It's said we take up to nearly 7,000 steps a day. Given that most of this happens while in a pair of shoes, you can imagine the wear and tear that takes place on our footwear. But fortunately, most shoes are relatively tough and built to withstand the job, requiring only minimal regular care. The key is all in the maintenance and cleaning, and of course, the tools you have on hand. Regardless of whether you're a sneaker type or walking about in suede or leather, you should get your footwear collection on a regular routine of cleaning and protecting to keep it in top shape. Not only will your shoes look better, they'll last longer. First, a good protectant spray is important. Virtually most store bought brands are fine and will work with a variety of materials. You'll want to test an area on the shoe first, and of course, follow the instructions on the can. Polish is also essential -- go with a clear to work with most leather styles. A soft cloth, polish brush and suede brush will make the work easier. Clean and spray shoes every season or so thereafter.
Shoe care essentials: Any good spray protector should work, Tectron; Meltonian polish is recommended by top cobblers, Meltonian; A good polish brush and a suede brush (found at most stores) will make caring for footwear easier.