How to Clean Leather Shoes Naturally

by Rebekah Richards ; Updated September 28, 2017

Cleaning your leather shoes can help them last longer.

leather shoes image by weim from

Leather represents a highly durable and versatile material; it is used in furniture, clothing, handbags, belts and shoes. Keeping leather shoes clean and conditioned can help them look their best and last longer. Although there are many commercially available leather cleaning products, most of these products utilize common household ingredients like olive oil. Save money by cleaning your shoes with natural cleaner you can make yourself.

Mix one part rubbing alcohol with one part water.

Dampen a clean lint-free cloth with this mixture and rub the cloth on your leather shoes. This helps remove any mold or mildew on the shoes.

Allow shoes to air dry. Do not place leather shoes in direct sunlight.

Combine one part white vinegar and two parts linseed oil.

Rub this mixture into your leather shoes with another clean lint-free cloth.

Allow the mixture to soak in completely before wearing the shoes.


  • Storing leather shoes on shoe trees or stuffing them with white tissue paper can help shoes keep their shape.

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About the Author

Rebekah Richards is a professional writer with work published in the "Atlanta Journal-Constitution," "Brandeis University Law Journal" and online at She graduated magna cum laude from Brandeis University with bachelor's degrees in creative writing, English/American literature and international studies. Richards earned a master's degree at Carnegie Mellon University.