On more than a few occasions people have asked about my military service. I’ve never served a day. I ask why they assume I’ve served (I always assume it’s my short hair or my odd habit of giving a half salute as a greeting). It’s my shoes. I know how to shine shoes until they’re mirrors. I learned from my father who did serve in the national guard so my shoe shine training does come from the military.
A shined pair of shoes compliments every outfit. It dresses up the casual and acts as the finishing touch to formal attire. It also makes a man feel good. Not just the wearing but the polishing of shoes.
Every man should know to shine shoes. It’s a therapeutic endeavor. There are few things more satisfying than a row of freshly shined shoes lining the closet.
If you’ve never taken the time to shine your shoes, now’s your chance. Here’s everything a man needs to know about shoe shining and how to shine shoes back to new.
How To Shine Shoes Back To New
- Prep the area: Find an old towel or newspaper to spread over the area you will be working on. Shoe polish has an uncanny ability to get smeared everywhere even when you’re being extremely careful…and it’s really hard to get out of carpet.
- Strip off old polish: Rubbing alcohol works as a good polish stripper. Do it every so often, especially to boots, because dirt gets embedded into the polish over time.
- Use a brush: Clean any dust or dirt off your boots with a horsehair shine brush or a damp rag if you don’t own a brush. But you should get a brush.
- Add the polish: Use a shoe polish brush to cover the entire shoe with a healthy amount of polish. Give the shoes about 20 minutes to dry.
- Brush again: Brush the entire shoe using the horsehair shine brush to remove excess polish.
- Buff to a shine: An old pair of socks, used dish rags, or even a pair of your wife’s pantyhose will work as a good buffer. If she’s not willing to part with those, ask for some make-up removal pads.
How To Shine Shoes [Video Tutorial]
Shoe Shining Tips To Remember
– Tins of shoe polish come in a variety of colors, from browns to blacks to neutrals. Make every attempt to find a polish that’s as close to the original color of the shoe as possible.
– Polishes are also available in both wax and cream varieties. Cream polishes make leather easier to work with, whereas wax polishes make the shoes more water resistant. Pick up a tin of each and alternate every second polish.
– To get black boots super shiny, put a coat of Blue Lincoln wax on and buff it out.
Good luck and happy polishing.