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Dos and Don'ts of Cleaning Your Vans Shoes

Dos and Don'ts of Cleaning Your Vans Shoes

You are just so sensitive about your Vans that you would rather make your girlfriend cool her heels than cross the street at the expense of wetting them. Very touchy, but where on earth does your sensitivity go when you just dump your Vans in the washing machine without knowing its material? In this HomeQuicks, know the dos and don'ts of cleaning your Vans shoes without ruining them.
Sai Kardile
Vans Checkerboard Casual Shoes
Popular and How!
Sean Penn's stoned surfer character Jeff Spicoli wore a pair of Vans checkerboard slip-ons in the movie Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1980). The shoes became such a phenomenon that Vans wound up in every department store of America.

Durable, comfortable (operative word), and resistant are words that follow Vans shoes à la fragrance that wafts from your Sauvignon Blanc. Yeah, one could say that. Paul Van Doren, the founder of Vans saw a dream, not just any dream, but the big American Dream. Paul Van Doren was meant to make shoes, and that's what he did all his life. Before forming Vans, Van Doren worked for a shoe company that made him the master of his trade. When Van Doren opened Vans in 1966, it was instantly lapped up by cheerleaders and students as Vans would make custom shoes that melded with costumes and uniforms. Then came the skateboarding scene in the 70s, where a pair of Vans became an important part of the skater ensemble along with the baggy jeans, outsize T shirt, and trucker cap. Today Vans essentially remains devoted to being a true south-Californian shoe brand that is ageless, versatile, and very comfortable.
Now that we know so much about this phenomenal culture-youth shoe brand, it would be sheer disrespect, if you can't clean your Vans shoes without ruining them. Alright, we won't give out a stinging, vitriolic tongue-lashing to you like your angry mama, but before we begin, there are some dos, y'all better follow.
✔ Before beginning with the elaborate washing process (which will depend on the material of your Vans), make sure you wipe the dust from the shoes using a soft-bristled brush, lint-free cloth, or a damp towel.
✔ You can wash your canvas Vans in the washing machine, but for that, it is recommended to keep the machine on gentle cycle. Also, go in for cold water setting and use old towels as bump protectors for your machine. Use only a mild detergent for cleaning, and do remember to remove the laces from your shoes.
✔ Always use dye-free bleach to clean your Vans shoes to avoid unsightly yellow stains that bleach is notorious for.
✔ Always hand-wash your suede Vans shoes.
✔ Shoe stores and drug stores abound in specialty suede shoe cleaners and other similar products engineered just to clean your suede wonders; make use of them.
✔ When in the mood to give a personal cleanup to your Vans shoes, follow the first step and dunk them in a bucket or sink of warm water. Pour some drops of mild detergent and clean it using a toothbrush. You are dazzling people already.
After the dos, let us now move to the important don'ts.
✖ Don't fling your Vans into the washing machine without understanding the material it is made up of. If you own a pair of suede Vans, then please control the aforementioned irresistible temptation. You will change the whole physiognomy of your suede Vans if you carelessly dump them in the washing machine.
✖ Don't use harsh chemicals or detergents to wash your Vans shoes irrespective of whether they are made of canvas or suede or any other material for that matter. You will deprive your kicks from their vitality if you treat them with harsh ingredients.
✖ Don't keep your colorful Vans to dry out in full sunlight. You don't want your prized Vans to look faded and strip it from its brilliance.
✖ Don't keep the nozzle of your blow dryer too close to your Vans, in case you want to give them a quick blast of hot air for an immediate wear. Also, make sure to stuff your Vans with tissues when blow drying, as you don't want the constitution of your Vans to get skewed or screwed. However, if you don't want to give an unpleasant olfactory experience to people around you, it is requested that you wait for your shoes to dry completely.
✖ Don't over-wash or wash your Vans too often. Just as over-bathing your baby won't transform it into a shiny bambino, washing your Vans every now and then won't turn them back into the bright-new-shiny ones just like you had bought them. So, a little prudence is required here.
✖ Do not use solvent cleaners to clean your Vans as they are likely to loosen the glue used to bond the sole.
One of the simplest tricks to purge your Vans shoes from unbearable mal-odor is by sprinkling it with baking soda, letting it sit for a day, and removing it with a brush the next day. You and your Vans will be all shipshape and shiny.