Best Shoe Protection Spray Reviewed & Rated

Shoes are a very large investment in our every day lives. The importance of shoes is endless. Maintaining your shoes can be very difficult to do if you don’t take a few simple steps. Without giving your shoes attention or maintenance, they can become damaged or destroyed in a very short amount of time, leading to wasting excessive amounts of money.

Last Updated: February 22, 2018
By Alice Frutis:

This update adds five more of the best shoe protection sprays to the list, bringing it to a grand total of 15 of the best shoe protection sprays that have been reviewed and rated. A criteria for selection section has been added to give you tips and advice on how to choose the best shoe protection spray for yourself! Finally, a frequently asked questions section has been added to address some of the most commonly asked questions about shoe protection sprays and their use.

Featured Recommendations 

Scotchgard Suede & Nubuck
  • Scotchgard Suede & Nubuck
  • 4.7 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Odorless
  • Price: See Here
UGG Australia Stain & Water
  • UGG Australia Stain & Water
  • 4.6 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Bidegradable
  • Price: See Here
Kiwi Boot Protector
  • Kiwi Boot Protector
  • 4.4 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Protective Barrier
  • Price: See Here

Moisture is the leading cause of all damage, fungus, and wear and tear on shoes. As shoes are important to us, protection sprays can be just as important. With the use of protection spray, you can save your shoes from everyday damage as well as your feet. When water hits your shoe, it can soak into the sole creating a hazardous breeding ground for bacteria. These bacterias can cause several foot fungus’ and lead to an uncomfortable life. Aside from that, shoes are susceptible to a lot of damage when not protected. Stains, rot, creases and more can cause damage and eventually lead to holes and many more issues within your shoes in a matter of weeks or months. Each spray that is on the market is available at your disposal, but may not be the ultimate protection that you need. Picking out a shoe spray is incredibly important.

 

 

15 Best Shoe Protection Sprays

 

 

1. Scotchgard Suede & Nubuck

The Scotchgard Suede & Nubuck Protector is a simple one step protectant that is designed to keep precipitation and moisture away from your shoes at all times. With this, it prevents moisture from damaging the materials and the sole of the shoe, keeping long lasting durability. Safe for all types of colors, this is a clean protectant spray that will save your shoes for long time use.
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Odorless
The Scotchgard Suede & Nubuck Protector is an odorless protectant. That being said, spray this on your shoes, inside and out and keep them safe from all damages caused by water and moisture.

Salt and stain Resistant
The Scotchgard Suede & Nubuck Protector is amazing when it comes to protecting. The active ingredients in this shoe protector help prevent against salt stains and other stains that your shoes may encounter from every day use.

Cost and Value
As you can see, the Scotchgard Suede & Nubuck Protector is top rated for many reasons. With the amount of benefits that this shoe protectant has, you will be sure the your shoes and the materials that they are made with will last for a long time. The price is right on the Scotchgard Suede & Nubuck Protector.
Pros
  • Resists Salt
  • Resists Stains
  • Waterproofing Properties
  • Helps Maintain Materials
Cons
  • Not for Use on Smooth Leathers

2. Ugg Australia Stain & Water

This non-toxic, biodegradable, shoe protectant is made specifically for sheep skin boots or suede. The one step application makes protecting a piece of cake. Just spray and save with the UGG Australia Stain & Water Repellent. This protectant allows you to save your shoes from water and stain damage, making the UGG Australia Stain & Water Repellent a #1 Favorite.
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Non-Toxic and Biodegradable
The UGG Australia Stain & Water Repellent is a non-toxic and biodegradable spray that is safe to use in enclosed spaces. Have no fear of toxic inhalants with the UGG Australia Stain & Water Repellent.

Moisture Protection
The UGG Australia Stain & Water Repellent is bound to repel environmental hazards and moisture. The UGG Australia Stain & Water Repellent keeps water out of the shoe and keeps up the durability of each material that it protects.

Cost and Value
The UGG Australia Stain & Water Repellent is an all around sheepskin and suede protectant that is both biodegradable and non-toxic. The safety features allow you to spray your shoes in enclosed areas with a non-toxic, odorless, pump. The UGG Australia Stain & Water Repellent not only acts as a protectant but as a cleaner as well, removing any stains that your shoes may encounter.
Pros
  • Water Resistant
  • Stain Repelling Features
  • Non-Toxic
  • Biodegradable
  • Easy Pump
Cons
  • Limited to Suede and Sheepskin Products

3. Kiwi Boot Protector

The Kiwi Boot Protector has a lot to offer your shoes and other items in your household. Made to keep investments durable, the Kiwi Boot Protector has a unique ingredient that safely blocks your shoes from penetrating moistures and stains. With an easy spray feature, the Kiwi Boot Protector makes protecting your shoes incredibly easy and leaves them maintenance free.
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Odorless
The Kiwi Boot Protector comes from and aerosol spray can that you spray on your shoes. When this shoe protectant first sprays, there is a slight odor but as soon as the Kiwi Boot Protector forms and bonds to your work boots, it leaves a safe odorless barrier behind.

Main Ingredient
The Kiwi Boot Protector has a main ingredient that is designed to form and bond to the shoe, leaving a protective barrier against water and stains. The silicone formula is unique and maintains a constant protection for up to 6 months!

Cost and Value
With such a strong bonding material, the Kiwi Boot Protector offers a unique silicone material that seals your shoes and maintains the durability that they were built with. Blocking water and stains, the Kiwi Boot Protector is one of the best shoe protectants on the market.
Pros
  • Silicone Material
  • Bonding
  • Odorless
  • Water Resistant
Cons
  • Odor When Sprayed

4. Rust-Oleum 280886 NeverWet

4. Rust-Oleum 280886 NeverWet
The Rust-Oleum 280886 NeverWet is an odorless and silicone free product that assists in keeping the items in original and natural condition. No barriers are added to the material that will coat, causing further damage. With the Rust-Oleum 280886 NeverWet, it is both water and stain resistant and is an easy one-step application. Featuring a spray bottle, it is safe to put on in enclosed areas and does not require an aerosol can.
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Breathable
Unlike silicone products, the Rust-Oleum 280886 NeverWet is a breathable shoe protectant that allows products to breath and maintain a natural airflow. The breathability features allow natural and flexible movements while protecting for months at a time.

NeverWet Technology
The Rust-Oleum 280886 NeverWet offers a specialized technology that is bound to keep your products safe and stain free. NeverWet is made to repel water, dirt, mud, and stains, keeping a new like shine to each and every shoe.

Cost and Value
At this price, the Rust-Oleum 280886 NeverWet is bound to pay for itself over and over again. Offering an excellent repelling system, the NeverWet technology will maintain the natural appearance of the shoe while repelling natural hazards like dirt, mud, sleet, and salt. Keep your shoes and boots fresh and natural with the Rust-Oleum 280886 NeverWet.
Pros
  • Easy Application
  • Repels Nature's Hazards
  • Non-Silicone
  • Easy Spray Bottle
  • Safe
Cons
  • Can Leave White Residue on Some Materials

5. The Art of Crep Protect Spray

5. The Art of Crep Protect Spray
The Art of Crep Protect Spray is here to protect and save your shoes from long nights out on the town or natural hazards that nature throws your way! The nightmare of your fresh shoes being destroyed is a thing in the past with The Art of Crep Protect Spray. Shield and protect your shoes from moisture and stains with this aerosol can spray! For what it is worth, save your investment!
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Invisible
The Art of Crep Protect Spray is a very suitable spray that will stop anything bad from entering the shoe. This spray comes out of an aerosol can and remains invisible from the time it leaves the can to the time it dries on your shoes. Say goodbye to the light layers of spray with The Art of Crep Protect Spray.

Versatile
The Art of Crep Protect Spray is made to protect a variety of shoes. Keeping your shoes protected will ensure the life of them and their durability. The Art of Crep Protect Spray is a versatile spray that maintains suede, nubuck, and canvas.

Cost and Value
The Art of Crep Protect Spray is an invisible spray that is bound to keep your shoes in like new condition. Keeping moisture, mud, and dirt out of your shoes is incredibly important and with The Art of Crep Protect Spray, that is just what you will be doing. Your shoes will be protected and made to last for much longer than intended with The Art of Crep Protect Spray.
Pros
  • Invisibile
  • Easy 1 Step Application
  • Up to 6 Months Protection
  • Easy Aerosol Spray
Cons
  • Not Intended for Leather
  • Small Odor

6. Sof Sole Water Proofer

6. Sof Sole Water Proofer
The Sof Sole Water Proofer Moisture Repellant is a versatile repellent that is safe for use on more than just shoes. Repelling water and stains, this shoe protectant comes in an easy to use spray can and goes on clean and invisible. After application, you will notice a scent free, breathable atmosphere for your shoes that will not become wet or stained.
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Fluoropolymer
The Sof Sole Water Proofer Moisture Repellant uses a specialized ingredient that is designed to allow a natural and breathable atmosphere for your shoes. The fluoropolymer goes on clear and dries invisible for long lasting protection.

Easy Spray Nozzle
The easy spray nozzle on the Sof Sole Water Proofer Moisture Repellant makes using this shoe protectant a one step application. Just spray on and watch magic happen.

Cost and Value
If you are looking for a safe and easy, 1-step application, than the Sof Sole Water Proofer Moisture Repellant is the shoe protectant for you. Easy to spray on, the Sof Sole Water Proofer Moisture Repellant is a fluoropolymer compound that goes on invisible but keeps shoes breathable to help maintain their natural state. This spray is also versatile and made for use on several other items.
Pros
  • Fluoropolymer Compound
  • Maintains Natural State
  • Breathable
  • Easy Spray Can
  • Versatile for more than Shoes
Cons
  • Smells Strong at Application

7. Meltonian Water & Stain

7. Meltonian Water & Stain
The Meltonian Water & Stain Protector is an amazing shoe protectant that can be used on several different materials. This shoe protectant is designed to help maintain the life of the shoe, allow it to breathe, and help block water and stains. Known to also prevent stains from oil, the Meltonian Water & Stain Protector does it all. This shoe protectant spray is a one time application and lasts several months.
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Barrier
The Meltonian Water & Stain Protector provides your shoe a healthy environment. All around breathable and lightweight, this shoe protectant will allow your shoes to remain in their natural state and protect against destruction.

Invisible
The Meltonian Water & Stain Protector is one of a kind. Say goodbye to light colored films on your shoes after using basic protectant sprays. The Meltonian Water & Stain Protector is a one step, smooth application, that goes on invisible, each and every time.

Cost and Value
Overall, the Meltonian Water & Stain Protector is one of the greatest protectors on the market because of its breathability properties. This shoe protectant prevents leathers and suedes to remain in their natural state with no shrinking or cracking. Known to protect from water, dirt, and mud, the Meltonian Water & Stain Protector also blocks out oil and other materials like salt, to prevent stains. At a price this good, you can't resist.
Pros
  • Invisible
  • One Step Application
  • Easy Spray Can
  • Water Resistant
Cons
  • Aerosol

8. Anuschka Leather Protector

8. Anuschka Leather Protector
This shoe protectant is specifically designed to maintain colors within leathers while blocking them from the elements in your every day life. The Anuschka, Leather Protector is designed to make your shoes last a life time and remain breathable throughout the life of the wear. This shoe protectant goes on clear and dries invisible. Odor free, this non-toxic shoe protectant is easy and safe to use wherever you are.
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Preservation
The Anuschka, Leather Protectors designed to keep your items long lasting and in beautiful condition. The preservation that the Anuschka, Leather Protector is unlike any other and maintains a natural state for all leathers.

Protectors
The Anuschka, Leather Protector goes on invisible and attaches to the leathers in a clear and clean fashion. Due to the Anuschka, Leather Protector being a non-silicone product, there will not be a hazy layer over your shoes, leaving beauty to pop.

Cost and Value
The Anuschka, Leather Protector is guaranteed to keep your shoes in their natural state and natural beauty using an invisible barrier that is bound to protect your shoes. This shoe protectant is a well liked product for any leather materials as it prevents shrinking and any stains from the elements.
Pros
  • Invisible
  • Non-Toxic
  • Preserves Color
  • Maintains Natural State
  • Water Barrier
Cons
  • Can Cap May Leak

9. TriNova Protector Spray

9. TriNova Protector Spray
The TriNova Protector Spray is a safe and easy shoe protectant that covers the entire shoe with a clean and secure barrier, preventing stains. Odorless, this is one of the safer shoe protectants and comes in a spray bottle versus an aerosol can. Use this shoe protectant to keep your shoes well preserved and ready for everyday use. With the help of the TriNova Protector Spray you will be sure to keep colors that pop, for the life of your shoe.
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Clear
The TriNova Protector Spray goes on your shoe clean and clear, preventing any stains that lower end shoe protectant sprays may cause. The TriNova Protector Spray does not leave any sticky or dusty residues behind, leaving your shoes fresh and clean.

Easy Application
With an easy hand pump spray bottle, the TriNova Protector Spray is a great way to keep shoes protected. Being one of the lowest maintenance sprays, the TriNova Protector Spray is just one spray and go, no long hours, waiting to dry!

Cost and Value
The easy to use TriNova Protector Spray is a great value for what it is worth. Clean and clear, this shoe protectant spray will go on clean and clear and leave your shoes remaining that way for use after use. The non-toxic and odor free spray is safe in any room or area, leaving no smell. Get the TriNova Protector Spray today!
Pros
  • Easy One Time Application
  • Clean and Clear
  • Odorless
  • Stain Resistent 
Cons
  • Not Waterproof

10. Nikwax Nubuck & Suede

10. Nikwax Nubuck & Suede
The highly recommended Nikwax Nubuck & Suede Spray is a great product that offers a lot of benefits to help you maintain the natural feel and look of your shoes. Clean, clear, and invisible, no need to worry about old residue. This product is incredibly eco-friendly and non-toxic, making it safe to spray. Easy one time applicant protects the shoes style and grains of leather. Don't pass on the Nikwax Nubuck & Suede Spray.
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Harmless
The Nikwax Nubuck & Suede Spray is a harmless spray that is 100% biodegradable. This spray contains all natural and safe products. Put the downside effects of fluorocarbons and VOC's in the past with the Nikwax Nubuck & Suede Spray.

Waterproof
The Nikwax Nubuck & Suede Spray is a great shoe protectant that waterproofs the leather or nubuck materials. Keeping water out with the Nikwax Nubuck & Suede Spray, you will see long lasting shoe results and no stains or cracks added to the materials!

Cost and Value
The Nikwax Nubuck & Suede Spray is a one of a kind spray that goes on easy and fast but has long lasting, satisfying results. This non-toxic and odorless spray has many added properties that makes it a one of a kind spray that you can't miss out on. Clear and residue free, this shoe supports and preserves your favorite shoes!
Pros
  • Odorless
  • Biodegradable
  • Waterproof
  • Easy to Use
Cons
  • May Darken Lighter Suedes

11. Scotchgard Outdoor

11. Scotchgard Outdoor
Scotchgard’s Outdoor Water Shield is an easy-to-use, multipurpose surface protection spray which is designed to waterproof materials, including shoes. This spray effortlessly repels moisture and provides all over protection when properly applied. The Outdoor Water Shield spray even dries quickly and only needs to be reapplied once every few months, or four times a year, making it convenient to use.
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Multipurpose
This multipurpose outdoor water protection spray by Scotchgard is safe to use on polyester, nylon, polypropylene, cotton, leather, and suede surfaces, making it a great match for most shoe materials.

Maintains Breathability
When applied, Scotchgard’s Outdoor Water Shield does not negate the breathability features of your shoes, so it’s perfect for use on running, walking, and athletic shoes with mesh upper designs.

Cost and Value
This Scotchgard waterproofing spray can be found in the low-to-middle price range and are available in packs, making this spray an affordable option for waterproofing most of your shoes safely.
Pros
  • Multipurpose
  • Maintains Breathability
  • Repels Moisture
  • Fast-Dry Spray
  • Odorless After Drying
  • One Coat Coverage
  • Re-apply Seasonally
Cons
  • May dye some surfaces
  • Does not protect against stains

12. Nikwax TX.Direct

12. Nikwax TX.Direct
NIKWAX’s TX.Direct Weatherproofing Spray is designed to weather- and waterproof breathable materials without sacrificing breathability. The spray, once applied and dried, offers long-lasting waterproofing. Its environmental-friendliness is superb and it air dries effectively. NIKWAX’s TX.Direct Weatherproofing Spray is perfect for shoes whose uppers are designed to be waterproof or water-resistant and the proofing or resistance has worn off.
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Biodegradable
NIKWAX’s TX.Direct Weatherproofing Spray is biodegradable, adding to its environmental-friendliness without sacrificing its weatherproofing performance. NIKWAX’s TX.Direct Weatherproofing Spray won’t leave behind detrimental compounds that harm the environment.

Aerosol-Free
To reduce as much environmental pollution as possible, NIKWAX’s TX.Direct Weatherproofing Spray is aerosol-free. This NIKWAX weatherproofing spray is quite environmentally friendly and very effective at waterproofing breathable shoes.

Cost and Value
This spray can be found in the middle price range. It’s affordable and offers environmental-friendliness in an industry that struggles to create effective solutions that don’t negatively impact the environment.
Pros
  • Biodegradable
  • Aerosol-Free
  • Waterproofs Surfaces
  • Maintains Breathability
  • PFC-Free
  • Water-Based Solution
  • Air Dries
Cons
  • Surfaces need to be cleaned prior to use
  • May be smelly after drying

13. Kiwi Rain and Stain

13. Kiwi Rain and Stain
Kiwi offers several shoe protection sprays and this spray is another effective option that they provide. This is a multipurpose rain and stain-proofing shoe protection spray which makes shoes easy to clean and extends their lifespan. Kiwi’s Rain and Stain Protector Spray doesn’t reduce the breathability of your shoes, either. It’s odorless after drying, dries clear. It’s fast drying, too!
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Rain and Stainproof
Kiwi’s Rain and Stain Protector prevents water damage and stains on your shoes, making the spray perfect for athletic shoes. It gives your shoes water resistance without reducing their breathability.

Multipurpose
Kiwi’s Rain and Stain Protector is safe for use on a plethora of materials used in the uppers of shoes, including suede, leather, fabric, canvas, faux suede, and synthetic meshes.

Cost and Value
Kiwi’s Rain and Stain Protector can be found in the low-to-middle price range. Given its versatility and protection against water and stains, this shoe protection spray is a great deal.
Pros
  • Rain and Stainproof
  • Multipurpose
  • Maintains Breathability
  • Odorless After Drying
  • Dries Quickly
  • Dries Clear
  • Extends the Lifespan of Shoes
Cons
  • May change the color of some materials
  • Spray has a strong odor before drying

14. Bickmore Gard-More

14. Bickmore Gard-More
Bickmore’s Gard-More Water and Stain Repellent prevents water damage and the formation of stains on your shoes regardless of whether it is made of leather, suede, fabric, felt, or nubuck. It’s a convenient and easy to use spray which dries clear and is silicone-free. It won’t be sticky, either. This shoe protection spray provides quick and complete coverage when applied.
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Maintains Breathability and Flexibility
Unlike some other shoe protection sprays, Bickmore’s Gard-More Water & Stain Repellent doesn’t reduce the breathability or flexibility of your shoe’s upper, which gives you more comfortable protection from the elements.

Silicone-Free
Some shoe protection sprays contain silicone, but silicone can dry out leather. Fortunately, Bickmore’s Gard-More Water and Stain Repellent is silicone-free so it’s safe for use on your leather shoes.

Cost and Value
You can find Bickmore’s Gard-More Water and Stain Repellent in the low price range. It’s a good deal, as it offers both water and stain resistance for many different materials.
Pros
  • Maintains Breathability and Flexibility
  • Silicone-Free
  • Offers Waterproofing and Stain-proofing
  • Offers Protection Against Scuffing
  • Multipurpose
  • Quick and Complete Coverage
  • Dries Clear
Cons
  • Spray has a strong odor prior to drying
  • May discolor some materials

15. Tarrago Hightech Nano

15. Tarrago Hightech Nano
Tarrago’s Hightech Nano Protector Spray uses water and stain resistant technologies that are based on nanotechnology. This spray is safe for use on shoes with uppers made of leather, suede, nubuck, textile materials, and combinations of all of the above! It works by coating individual fibers instead of just the shoe as a whole. This makes the spray more efficient.
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Water and Stain Resistant
Tarrago’s Hightech Nano Protector Spray is a strong water and stain resistance spray. It’s designed to reduce the amount of water that gets into your shoes and prevent stain formation.

Shoes Are Easier to Clean
Tarrago’s Hightech Nano Protector Spray prevents staining. It also makes it easier to clean your shoes if you get them dirty from any walking, running, athletics, or work you do.

Cost and Value
This spray is quite affordable and can be found in the low price range. This spray is good for many different shoe materials and this versatility adds to its value.
Pros
  • Water and Stain Resistant
  • Shoes Are Easier to Clean
  • Safe for Leather, Suede, Nubuck, and Textile Materials
  • Made of Fluorocarbon Polymers
  • Based on Nanotechnology
Cons
  • May cause minor discoloration
  • Has a foul odor during application

When looking for different shoe sprays, you will need to consider the type of material the shoe is made out of. With the amount of shoe protection sprays on the market, there is a spray made for every shoe. Leather shoes require a lot of maintenance and can damage very easily when not taken care of properly. Suede and synthetic materials succumb to moisture easily and create a breeding ground for bacteria, leading to potential foot hazards. You will need to take the right steps to keep your shoes from creating issues.

Once you have a shoe spray picked out, you can feel at ease knowing that your shoes will maintain proper health benefits and the durability that they were built with. Not only that, the shoe protection sprays protect your investment, saving hundreds of dollars in your pocket. In today’s society, no shoes are frowned upon because of the things that can be tracked place to place. That is why shoes are so important. Without shoes, we would not be able to go out most places. So making shoes last is incredibly important. After reviewing the list of shoe protection sprays, you will feel comfortable knowing there is a way to keep them safe!

 

Criteria Used to Evaluate the Best Shoe Protection Sprays

When you are looking for a shoe protection spray, before you start looking at sprays, you should consider a few things, such as:

  • what kind of protection you need
  • how much protection you need
  • what kind of shoe you are protecting
  • how much you can afford

More expensive products are not necessarily better than their more affordable counterparts and not all sprays are safe to use with all kinds of shoes! There are many other important factors to consider, but the four I just described are the most important for choosing an effective shoe protection spray. The other criteria on this list are important for choosing a convenient and affordable shoe protection spray that is also effective.

 

Type of Protection and Where You’re Going

Consider the environment you are going to be wearing your shoes in and what you will need to protect them from. If you live in an especially rainy climate, you would need more water protection than someone who lives in a dry climate. Someone who is working in or around water will need waterproofing, not water-resistant or water repellant shoes.

Proofing versus Resistances and Repellants

Something that is waterproofed will not allow water to soak the object that is protected- in this case, a shoe- while a water-resistant object will protect against some water exposure, but your shoes and feet may still become wet. A repellant shoe protection spray protects against some exposure, but not all, as with sprays that provide resistance level protection.

Resistances & Repellents

Many shoe protection sprays provide resistance and repellant-level protection. Three types are the most common: water-resistant and water repellant, salt resistant and salt repellant, and stain resistant and stain repellant.

  • Water – As described above, water-resistant and water repellant shoe protection sprays will not seal off your shoes entirely against the absorption of water. If you may be in the rain or get a little wet, this should suffice to protect your leather or suede shoes, but if you are going to be stepping in deep puddles or crossing a small body of water on foot, water-resistant sprays are not the best fit for you.
  • Salt – Salt resistance is the least common type of shoe protection spray. It’s most effective in environments which will expose your shoes to excessive amounts of salt, as is typical in the winter at higher elevations.
  • Stain – Stain resistant sprays will prevent some stains, but not all. If stains do develop on your shoes, they will be easier to remove with use of a spray that provides stain resistance.

Proofing

Many shoe protection sprays provide proofing level protection. The most common types are water and stain-proofing sprays. There are even some that come with water and stain-proofing.

  • Water – Shoe protection sprays that waterproof your shoes form a coating around the shoes which water cannot penetrate. This protects any shoe that should not get wet from being ruined by heavy water exposure, such as stepping in a large puddle, crossing a river, or any other large-scale exposure to water. However, it should be noted that no “waterproofing” spray will make your shoes completely impervious to water. If exposed to enough water, your shoes will still become saturated, so bear that in mind.
  • Stain – Stain-proofing sprays protect your shoes from stains of all kinds. They form a protective coating around your shoes which also makes your shoes easier to clean. They prevent the formation of stains.

Type of Shoes the Spray Protects

Not all protective shoe sprays are alike. Some are specialized for suede and leather only while others are for all materials that are not leather or suede. Others still are made for all material types that are used in the uppers of shoes. Naturally, you will need a spray that is safe for the shoes you want to protect. Always carefully read the label and instructions to confirm that the spray you are considering purchasing is safe for your shoes and, even then, take some time to test the spray on an inconspicuous spot to minimize the risk of damaging your shoes. If there has been no discoloration or damage to your shoe in the test area, go ahead and treat the rest of your shoes!

 

Odor

Before you purchase a shoe protection spray, be sure to look into the odors associated with the spray by checking product reviews and manufacturer information. Many shoe protection sprays are odorless after they dry, but stink up the house until they do. If it is at all possible, you should spray your shoes outside to prevent the smell permeating your home, but if that isn’t possible, you should make certain that the area you’re doing it in is well-ventilated.

Some shoe protection sprays dry and leaves an odor behind which is attached to your shoes for an extended period of time. This isn’t necessarily a dealbreaker, depending on your personal preference, but it can be inconvenient and unpleasant if it’s a particularly strong and unpleasant smell.

 

Discoloration Risk

There will always be a risk of discoloration when you are treating your shoes, especially if they are suede or leather. Some sprays, however, have less of a risk of doing that than others. Always do your research by checking out product reviews and manufacturer information to determine how likely it is to discolor your shoes. Even once you have done your research on the spray, always test the spray on a section of the shoe which would attract the least attention. If it changes the color of the shoe in that spot, then you should not apply it to the entire shoe, unless you really like the color it changed into.

 

Visibility

Some shoe protection sprays leave behind a residue or a translucent glaze, which gives the appearance of spots and uncleanliness. Look for a shoe protection spray which dries clear. Be sure to confirm that it does, in fact, become a clear coating by researching the reviews and product information on the product. Otherwise, you may wind up with a pair of dark colored leather shoes with a sticky, white residue that makes it look like you walked in salt after a hard snow.

Breathability

The best shoes are breathable, which means that they keep your feet cool and dry by allowing air to flow in and out of them with ease. If you have a pair of breathable shoes that you want to protect from water, stains, or salt, then you need to make sure that the shoe protection spray will not negate the breathability features of your shoes. Otherwise, treating your shoes to give them a longer life will turn the insides of your shoes into sweltering swamps of sweat, which contributes to the development of foul odors, blisters, bacteria, and fungi.

 

Flexibility

The best shoes provide just the right amount of flex and give to reduce shock on your feet while still supporting your feet. Unfortunately, some shoe protection sprays turn the upper of your shoe firm and rigid. This can result in cracks in the upper of the shoe and injury to your foot and ankle from the lack of flexibility in the shoe. Silicone-based shoe protection sprays are the worst for reducing flexibility and drying out the upper of the shoe that is being protected, so it may be a good idea to avoid them altogether if flexibility is a concern for you.

 

Toxicity

If you have pets, you don’t want to use a shoe protection spray that is toxic, especially if they are going to be around or near the shoes you are protecting while the spray dries or while the spray is being applied. Similarly, you do not want to use a shoe protection spray that is toxic inside your house without a lot of ventilation. It could make you and your pets ill. As securing your pets away from the shoes and spray and then opening all the windows in your house can be inconvenient, you should look for shoe protection sprays which are non-toxic.

 

Biodegradability

Biodegradability doesn’t affect the effectiveness of the shoe protection spray and it doesn’t confer any unique benefits on your shoes when the spray has been applied. However, biodegradable shoe protection sprays are environmentally-friendly and most shoe protection sprays are not environmentally friendly. You don’t necessarily have to choose between environmental-friendliness and effectiveness anymore, as technology has progressed to the point where shoe protection spray manufacturers can create effective and environmentally friendly sprays. You can spray biodegradable shoe protection sprays on your shoes with no guilt over your impact on the environment!

Ease of Use, Convenience, and Value

The value of an object or purchase is directly connected to its convenience and how easy it is to use the object. If the spray requires the user to take an hour or more to prepare the shoes and then treat them with the spray, then its effectiveness may never be experienced, because the user doesn’t have that kind of time to devote to caring for their shoes. There are many effective shoe protection sprays which offer high-quality protection against water, stains, or salt that are easy to use and don’t take a lot of time to prepare.

Some shoe sprays can dry out the upper of your shoes or turn them hard and unyielding. Others leave behind a residue which is sticky and hard to clean. Check the product reviews and test your shoe protection spray before application to confirm that it will neither dry out, harden, or leave a residue on your shoes.

Longevity and Time Between Applications

Another important aspect to consider is how often the spray needs to be reapplied to maintain effective protection. Some sprays need to be reapplied monthly and others need to be reapplied quarterly. You can easily find a long-lasting shoe protection spray that doesn’t sacrifice effectiveness, so keep this in mind as you are searching for the best shoe protection spray for you.

Affordability

Shoes are expensive. Most don’t cost less than twenty dollars, but many can cost upwards of one hundred dollars! Protecting that investment with a shoe protection spray can save you money in the long run, as it extends the lifespan of your shoes. However, those savings will be reduced if not negated if you invest in a shoe protection spray which has a high price tag and doesn’t come in a large bottle. Also, if the shoe protection spray requires multiple coatings before it will be effective, this makes maintaining the protection more expensive over time than buying a new pair of shoes!

It is more than possible to find an effective shoe protection spray which is affordable and fairly priced, so shop around for the best deals on the best shoe protection sprays that offer the benefits that you need for the shoes that you are going to protect.

Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Q: Will a shoe protection spray discolor my shoes?
A: A shoe protection spray might discolor your shoes. Always test the spray on a discreet area of your shoe before spraying the entire shoe with the spray. If testing the shoe protection spray discolors part of your shoes in a discreet area, naturally you should look into a different protection spray. Don’t risk ruining your shoes to save a few dollars!

Q: Are my shoes washing machine and dryer safe after using a shoe protection spray?
A: It depends on the type of shoe protection spray and the type of shoe that you are protecting. Generally speaking, it is not wise to toss any shoe that has leather or suede into the washing machine or dryer, but some very effective waterproofing sprays may make it possible to put them in the washing machine without damage. It is not recommended that you put your shoes in the dryer at all unless it is absolutely necessary and then you should tie them in pillowcases.

Q: How do I apply my shoe protection spray?
A: Application procedures vary somewhat from manufacturer to manufacturer, but most of them follow the same general guidelines. Here is what you need to do to apply most shoe protection sprays:

  • First and foremost, confirm that your shoe protection spray is safe for the material that you are applying it to! Using the wrong spray will ruin your shoes.  
  • Remove the shoelaces and, if necessary, wash them.
  • Wash the shoes using a method appropriate for the type of material used in the upper. If it’s fabric, you can submerge them in soapy water and scrub them. If it’s leather or suede, you will need a special cleaner to lather them up with a washcloth. Never submerge leather or suede shoes in a bucket or bowl of water! Foregoing this step may reduce the effectiveness of your shoe protection spray.
  • Generally, you will need to allow the shoes to dry before you treat them, but some shoe protection sprays can be applied while the shoes are still wet. The instructions and product information will help you determine if you need to let your shoes dry first or not.
  • Next, take your shoes outside or into a well-ventilated room and place them flat on the ground. If you are going to be doing this indoors, it is not a bad idea to place a sheet or some newspaper down on the floor to prevent possibly staining your floor.
  • Using slow, even strokes, spray the shoes with the protection spray of your choice from about six to eight inches away.
  • Allow the spray to dry on the shoes before applying a second layer if the instructions recommend more than one layer of spraying before using your shoes again. If they don’t require another layer of spraying before use, make sure you give the spray plenty of time to dry- some only require an hour or so- before you use them. If the spray isn’t dried, then it may wash off your shoes and eliminate any protection it may have afforded your shoes.
  • Reapply the shoelaces when they are dry and the spray has dried on the shoes. Now you’re ready to wear your newly protected shoes!

For the best results, always check the instructions on the bottle or package before trying to apply your shoe protection spray, as it may require different steps than the ones listed here.

Q: How often do I need to re-apply the spray?
A: Generally you only need to apply the shoe protection spray once every few months, but always confirm how regularly it needs to be reapplied by checking the manufacturer’s recommendations and instructions. Some shoe protection sprays need to be reapplied more often than others.

Q: Are shoe protection sprays environmentally-friendly?
A: Some shoe protection sprays are environmentally-friendly while others are not. To be certain, check the manufacturer’s information on the spray. If you want an environmentally-friendly spray to protect your shoes, look for sprays which are biodegradable or aerosol-free.

Q: Are shoe protection sprays toxic?
A: Some shoe protection sprays are. Always use your shoe protection spray outdoors or in a well-ventilated area to prevent potential discomfort and illness. This also reduces the likelihood of unpleasant odors stinking up your house for a few days.

Q: Is a waterproofing spray the same thing as a water-resistant spray?
A: No. Waterproofing means almost no water will get into your shoe. Water-resistance sprays will reduce the amount of water that gets into your shoes by repelling small amounts of water. Water-resistance is like rainproofing in that it protects the shoes from some water exposure, but not all.

Q: Is weatherproofing the same as waterproofing?
A: No. Weatherproofing is more like rainproofing, but sometimes sprays which are weatherproof also have stain preventive properties built in.

Q: Can I use my shoe protection spray on other surfaces?
A: Sometimes you can use your shoe protection spray on other surfaces. As long as the spray is safe to use on the material the surface is made of, you could use it on that surface. Some shoe protection sprays are also good for upholstery and wet-weather clothing while others are great for leather and suede surfaces, such as leather sofas and handbags.

Sources

Art of Manliness, Waterproofing Your Shoes – A Man’s Guide to Weather Resistant Footwear, March 3, 2010

Shoe Zone, How To Waterproof Boots & Shoes: Your Complete Guide, November 30, 2016

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