Few shoes are ready to be worn straight out of the box so, when you’ve finally found a perfect pair try to resist just for a few minutes and don’t go outside immediately without taking care of some important things first. So, here’s a quick checklist of 5 important things that you should do when you get new shoes to ensure their maximum return-on-investment and longevity.
1. Clean, condition and polish
Whether you’re going to wear your new shoes in a dry and hot climate or during harsh winter with lots of snow or dirt, you need to prepare your shoes properly. We know that this part is not the most exciting, but is one of the most important ones. So don’t be lazy and spend some time to prepare your shoes for their first journey. We suggest reading our guide on how to take care of your leather shoes.
2. Break them in
When you purchase quality leather shoes for the first time you might be surprised that they are quite uncomfortable. But that is going to change as soon as you break them in. The more you wear them the more leather will soften and the shoe adapt to your feet. That’s why we suggest wearing your shoes for a few hours at a time on the first four to six outings until they feel more comfortable. Once broken in, your shoes will be comfortable for years to come and you’ll be able to wear them all day long.
3. Give it a rest
It can be tempting to wear your new shoes all the time, but this should be avoided because they absorb moisture and odour as you wear them. Give your shoes at least 24 hours of rest to let them dry out and reduce the risk of them starting to smell. We recommended wearing the same pair of shoes a maximum of three times per week.
4. Store them properly
Store your shoes in a dry location away from light, using cedar shoetrees. This way you will not only help your shoes to keep their shape better but will also help to wick moisture away from them. Avoid keeping them in plastic bags, which can lead to mould. If looking for a cheap alternative to shoe trees, stuff them with acid-free paper (not a newspaper).
5. Love them daily
At the end of the day, when you are back home, prepare your shoes for storage – give them a light brush to remove any dirt and insert shoe trees. And before going out don’t forget to prepare your shoes as well – if needed, condition the leather, apply cream and polish. If your new footwear is primarily suede, treat them with a protective spray. Don’t forget that proper care of your new shoes will extend their life by many years.