How to Clean Converse
Well-loved and clean Converse sneakers: these concepts go together like two left shoes. Clean Converse sneakers, if used often, are naturally not kept as such by their wearers. Canvas is fabric, therefore, it is a dirt magnet. Some agree that their Chucks look best when worn in rather than brand new, but if you consider yourself to be on the other side of the age-old debate, this article is for you. Many Converse owners who prefer them clean make the mistake of only cleaning their collection when it gets too dirty to ignore. This makes cleaning them harder. Although they can (or should) never be thrown in the wash, having clean Converse is easy if you have the right materials.
Pre-Cleaning Your Converse
After they have been exposed to dirt, clean Converse sneakers as soon as possible. Select a mild soap (one with a lower alkaline content, with a pH less than 8) to clean it. In this case, dish soap diluted with water is a common cleaning solution. You should dab your soap of choice on an area of the sneaker that is normally hidden when you are wearing it, such as the area underneath its laces or the outer edges of its tongue. This is to test whether the soap alters the colour of your sneakers: if it does not at first, it is a good sign, but it is important to give it an hour or so before you start a complete clean, just in case a colour change does not immediately appear. For extra unclean Converse, maximize the effectiveness of your cleaning by removing the laces from both shoes. Follow these instructions to clean Converse of canvas, leather, and suede varieties, drawn from the Converse company website:
- Remove excess dirt to clean the outsole (the part of the shoe that steps on the ground).
- Mix lukewarm water and a small amount of mild soap, as defined in the previous paragraph.
- Dampen a cloth with the soapy mixture and gently scrub affected areas. (You can use a microfiber cloth to maximize cleaning efficiency.)
Leather and Synthetic
- Remove excess dirt to clean the outsole.
- Mix lukewarm water and mild soap.
- Dampen a cloth with the soapy mixture and gently scrub affected areas.
- Brush dirt off with a suede brush.
- Do not use soap or water.
Drying your Converse
- Dry at room temperature.
- If the Converse are deflated from wetness, stuff them with paper to maintain their shape and prevent wrinkles.
- For prolonged sneaker life, avoid using direct heat – such as the blast from a hair dryer – to accelerate the drying process.
One final consideration: as Converse pleads with you four times in their cleaning guide: never, ever machine wash or dry your Converse.