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Dirty Manolos? Learn How to Clean Satin Shoes & White Satin Shoes at Home

Dirty Manolos? Learn How to Clean Satin Shoes & White Satin Shoes at Home

Silk and satin are some of the most delicate materials out there. And in shoe form, where the accumulation of grime and dirt are imminent, it’s no surprise that many people are looking to learn how to clean satin shoes. Probably more than there are needing to learn how how to clean suede shoes!

The most common satin shoe types where cleaning is needed include white satin wedding shoes such as pumps, sandals, booties and satin bridesmaid shoes.

These shoes, after a day of celebration, will have accumulated more than their fair share of stains, including those from wine spillage and/or pesky grass stains from outdoor venues.

Then there are satin shoes used for ballroom dancing or ballerina’s pointe shoes. These, after multiple wears, will see layers of dust and filth from dance floors or theatre stages collect onto them. This, especially if the shoes are not being maintained between wears.  

Thankfully you can clean satin shoes at home, and it's important to clean them gently using mild solutions. Because of that, it might take some time and a few tries to make them look new again. But don't be discouraged! All you need is a bit of patience!

Read on – here at – to learn how to clean all types of satin shoes, including colored adn white satin shoes.

Read this Before you Clean Satin Shoes

Before you start to clean your satin shoes, there are 3 things not to forget! These are worth mentioning before you begin, to prevent you from damaging your lovely shoes.  

1. Do a Spot Test

Always start with a spot test on a less visible or invisible area. The shoe interior, the internal shoe wall close to the bottom, or any low portion of the heel is an advisable place to test out first.

2. Dry Carefully

After cleaning the satin shoes, let the shoes dry in a cool dark place. Airdrying is best, but there are other methods you can attempt. Check out my post on how to dry shoes fast to learn more.

3. Clean Dry Satin Shoes Only

Many cleaning experts advise not to attempt to wash out any wet stains on satin shoes. So it's important to let the shoes air dry first.

This will prevent any dirt or stain to spread further, which can happen if you attempt to clean satin shoes while the stain is still fresh. Think wet grass or wine stains, or sidewalk dirt that has splashed on your shoes on a rainy day.

How to Clean Satin Shoes

Text reading how to clean sating shoes 6 cleaning tips over cropped tilted view of woman putting on white satin shoes.

Lightly Hand Wash your Satin Shoes

Washing your satin shoes by hand is one of the best ways to them clean without worrying about causing damage to your footwear. 

Before learning how to clean satin shoes, you need to have these items on hand: a soft brush, liquid soap, water, a towel and a small bowl.

If you’re using this cleaning method, be sure to follow the simple steps below to get your satin shoes to look as good as quickly as overnight!  

How to Hand Wash Satin Shoes – 4 Steps

  1. Use your brush to gently rub it against all sides of the shoes. The purpose of using the brush is to remove any potential debris that may come off your shoes with ease, such as dirt and dust.
  2. Next, you’ll need your gentle liquid soap. I would recommend using something as mild and effective as castile soap. Add two tablespoons of the cleaning solution into a bowl with 1-2 teaspoons of water into the bowl, mixing well before starting.
  3. Once you’ve mixed your cleaning solution, dip your towel into it and begin to rub it gently against your satin shoes. Take your time and make soft movements to avoid causing damage to your shoes.
  4. Continue cleaning with a towel until you’ve removed stains. Grab a separate towel, dip it in warm water, and squeeze it out prior to rubbing it on the satin shoes, removing any excess soap.
  5. Place your shoes in a cool, dry place and leave them there for several hours, giving them plenty of time to air dry. You can speed up the drying process by using a fan. More info in my post on how to dry shoes.

How to Clean Tough Stains Like Grass off Satin Shoes

It’s not surprising that grass stains are some of the most common stains that plague dress shoes. I mean, satin shoes are a top choice shoe material for weddings, bridesmaids' outfits. And since outdoor weddings are popular – well – you do the math!

These greenish-yellow grass pigments are particularly difficult stains to remove from shoes, especially from light colored satin shoes. Below are some methods you can try at home to remove them or other tough stains like dirt, and wine.

As with all shoe cleaning hacks, always try out your desired method on a hidden or less visible part of the shoe before attempting it on a clearly visible portion!

1. Try OxiClean

OxiClean is a powerful product that simplifies the cleaning process. I’ve used it on many clothing and accessory stains and this stuff is like magic! If you’re wondering how to clean satin shoes at home using this product, it’s super simple. 

  1. Take 1 tablespoon of OxiClean powder and combine it with about a teaspoon or two of water to make a paste. 
  2. Dip a clean towel into the paste, rub it against your satin shoes, and use gentle circular motions to remove unwanted stains and dirt from your footwear. 
  3. Once you’ve gently scrubbed the stains out of your shoes, you can wipe them down with a separate wet towel. 
  4. Leave them to dry for a few hours before wearing them.

2. Try Baking Soda

If you don’t have OxiClean, you can use baking soda as an alternative for cleaning your satin shoes. You’ll need a brush, two towels, baking soda, and water. 

  1. Combine the baking soda with water to create a paste
  2. Using a towel, apply the paste to your satin shoes, gently rubbing them on all sides to remove the dirt & stains.
  3. Use a separate towel to wipe away the baking soda residue with a bit of water and then allow your shoes to dry.

3. Use Vodka

Wondering how to clean satin shoes with vodka? It’s yet another option to consider when you’re in a pinch and want your satin shoes to look as good as new. 

Vodka tends to work best as a spot treatment. Be sure to only use pure vodka. None of that flavored or colored stuff! Learn how to use vodka to remove stains by following the steps, below:

  1. Combine one part vodka with three parts water in a spray bottle.
  2. Spray the surface of the shoes, allowing the mixture to soak in for at least 10 minutes 
  3. Afterward, begin gently rubbing the stains on the satin shoes using a soft microfiber cloth. Any stains on your satin shoes should come out with ease.
  4. Allow the satin shoes to dry.

4. Vinegar may help

Don’t hesitate to give vinegar a try. If you combine vinegar with a pinch of baking soda and equal parts water, you’ll have the perfect concoction to use on your shoes. 

Apply the vinegar solution to all sides of the shoes, and gently rub it in. Let it sit for a few minutes before wiping it away with a clean, damp towel. Don’t forget to let your shoes air dry in a cool, dark place.

How to Clean White Satin Shoes

If you’re dealing with white satin shoes that you want to clean, using a mild detergent with water and a toothbrush will do the trick. 

You will need water, a clean soft-bristled toothbrush, a small bowl, and a mild detergent. Some to consider are Woolite, delicate washing liquid from The Laundress, Heritage Park’s Silk & Wool detergent.

Follow the step-by-step process to clean white satin shoes, so that you can get your light satin shoes to look their absolute best!

  1. Mix 1 part mild detergent with 2 parts cold water in a bowl. You can add less detergent if the stains aren’t particularly difficult.
  2. After testing the solution on a small area, dip the toothbrush into the detergent and water solution slightly. Remove any excess solution, so as to not stain your shoes further with too much water.
  3. With gentle strokes, brush softly at the stain. Repeat the steps as necessary, washing off the toothbrush with any dirt it may have picked up.
  4. After your stain has been removed, use a clean, dry, white towel to soak up any dampness. 
  5. Allow your shoes to dry in a cool, dark place before wearing them again. 

How to Keep Satin Shoes Clean – 5 Tips

Want to avoid having to clean grass, dirt, wine or any other stain from satin shoes? There are many ways to prevent satin shoes from getting soiled or accumulating non-salvageable stains.

1. Waterproof Shoe Spray

Save yourself the hassle of dealing with dirty shoes by purchasing a waterproof shoe spray designed to repel liquids and dirt. While it won’t last forever, you can spray it on your shoes to keep them protected. 

These sprays will allow the material to fend off dirt, stains, and marks from developing. It’s one of the most effective ways to keep shoes in the best condition. 

Learn all about how to use waterproof shoe spray and which are the best waterproof sprays for shoes on the market, in my dedicated post. 

2. Hairspray

Hairspray is an alternative for when you don’t have any waterproof footwear spray on hand. Hairspray will also act as a barrier to prevent dirt and stains from forming on the satin shoes and is yet another great option to consider.

If you have some hairspray at home, spray from 1 foot away to a quick coating to all sides of your shoes to achieve the best results. Let the shoes air dry in a cool, dry place.

3. Regular Cleaning

Keep your satin shoes in excellent condition by giving them a quick cleaning after each use to prevent dirt buildup. Make sure to dust away any dirt or debris after each use with a soft brush or microfibre brush.

If you’re doing a speedy clean, it can save you from going through a lengthy deep cleaning process. Maintenance is key!

4. Store Satin Shoes Properly

How to store satin shoes, you ask? I’d definitely recommend placing them in a dust bag and keeping them on a shoe rack inside your closet. 

There are various kinds of bags available, from simple black velvet shoe bags to even peek-a-boo shoe bags with a transparent window that allow you to see what's inside.

This is the best way to keep them protected and prevent them from getting dirty. If you don’t have a dust or shoe bag, you can buy several sizes and styles at Walmart

That being said, most delicate satin shoes will come with one or two convenient dust bags, so please use them rather than tossing them aside!

5. Avoid Wearing Satin Shoes in Certain Conditions

Of course, avoiding wearing your satin shoes in certain places or weather conditions is key to keeping them clean. This includes avoiding grass, dirty sidewalks, and not wearing satin shoes when it’s raining. 

If this isn’t possible (hello, wedding venues!) do try the listed methods listed on how to clean satin shoes, above. Are you nervous about grass stains on your heel end?

There are lots of high heel protectors for grass, including heel caps and attachable bases that not only keep your heels from sinking into grass, but they can also help prevent dirt and grass stains. All about those, in this post.

FAQs about Cleaning Satin Shoes

How to clean Badgley Mischka + Manolo Blahnik Satin Shoes?

If you want to clean Badgley Mischka or Manolo Blahnik satin shoes, with or without a sparkly buckle, the best way is to do so using a clean damp cloth. 

Take the rag, soak it in a bit of warm water, and then squeeze it out to remove excess water before applying it to the shoes. The dirt should easily wipe off with a damp rag. 

Alternatively, you can also follow any of the methods listed above in this post, making sure to protect the jeweled buckled, which may rust. You can use saran wrap to avoid getting any corrosive liquid on the metal.

How to clean satin ballroom and pointe shoes?

When cleaning your satin ballroom or pointe shoes, always take the handwashing approach, as they can get very dirty due to frequent use.  

Use a mild detergent combined with water and a cloth to wipe away dirt and debris before giving your shoes time to dry. Be sure to maintain them by giving them a quick clean each time you use them for practice or performance.

Final Words on How to Clean Satin Shoes

Of course, the ideal way to keep your satin shoes clean is to never wear them – haha just kidding!

Satin shoes are some of the prettiest albeit delicate shoes you can own. I know I avoided buying any light-colored pairs until I found out how to care for them & keep them looking new.

Hopefully, this post on how to clean satin shoes has eased your mind about purchasing satin shoes. And that now you feel more confident about cleaning satin shoes you already own – your wedding shoes maybe? – you're ready to get everything lined up to make your silky satin shoes as good as new!

Disclaimer: The methods listed in this post on how to clean satin shoes at home should be used with caution. ShoeTease and its partners are not liable for any damages to persons or property arising from any of the advice given in this post. Follow the advice at your own risk. For best results, have your silk and satin shoes cleaned by a professional.

xo ShoeTease

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