How to Shine Your Shoes on a Budget

Gentlemen, there are some things in life that we just need to know as men. And shining your own shoes is one of them. Sure, I enjoy the little things in life that a gentleman enjoys like a hot lather shave, a nice cigar and getting my shoes shined. But there are those moments in life when we don’t have the time to go get our shoes shined or when we need to save a buck or two. And this is when our manly trait kicks in.

First, let’s make sure we have everything we need to shine our shoes.

  • Shine Brush

  • Shine Cloth

  • Shoe Polish

  • Dauber/Soft Cloth

  • Scotch

  • Cup

  • Newspaper

  • Shoe Tree

  • Leather Cleaner

Now let’s get started!

Step 1: Lay Down Some Newspaper

Shoe shine will stain anything it gets on and you don’t want that stuff on your floor or table.

Step 2: Remove Shoe Laces

You want to make sure to remove the laces before shining your shoes so your able to shine the tongue of the shoe and get inside every nook and cranny.

Step 3: Insert Shoe Tree

Insert the shoe tree to stretch out the leather for a flat surface to work on.

Step 4: Dust Your Shoes

Remove any dust or dirt off your shoe with your brush.

Step 5: Apply Leather Cleaner

To get the best shine on your shoe, you need to remove any oils or residue with a leather cleaner before applying shoe polish. Use an old tee shirt to apply the leather cleaner and rub it around the entire shoe in small circular motions.

Step 6: Apply Shoe Polish

Now it’s time to select and apply our polish. You want to select a polish that matches the color of your shoe. Black shoe, black polish. Light brown shoe, light brown polish etc.

Next, use the dauber or soft cloth to apply the polish. Use a generous amount and apply in a circular motion. Once we’ve covered the entire shoe with polish, let it set for 5 to 10 minutes.

Tip: Have different daubers/soft clothes for each polish color.

Step 7: Apply Scotch

Now pay very close attention to this part. This is the secret to getting that extra polished shoe shine! Grab your cup and pour yourself a glass of scotch while you wait for the polish to dry. I’m being serious here. Many things can go wrong here if you don’t keep a close eye on your shoes to make sure they dry properly. What that is, I don’t know. But at least you’ll have glass of scotch to deal with it.

Step 8: Polish The Shoe

Take a soft cotton cloth and begin to polish your shoe until the leather begins to shine. You can either polish the shoes while on your feet or keep the shoe tree in. Whatever is easier for you.

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Until Next Time, Gents!

Steve A. Nuñez

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