A pair of leather shoes can be an excellent investment. Not only do leather shoes look spiffy, but also the soft, breathable (not to mention natural) material is gentle on your feet. If you do decide to go the leather route, then you will want to clean and care for your leather shoes regularly.
Cleaning leather shoes does not require much in the way of fancy or expensive materials. All you need are two rags (one wet and one dry), water and gentle, moisturizing soap. (Saddle soap is popular when it comes to the care of leather goods. This mild soap contains softening ingredients such as lanolin, glycerin and neatsfoot oil as well as bee�s wax. It softens leather while it cleans it. Saddle soap can be purchased at most shoe stores, but any gentle, moisturizing soap will do. Dove soap, for example, works well.)
When cleaning leather shoes, it is important to ensure that the shoes do not become too wet. There is no need to drench your shoes. After wetting the cloth, be sure to wring it thoroughly. Work up a lather on the cloth using the soap, and then rub the damp, soapy cloth across the leather. Use the dry rag to wipe off any excess moisture or soap. Some people like to apply saddle soap directly to the shoes. The saddle soap can be rubbed on the outside and inside of leather shoes, but be sure to wipe off the excess soap. The saddle soap (thanks to its bees wax) acts as a kind of sealant and conditioner for the leather. You can also purchase leather shoe conditioners at most shoe stores. These conditioners should be applied after the shoes are clean and dry. Never dry leather shoes next to a radiator or fire. Excessive heat can warp the leather. Leather shoes should be dried off with a towel and left to air dry. If you need to speed up the drying process, stick newspaper or other absorbent paper inside the shoes to wick out the moisture.
Many people choose to apply colored shoe polish after cleaning their shoes. Again, the shoes should be clean and dry before applying the polish. Choose the color carefully and test it on a small section of the leather before brushing it across the body of the shoe. Polish can also act as a conditioner and protective sealant for leather shoes.