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shoe polish safety

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 
As a long term user of wax shoe polishes and cream conditioners I have become more concerned about the potential long term health effects of their use. Is there any information on particular brands/manufacturers/ ingredients of polish/conditioner being safer than others?
post #2 of 37
Are you concerned about inhaling fumes? Or that somehow the polish would be absorbed into your skin? Both? Honestly, I haven't thought about it. I try not to get any on my hands, though. Some polishes are stubborn to remove.
post #3 of 37
Wear rubber or latex gloves
post #4 of 37
Thread Starter 
I use latex rubber gloves when polishing; the throw away type that doctors use for medical exams. Very inexpensive and easy to use; throw them away after each use. I am concerned about inhalation and eye irritation. Even in a reasonably ventilated area eye irritation often occurs. With the strong smell of industrial type chemicals from the paste/conditioner, there has to be some concern.

For example the Kiwi pastes are heavily based on naphtha, an industrial solvent. The Saphir products ( which I believe are repackaged and
sold by Weston, Berlutti, Lobb) appear to be a turpentine and beeswax product. I would be interested in knowing who manufactures Edward Green, C&J, and Grenson pastesI. have no information on what AppleCare Leather Condioner is based on.

I use the AppleCare product as a combined condioner/cleaner and have had exccellent results useing it on each pair of shoes every three wearings {plus or minus).
post #5 of 37
I haven't had the problem of eye irritation before. Why not do the polishing outside or near an open window. That should eliminate most of the fumes. I'm not sure about specific brands, but I'd suspect there is likely some all-natural or organic product available.
post #6 of 37
Naptha is a carcinogen...
post #7 of 37
To be honest, I feel that at any given time so many different things are giving me cancer that it really isn't worth thinking about. I've never had eye or skin irritation or anything else but black fingernails and occasional dry skin from using shoe polishes, acetone, shoe cleaner, etc.

If you are really worried, you may be able to look up the MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) for any product you're thinking of using. They are required to be filed on industrial products made for the USA market, IIRC. I'm not sure where you look it up, but I know they are available. You could contact the manufacturer as well.
post #8 of 37
to get rid of stubborn kiwi or any polish stains on your fingers use 409 kitchen degreaser, spray some onto your fingertips, rub for about a minute and wash off with hot water.

409 is a carcinogen as well. also the air outside you breathe aint too good as well.
post #9 of 37
In terms of conditioners, I actually emailed Lexol about their product, asking whether there was anything dangerous in it (I have small children), but they never responded. Still, Ron Rider from Franco's wrote in one of his post that it's harmless, so I tend to believe that.
post #10 of 37
I've been using all manner of shoe polishes, waxes and other shoe care products pretty regularly for the past 50+ years without any thoughts or cares about ventilation, contact with my bare hands or whatnot. I currently seem to be enjoying vigorous good health as I start closing in on my 65th b-day, so it obviously hasn't done me any great harm!
post #11 of 37
Surely shoe polish is a very minor threat give given the big ones of smoking, over-eating, over-drinking, etc. Studies suggest that it's the length of exposure that is the biggest threat.
post #12 of 37
in lieu of the diminishing supply of grade-a crack in our neighborhood, i have now moved to inhaling kiwi shoe polish. seriously, just shine your shoes in a well-ventilated place.
post #13 of 37
I must apologize in advance for the fact that my first post is a schill. Recently I started to import an Organic Shoe Polish from Germany called Tapir. It seems that many people hate the smell of most polishes while the Tapir polish has a nice Citrus scent. I've used a certain popular polish for years and love it aside from the smell. I'm not sure if this product will fly in the States but I'm hopeful. I'm currently testing it with a few folks and am awaiting the results. I've tried it on my own shoes was very happy with it. Our site will be complete soon and product is on the way. This may prove to be an alternative to some of the good polishes that reek,lol. Take care of yourself and your shoes. Peter www.Snapppydressers.com
post #14 of 37
Welcome Peter, and if your looking for any more testers...give me a PM!
post #15 of 37
MSDS info can be readily found on the internet (i.e., google).

Originally Posted by kitonbrioni View Post
Surely shoe polish is a very minor threat give given the big ones of smoking, over-eating, over-drinking, etc. Studies suggest that it's the length of exposure that is the biggest threat.

length of exposure can give you estimates for acute diseases, but more importantly chronic ones (like cancer) are measured over multiple exposures (shoe polishing).
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