Category Archives: Shoe Maintenance

How to Care for your Leather Work Boots

Article by Emily Bennett

A good pair of work boots can be hard to come by. Especially when they’re leather. Chances are, if you own a pair of leather work boots you do something pretty hard-core for a living, there’s also a good chance that your boots are just as tough as your job.

With all of the wear and tear that you put on them, your boots often pay the ultimate price for what they have to go through each day. Water, rocks, machinery, you name it, they’ve probably endured it.

While leather is as tough as nails, it’s also skin. This means that it can crack, stain, warp, etc. That’s why it is important to take care of your leather work boots and make sure that they get the maximum amount of wear and tear that they can handle. Here are a few tips and tricks to help keep your leather work boots up to snuff for work.

  • Knock off the Dirt and Grime: Rinse the mud and dirt off of them daily–if you allow them to build up with grime, they’ll start to rot….fast.
  • Give a Good Brushing: Just use a stiff brush to knock off any large clumps of dirt, grab a bowl and fill it with boot cleaner and water, and give your boots a firm scrub, removing any evidence of dirt.
  • Let ‘Em Air Out: Rinse the excess soap off with cool water, and leave them to dry in an open area (no, that doesn’t mean in your car!).
  • Water Guard: To finish up, apply a waterproofing cream, wax, or spray before you wear them again.
  • Oil ‘Em Up: Starting to notice that your boots are cracked and dry? Start using a leather conditioner every two weeks. This will restore them back to their natural texture (leather is skin, after all.)

As you can see, a lot goes into caring for your boots. Your efforts will help your leather work boots live a longer life and most importantly, help you get the maximum amount of wear from them. Ultimately, this leads you to fewer trips to the store for new boots.

Follow all the rules, and your boots will be around for years to come (you may just have to replace the sole). So go ahead and live a little in your safety toe boots. When you take care of your work boots, your work boots will continue to take care of you.

For more information on leather work boots and more, check us out on our website at


When Should You Replace Your Work Shoes?

So far you’ve been able to collect vital information from our blog on how to choose and clean your work shoes. But what happens when you’ve had your work shoes for years and they have lasted you countless shifts and they are slowly telling you that they’re ready for retirement?

Now, some people may go to the extremes of turning their work shoes into a D.I.Y. project and try and repair the shoes themselves. Is this a way to save money? Well sure, but will this improve your safety while on the job?

Absolutely not! It is a better idea to assess what you may need in your next work shoe and invest in a quality pair of shoes that will be able to do the job, while you’re on the job! Here are a few things that will let you know, without a doubt, that it’s time for a brand new pair of work shoes!

check your tiresCheck Your Tires

The tires of your car are one of the most important things to check on a regular basis. Why? Because they make sure our cars can get from place to place safely. The outsole of your work shoe functions the same way.

The outsole of your shoe assures that you can do your job quickly and effectively, without any accidents. If you see the outsole is worn down, then it may be time for a pair of new shoes.

Don’t Let Your Shoe “Talk”

talking shoes

The outsole of your shoe starts to separate from the upper, we refer to this as “talking”. Any sign of your shoes starting to separate is an apparent sign that it is time to invest in a new pair of work shoes. Not only can this look bad in your place of work, but it can also be very dangerous in a fast paced environment.

Do Your Soles Have Holes?  

Holey shoesUnder no circumstance shoe your shoe be “hole-y”! This is not only an unappealing issue, but it is also a safety issue. Depending on your work environment, small holes could quickly turn into big holes and leave you in a very unsafe situation. It’s important when you notice your shoe is worn in this way, that you work quickly to replace them.

You’ll Have to Replace Them Eventually 

There’s no hard and fast rule about the age of slip resistant shoes or how often you should buy new ones. Depending on your work environment, your shoes could last shorter or longer. Generally, slip resistant shoes will last between six and twelve months in the average work environment. Some may last longer, some not as long. Every pair of shoes has to be replaced eventually.

If you realize that you are running into these issues with your work shoes, then head over to the website and see what shoes may be best for your industry.

How To Clean Slip Resistant Shoes [Part 2: Outsole]

Article by Brinklee Bailey

If you missed the first part of this post about how to clean your slip resistant shoe upper, be sure to check it out, and then come back to read this post!

There are two parts to cleaning your slip resistant footwear. You must clean the upper and the outsole, in other words, the top and bottom of the shoe. For some, keeping your work shoes clean is second nature. But for those of you who may be new to wearing slip resistant safety shoes, here are a few great ways to ensure they stay clean!

SRM2400 Boot on Rock

Imagine the bottom of your shoe like a strip of “hook side” Velcro and the floor to be the “loop side” Velcro. When stuck together, there is maximum grip which means great slip resistance. Now imagine that dirt, flour, dust, mud or whatever debris is a sheet of paper between those two pieces of Velcro. Not nearly so effective now, is it? This, in a very basic sense, is why you have to keep your shoes clean to maintain slip resistance!

So what tactics can you take to clean and maintain the outsole of your slip resistant boot or shoe?

Cleaning a Shoe Outsole

Cleaning Shoe Outsole

The first thing that your workplace can do is have a boot and shoe brush in a prominent location. This might be in a kitchen or grocery department, near a loading dock or someplace else within your business. In places where there is less slip resistance but more traffic.

Also consider placing a grip mat or a coir mat for employees to regularly wipe their shoes off. These simple additions to the work place will make a world of difference in cleaning your slip resistant work shoes.

If your workplace cannot make this option a reality, consider purchasing a personal stiff bristled shoe brush to keep in a locker or near your workstation. Use this whenever you notice debris building up on your outsole as well as for regular maintenance.

Maintaining a Shoe Outsole

SRM4500 Side and Outsole

Supposing that you’ve been able to keep your shoes clean, there is still one more thing you can do to prolong the life of your slip resistant shoe: DO NOT WEAR THEM OUTSIDE OF WORK!!

Yes, your new Skechers Work shoes look awesome, but if you wear them to shoot hoops with friends or take Fluffy for a run around the park you will destroy the very valuable slip-resistant outsole. Why? Again, an explanation of slip resistant technology is in order.

SR Max Shoe Breakdown

A slip resistant outsole is softer than a standard shoe outsole. This softer nature allows the microscopic roughness to grip onto normally slippery conditions. However, it also means that the shoe is less durable and less able to withstand the rigors of concrete, asphalt, cement, rocks, uneven surfaces, etc. So if you really want your slip resistant shoes to last, only wear them while at work!

We hope you found this blog helpful for the next cleaning of your slip resistant work shoes! Check our website to see what new styles we have!

How to Clean Slip Resistant Shoes [Part 1: Upper]

We occasionally get the question, “How do I clean my slip resistant work shoes?” After a recent discussion on Twitter, we decided to break this topic down here on Get a Grip!

To properly maintain your slip resistant shoes, there are two things you must consider: cleaning the upper and cleaning the outsole. A shoe’s “upper” is everything above the sole that covers the sides and top of the foot. This is the majority of the visible part of the shoe. A shoe’s “outsole” is the bottom part of the shoe that touches the floor. This is what makes the shoe slip resistant.

Today’s post will focus on cleaning and caring for a shoe upper. Continue reading