.

Q. Is it okay to wear suede shoes in the rain?

A. Suede is not very water-resistant at all, so we do not recommend getting it wet if possible. However, for those who wish to wear their shoes during the rain anyway, applying a waterproofer beforehand will help keep moisture out more effectively than simply hoping they won’t get wet (which will not always work).

Q. How should I store my suede shoes?

A. It is best to leave your suede shoes out in the open so that they can breathe. Storing them away in a closed box for too long may cause the fibers to lose their elasticity and become dry over time, which affects the texture of the shoe.

Q. Can you stretch suede shoes at home?

A. Unfortunately, there are no simple ways to stretch suede shoes because it will damage them beyond repair if done incorrectly. If they are too small or tight on you already, you could try adding insoles or heel liners inside to make them roomier without having to undo any seams. Be sure to use materials that are soft enough not to make the shoes wear out prematurely.

Q. Can you put suede shoes in the washing machine?

No! This will ruin your shoes completely. Put them in a bucket with water and detergent, then soak them for at least an hour. After this, you can use a brush or cloth to clean the material parts of your shoes, then soak again in a separate mixture of warm water and baking soda. If you must use a washing machine, then we recommend turning the shoes inside out and using the gentlest cycle to prevent damage.

Q. Can you put suede shoes in the dryer?

A. No, only hang them up to dry after washing or scrubbing them with baking soda. It will ruin your shoes if they are tumble-dried!

Q. How do I clean suede loafers?

A. Use a toothbrush to scrub the soles of your shoes. Clean the uppers with a cloth soaked in water and baking soda, or just use a normal brush to get rid of stains.

Q. Can suede hold up in the rain?

A. Yes, but it takes a long time to dry afterward! It is best to use an umbrella if you plan on wearing your shoes in rainy weather.


Suede is a delicate material that requires careful cleaning to avoid damaging it. How to clean suede shoes with baking soda? By using baking soda to make your own suede-cleaning paste, you can effectively remove dirt and stains in a safe way without having to worry about ruining your favorite pair of shoes. Remember that even with the most thorough cleaning, suede is still a sensitive material that may not be suitable for all people. Be sure to resume regular care and maintenance of your suede shoes after the baking soda treatment is complete to keep them in good condition for long-term use.

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