The first step in sustainability is taking good care of your current shoes. With the right shoe care you can maintain the material characteristics of your shoes and make them last longer. Leather in particular needs nutrients that keep it smooth and supple, but also textiles to keep their elasticity with the right care products. We hope this guide will help you get the most out of your VICO shoes.
There is much more to good shoe care than just regularly cleaning the shoes. Taking breaks from wearing them, correctly taking them on and off, as well as using a shoe tree, are all important steps when it comes to maintaining proper care, and, in doing so, ensuring that they last as long as possible.
Different materials require different special care. Nevertheless, there are general guidelines that apply to all materials. We would like to give these general guidelines to you first before we provide information about care for te different materials.
We advise that your new VICO's should initially be worn in for two or three hours at a time. When the shoes and feet have become accustomed to each other they can be worn day in, day out.
If your shoes get wet and how to dry
Open footwear fully, remove the insole and laces and allow them to dry naturally over 24 hours at room temperature, never use direct heat on the shoes. It is very important that wet shoes are not placed under or on a heater. Heat from a heater ensures that leather dries too quickly.
An impregnation spray makes the shoe water and dirt repellent, so they are protected against bad weather conditions such as rain, snow, water puddles, and other stains.
Always make sure that the shoes are dry and clean before they are treated with an impregnation spray. Spray the shoe with even motions, holding the spray about 30 centimetres from the shoe in order to ensure that all areas are thorougly protected and waterproofed, in a fairly well-ventilated space.
VICO recommends repeating this procedure once every two months to keep the shoes extra water and dirt repellent to extend the lifetime. It is important that the upper side of the shoe is fully and carefully impregnated to get the best results.
Shoe horns have been around almost as long as shoes have. It is designed to help individuals to slip their feet into their shoes without the risk of bending the heel of the shoe. This will help to protect the visual aesthetic and increase the lifetime of the shoe. At this moment we are developing a special VICO shoehorn.
Wearing and walking leaves traces such as dents and creases in the spots that bend. In order to stretch it back and ensure that the shoes take on their original shape, VICO recommends putting special shoe trees inside the shoes. Shoe trees are available in different materials. It is recommended to use cedar wooden shoe trees, which helps control odor and absorb moisture.
The best way to store your shoes is away from humidity, (sun)light and very hot or cold temperatures. Shoes remain in their best condition when stored in a shoe rack or dark closet.
The above are general VICO advice and tips for shoe care. The specific cleaning method depends on the type of material of the shoe.
The colour and finish of full grain leathers we use can basically be divided into two groups: vegetal tanned leathers and natural smooth leathers. The difference between vegetal tanned leather and natural smooth leather depends on the type of finish and tannage.
Vegetable tanning is a pure and natural way to process the hides without using harmful chemicals. It is a traditional, artisanal process that takes advantage of the tannic acids naturally found in some plants, by using the barks, branches, leaves or even some fruits in some specific techniques.
Natural smooth leather is versatile and one of the most frequently used types of leather, and is used for the production of high-quality leather shoes. Smooth leather is the generic term for any type of leather that can be produced from the smooth grain side of animal skins. Smooth leather is a natural product that is coated with an even finish and is thus particularly water-repellent by nature. Thanks to its, structure, liquids can only penetrate with difficulty.
Well maintained shoes do not just look good, they also offer the perfect comfort. Particularly fine smooth leathers need very regular basic care. The right care with special nourishment cream for fine smooth leather preserves both the elasticity and colour of shoes and leather accessories.
Vegetal Tanned Leather
Natural smooth leather
Conditioning and Polishing
Suede is a winner due to its velvety feel. The surface of this type of leather appears matt, warm and soft. Suede is made from the underside of the animal skin, which is soft and pliable. This material is made either by simply turning the leather upside down so the suede side faces up, or when the leather is split, and the top grain is taken away, leaving only the soft underside, which is now on both sides. On suede oil and waxed finishes can be applied.
Despite what some might think, suede is no more fragile than the regular leather from the same hide. Everything depends on the initial hide quality. Suede shoes are very easily cared for, provided you respect certain rules.
Many believe that suede will be damaged if wet. But do not worry your shoes will survive just fine. The essential part of restoring the appearance of your previously wet suede shoes is brushing them when they are dry. Pick up a suede brush made specifically for brushing and cleaning suede and gently brush over the entire surface of your shoes. Use circular motions to lift the suede and feels soft again rather than spotted and stiff.
In fact suede does not require much maintenance, treating your suede shoes with water proofing products and brushing them regularly with a suede brush to maintain the nap, the actual fibers that gives suede its character, will be enough.
Nubuck is a smooth leather sanded on the grain (top) side. The roughening with an abrasive gives the leather a velvety surface. The leather is thus soft and has a good breathability. To make the nubuck, the outer layer of the skin is used.
Shoes with a nap, such as suede and nubuck, can not be polished. Water- and weatherproofing are important for the preventive maintenance of this material.
Besides the many possibilities mentioned above to remove stains, VICO also has good advice for grease stains. Grease stains can be removed with talcum powder, because it absorbs fat, hence, making grease stains disappear from suede and nubuck shoes.
First, sprinkle talcum powder on the stain and let it dry. Once dry, the talcum powder can be shaken off, if necessary, the shoe can be brushed with a suede brush.
If your shoes are water or salt-stained, take a mixture of two parts water to one white vinegar, and apply to the affected areas, wiping until the stains disappear. You might need to use a brush to work the mixture into the fibers of suede, which is called nap. After it is dry, brush the suede back and forth to bring back the nap.
With an infinite variety of weaves, knits, colors, patterns, and special features, textiles have a special place in footwear design. Textiles are often used in the same way for making shoes and accessories as they are for making clothes, but while cleaning clothes is as easy as putting them in the washing machine and cleaning them with water, when it comes to footwear it is a different story. We recommend that you keep your shoes away from the washing machine.
With VICO we especially use woven textiles. There are many ways to "weave" the fibers together. In a woven pattern, two fibers cross each other. The fibers running the length of the fabric are called the "warp". The fibers running across the fabric side to side are called the "weft". The more typical "plain" square weave has an equal number of fibers in the warp and weft.
The "knit" is the other common way fibers are joined. In knitted fabrics, the thread follows a meandering path forming symmetric linked loops. These linked and meandering loops can be easily stretched in different directions.
We offer Collonil products to optimally protect and maintain your VICO shoes. Innovation through tradition, this is what Collonil offers through its expertise and instinct for revolutionary innovations. High-performance, high-quality products that revolutionise leather and shoe care. Always on the move and yet connected to its roots. To this day, Collonil has developed and produced everything in Berlin. Collonil has developed into a globally positioned company. Innovations for the whole world, made in Germany.
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