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How To Clean Your Vans Sneakers

July 31, 2022 8:28 PM
How To Clean Your Vans Sneakers

Dirty sneakers? Today we're going to look at how you can best clean your Vans!

Can't I just stick them in a washing machinet? Well, that's exactly what you shouldn't do with your Vans. However, it's not too difficult or time-consuming to clean your Vans properly and make them shine like new. All you need is a few home remedies, lukewarm water and maybe a little leather care.

Our beloved Vans, which are specially designed to withstand the rigours of the skate park, lose their cleanliness after a while. White Vans especially can get dirty quickly. Small stains and rough dirt can be wiped off quickly, but what if the shoes have really suffered? Now you can find out how to get your Vans clean again!

Some general information to start with: Before you start cleaning, you should find a place that is a bit protected. Either go outside, or into the cellar, or put a sheet underneath so as not to mess up your surroundings.

You've picked a good place to clean your vans? Great! Then you can take the laces out now. You can then clean the laces by hand in lukewarm water with a little washing-up liquid or detergent. If you want, you can also put them in a washing bag in the washing machine. The next step, regardless of the sneaker, is to remove the rough dirt first, if there is any. You are well equipped with a soft brush. But be careful with your Vans and don't start scrubbing right away.

In the next step, we have to take a look at the material our Vans model is made of. The rubber outsole is always the same, we'll get to that later. But every upper material needs its own care. Canvas, leather, suede? If you're not sure, inside the shoes you'll find a little note somewhere with the info you're looking for! One more important tip before we start: no matter what material, the cleaning agent should never be applied directly to the sneaker. Take a brush or a cloth and dip it into your stuff. Then you can carefully work the shoe with it.

Vans Era
Unsplash by: Dickens Sikazwe

How to clean canvas properly

Let's start with the canvas upper, which makes up the majority of all Vans sneakers. First of all, we need an old toothbrush or any other small brush. We also need a soft cloth and warm water. We then add a little washing-up liquid or detergent or something similar to the water. With this, we can now tackle the stains. Firstly put the detergent on the brush, and then carefully work the upper with it.

For stains that won't come out, don't rub too much. If it is hopeless, even with a little patience, then we have to resort to a special stain remover. For the worst stains like oil, grass, and mud, you need a professional cleaner.

For white sneakers that don't want to turn white anymore, baking soda or baking powder is suitable. Simply add a little of it to warm water and go over the cleaned shoe again!

At the end, we wipe the shoe again with a clean, damp cloth and remove the residue. You can then dry the upper properly with a small towel. Then we put the sneakers somewhere to dry. The best place is outside in the sun, of course, or somewhere where it can air dry. To make sure the Vans dry even better after cleaning and don't stay wet on the inside for long, you can stuff them with towels, kitchen roll or newspaper.

Sk8 High Vans
Unsplash by Maxwell Nelson

How to clean leather and suede

For leather and suede Vans, we also start by brushing off the rough dirt. Then we need water and a little white vinegar. With a soft cloth, you can then use the mixture for darker, heavier stains on the upper. Make sure that the shoes don't get too soaked with water. For the Vans stripe on the side, you can try using an eraser for coarse stains.

It is important that you never immerse suede and leather shoes completely in water, as this is not good for the material and will not get you anywhere. For stubborn problems with a leather upper, we recommend professional cleaning agents. Vans itself recommends: Nikwax!

How to clean the insole and outsole of your sneaker

The inside of your sneakers sometimes gets quite a beating. If you want to clean them for the sake of completeness, you can make a paste out of baking soda and mild detergent. Simply spread it on the inside with a toothbrush, wait 15 minutes and then rinse.

The rubber outsole also takes a beating! After all, it's there to protect you and your shoe! Here we use either white vinegar, lemon juice or a little rubbing alcohol. Again, use a small brush and then work in circles on the outsole. When you do this, it's best to protect the upper before cleaning. A bit of tape, like when painting, can help you here. If you want to go even further, you can also use bleach. But be especially careful and watch out for yourself, the upper and your surface.

If you keep all this in mind, you should be able to clean your vans and make them shine again in no time!

Old Skool Vans
Unsplash by Hayley Wagner

In every sneaker shop you'll be asked at the checkout if you want waterproofing stuff. Saying yes once definitely won't hurt! Then you can protect your shoes a little bit right after you buy them and you'll have that chic, clean style for longer.

You don't have any vans to clean yet? Click on the button to see our selection of Vans sneakers and you're sure to find what you're looking for!