Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Mr. Moo, Feb 28, 2011.
How did you get wax inside your shoes?
Pick off what you can, and then try rubbing alcohol, if that doesn't work try meltonian color preparer, or angelus deglazer. After you use this stuff make sure to condition heavily.
Can you just flex the soles and see if the wax cracks and comes off?
I had a pair of EG which were caked full of wax polish when I received them.
I used a mixture of white spirits and water (50/50) which removed the build up very effectively.
As PB said - make sure you use lots of conditioner afterwards.
Oh just found the original thread:
How did they get full of candle wax in the first place? pics?
Was hunting around for a witty image retort but all NSFW
From what I understand, the wax is on the uppers, not inside the shoe, correct? If I'm wrong, I too would be curious to know how that got inside... If the wax is on the uppers, something similar happened to me, and I managed to get it all out There were some candles lining a walkway (who thought of this?) and the bloke in front of me knocked a ton of wax all over my shoes and suit.
But I agree with PatrickBooth, do try to pick out as much as you can first. If the wax is not already coming off easily, I recommend *not* flexing to see if it comes off, as in my experience this can make the wax simply crack into several smaller pieces that are then more difficult to remove, especially in creases. If you are scared to scratch the leather using a fingernail, try some thin non-corrugated cardboard (as in the backing of a steno pad). Then try matching the curvature of the shoe with the cardboard and come at the edge of the wax at a slight angle to the horizontal surface of the shoe, maybe 10 degrees. Be very patient and work in a continuous direction in a methodical manner, and it should mostly come off. It helps to take out the shoe trees and hold the leather from the inside, so you can add some extra pressure to gently flex the leather away from the wax as you scrape. I managed to get out all of mine this way, except for a little around the welt.
I hope your leather is not a matte finish as mine was, but it should still work if it is. If at the end you still have stubborn spots, I would try dampening a soft cloth with very warm water trying to soften the wax to get it out; you can wrap a finger in the warm, dampened cloth and use your covered fingernail to push the wax out. Then you can repeat using the technique above.
If the wax is inside the shoe, I am less confident this technique would prove fruitful.
its not that dangerous to use turpentine spirit or deglazer. for stubborn wax, use very fine steel wool to rub it off.
that's not damage, just reaction. let dry and the leather will go back to normal.
All right, thanks for the advice, I'll try some methods later today.
Of course, the wax is on the outside of the shoe. Were it on the inside, it would've been a lot trickier.
Also Patrick et al, what do you think of using Saphir Cleaning Soap or Saddle soap before doing my first Reno?
From the Hanger Project website it does say the soap is great at removing polish build up and excessive pigments, so I'm thinking it might lighten the shoes simply by removing the wax polish that has built up over time.
I love Kirby, but I disagree. I would never use saddle soap on anything that flexes. Saddle soap is pretty harsh. In my opinion, using water to generate a lather to put on leather is like using a fork to get a hair out of your eye.
Gee.......thanks for the suggestion!
On my way to emergency room now.........................
Saint Crispins also suggested yearly cleaning with saddle soaps. My shoes so far are still alive and well, but then they are not 10 years old yet...
Saddle Soap doesn't remove polish well IME. But it all depends on how thick the polish is.
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