How To Clean Oil Stained Suede

Several years ago I bought these cute Sam Edelman Booties. Guys, I have gotten so much wear from them! They are comfortable and the putty color goes well with so many things. I've also been pleased with how well they have held up.

Abby and I recently discovered that we now wear the same shoe size. On the first day of school she planned to wear my booties. Unfortunately when she put them on we saw a large brown oil stain on the upper portion of the right shoe. I'm not sure where the oil stain came from but am suspecting a dirty rag may have been thrown on them in the laundry room. Abby decided to wear the booties with the stain on the first day but I was determined to figure out a way to clean them. They're my favorite, afterall.

Because suede is napped leather, it is more porous than most materials and soaks in stains easily. Especially stains that have been left untreated for a long period of time. Since I wasn't sure how long the oil stain had been on the suede I kept my expectations low. After a little googling I came across a simple cleaning method using basic household corn starch. I generously covered the stain with cornstarch and let it sit for 30 minutes.

I have to say, I was pretty pleased with the results. The corn starch removed most of the oil and the dark brown spot. The outline of the stain is still slightly visible but is very hard to see when they're on my feet.

I'm so happy I was able to salvage my fave little booties and hope this tip can help one of you dears too. Oh! I wanted to also tell you that this is the best little brush for keeping your suede in good shape. I've been using it all summer on my suede Birkenstocks and they still look brand new.


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