How To Clean Sperrys

Sperrys are one of the most fashionable brands of boat shoes across the world, with leather, canvas, and suede products among some of their most popular. 

While all Sperrys require regular maintenance, each material whether it’s leather or suede, needs a specific cleaning routine. Therefore, if you want to keep your shoes in pristine condition for as long as possible, it’s important to clean Sperrys almost daily with the correct cleaning approach.  

In this guide, we’ll take a closer look at some of the most effective methods of cleaning Sperrys, including all the information you need to know about their leather, canvas, and suede shoes. We’ll also look to answer a couple of the frequently asked questions.  

How To Clean Leather Sperrys

The first method we’ll take an in-depth look at is the best way to clean a pair of leather Sperrys.

  • Firstly, you’ll need to remove any dust, dirt, or debris using either a soft toothbrush or a specially-designed bristle brush for leather.
  • The most effective technique of doing this is to brush the leather using soft strokes, all in the same direction. By contrast, if you try to scrub the shoes in multiple directions, there’s every chance that you’ll leave scars on your Sperrys.
  • Once you’ve removed the worst of the dust, dirt, and debris, you can apply some soap and water to remove any scuffs on the shoes.
  • The best cleaning solution to use is warm water and mild dish soap, and you can apply this using a microfiber cloth. Just be mindful not to get the leather too damp, as an excessive amount of water can reduce the suppleness of the leather fibres.
  • Following this, it’s imperative that you thoroughly dry your leather Sperrys with another microfiber cloth.
  • For added protection, you can also add some leather conditioner to your shoes prior to any polish you might use. Leave this conditioner to absorb into your Sperrys for around 15 to 20 minutes, before wiping clean.

How To Clean Canvas Sperrys 

When it comes to cleaning canvas Sperrys, the first thing to do is fill a bucket or wash basin with some warm water and mild laundry detergent. Make sure the detergent is fully dissolved before applying it onto your shoes.

  • Cleaning one shoe at a time, hold your Sperrys over the bucket or wash basin and scrub the surface using either a sponge or a soft toothbrush. This should be enough to remove the vast majority of the dirt, debris, and stains.
  • It’s worth noting that you should avoid fully submerging your canvas Sperrys into the cleaning solution as overly wet shoes are much more likely to mildew.
  • After you’ve finished cleaning your Sperrys, rinse them thoroughly with clean, warm water to make sure that no traces of soap remain anywhere on the shoe.
  • However, if there are some larger stains on the canvas that haven’t been removed through this process, it’s a good idea to put your shoes in the washing machine – set to a gentle cycle with cool water.
  • Following a full wash cycle, hang your canvas Sperrys out to dry in the sun, with the insoles removed. This helps them to dry quicker and prevents the insoles from moulding.
  • The final thing to keep in mind is to avoid putting your shoes in the dryer. While it might be tempting to dry them as quickly as possible, the high heat of dryers can cause your Sperrys to fall apart.

How To Clean Suede Sperrys 

The final method we’ll take a closer look at is the most effective way to clean suede Sperrys.

  • The soft grain of suede shoes is best cleaned with a suede brush, so use this to remove any dirt or dust that’s accumulated on the surface.
  • If there are particularly stubborn scuffs on your suede Sperrys, you can use either a suede bar or a pencil eraser to help remove them. All you need to do is apply a moderate amount of pressure to the affected area.
  • When it comes to water stains, dabbing a sponge across the surface of the shoe is the safest way to deal with the problem. Just make sure you fill your shoes with scrunched-up newspaper when they’re drying so that they retain their shape.
  • Finally, if you’re trying to remove oil stains from your suede Sperrys, you can sprinkle some cornstarch over the stain and let it sit for around 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Cornstarch is an effective remedy because it absorbs oil and can prevent it from soaking into the suede – especially if treated immediately.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Why Do Sperrys Stink? 

As is the case with any shoe that you wear on a regular basis, they can stink if you don’t take proper care of them. This is a common problem for Sperrys considering they’re a boat shoe that are worn mainly throughout the summer months.

Fortunately, as touched on above, there are several different methods of cleaning Sperrys effectively, including hand-washing and machine-washing. 

Can Vinegar Be Used To Remove Stains From Leather? 

Despite the fact that vinegar has many properties making it an effective cleaning agent, it has a tendency to dry out leather items such as shoes.

With this in mind, if you want to use it to remove stains, it’s recommended to mix it with some linseed oil as this can create a highly effective and safe leather cleaning and conditioning solution.