There are different paths to take in our journey towards sustainability: there are people that prefer buying from vintage and second-hand stores, while others prefer to buy products that are new and made by eco-friendly brands, for example. Nevertheless, it doesn’t matter which path you take if you don’t take the proper care of your sneakers.
The equation is simple: if you take care of them, you make sure they last longer, and so you don’t have the need to buy new ones. That’s why we’ve come up with a few pieces of advice in order to help you achieve this.
1. To avoid dirt and stains keep your sneakers in their boxes
The first and most simple step to care for your shoes is to store them in boxes. This is a great way to prevent them from getting dusty and stained: you avoid having to wash them so often, which not only is a waste of natural resources, but it’s also a practice that could damage the material in the long term.
There is no need to spend money and resources on new storage, you can use the box that came with the shoes when you bought them. Some sneakers also come with a dust bag, but in case you don’t own one, here’s the sustainable way to replace it: you can repurpose an old pillowcase, or DIY the bag with fabric leftovers or recycled clothes.
2. You shouldn’t wear the same pair everyday
We all have one pair of sneakers that we love to wear everyday, but that’s a habit we should try to change. Because of the regular use, the inside cushioning can deteriorate and flatten out and it takes time for it to go back into place. In addition, the sneakers soak up all the daily sweat, which can ultimately degrade the lining as well.
Therefore we advise you to rotate your shoes day-to-day and let them dry overnight in the open space before wearing them again. This will prevent the cushioning from detonating and absorbing unwanted odors too.
3. Use newspaper to maintain the sneaker’s shape
Either if they are a day-to-day choice or you just wear them occasionally, you want to maintain your shoes’ natural shape to prevent them from wrinkling. If you already own one, you can opt for storing them with a wooden shoe tree that will prevent them from cracking. Nevertheless if you don’t have one, you can just use newspapers too. Both options will absorb moisture as well.
4. If your sneakers got damage, take them with a professional
There is no need to throw away a perfectly functioning sneaker just because it has a hole or the sole is getting softer. This kind of damage can be taken care of and mend by a professional, which will make them look like they were brand new.
5. Learn how to properly wash your sneakers
You can wash your shoes by hand, using eco-friendly cleaners made specially for sneakers. You can help yourself with a cloth (or you can also reuse a piece of clothing you don’t wear anymore) and an old toothbrush. There is no need to buy new items. Try to be gentle and careful when hand-washing your sneakers and in case of doubt you can always contact the brand to ask for additional advice on how you should wash them.
We know these are a lot of advice and it probably seems like a difficult task to put them in action all at one. But the important thing is that you take the first step. Embrace these tips and give them a try next time you have the chance. We’ve all started somewhere! And remember, you can apply those to all your footwear, not only sneakers.
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