Even though my sister is a huge suede shoes fan, she has no idea how to clean them properly, which is why she usually buys a new pair every season. Read below the suede shoe cleaner kit comparison and review guide based on her and my experience.
Last month, she bought a pair of suede Skechers for me, and I love them dearly. The only difference is that I put a true religious fervor in cleaning them, and she does not. So, as I was cleaning my Sketchers this morning, I realized that it would be a nice gesture to find the best suede shoe cleaner kit for my sis and have it delivered to her house. The question then becomes:
What is the best suede shoe cleaner kit?
- Jason Mark Suede Kit and Repel Spray – is the complete kit for any type of shoe cleaning and, although a little expensive, is definitely the ultimate resource.
- Timberland Travel Kit – is a smaller, suede only kit, by one of the most reputable shoe companies out there.
- Pedag Suede Care Kit – is a cheaper, but complete alternative, but it does not have a waterproofer.
- Simple Shine Premium Kit – lacks any cleaning or proofing spray, but has high-quality brushes and erasers, and is more affordable than the rest.
- Shoeslulu Large Brush Cleaner – is a kit in a single, multifaceted brush and is the perfect travel companion.
What to look for in a suede shoe cleaner kit?
Suede shoe cleaner kits come in many forms and sizes and you may note that some of them will have cleaning and waterproofing sprays while others have just the brushes. If you read my article on how to clean suede shoes, you will note that the essential bits of kit are a wire brush, a soft brush, and a stain eraser. The sprays are just as important, but you can buy them separately or, as you will see in the same article, can be replaced with homemade alternatives.
Of all the suede shoe cleaner kits that I have provided a link to at the beginning of the post, I have owned 3 and read extensively about the other 2 so I feel that I can give an informed opinion about these products. Incidentally, I will give more detailed reviews of all suede shoe cleaner kits further down in the article so keep on scrolling.
In my experience, it is not the size of the brush that matters, but the quality of the bristles and of the stain eraser itself. The only difference between a large and a small suede cleaning brush is that you will need to clean the smaller brush more often. The Shueslulu was one of the first brushes I purchased, and I still carry it with me when I go on longer trips.
Before moving on to the reviews, I should add that I am not a fan of long winded reviews so if you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comments and I will go into further details.
1. Jason Mark Suede Kit and Repel Spray
As I mentioned before this is a complete shoe cleaning kit, so it is a little on the expensive side. I am very tempted to buy this for my sister because I am certain she does not have any brushes to clean her other textile or leather shoes, so this would be great for her. However, if you need just a suede shoe cleaner kit, you may want to look at the cheaper alternatives.
The other reason why the Jason Mark kit is so somewhat more expensive is because the brand name carries with it a lot of weight in the shoe cleaning community. The brushes have sturdy, comfortable wooden handles, the bristles on the brushes are sturdy, but the factory has taken care that each individual strain is rounded at the tip so as to not damage your shoes.
I was also impressed by the quality of the cleaner and the proofer sprays. Usually, with kits, you will either have great brushes or great sprays but no one producer can get both areas well. I think Jason Mark actually hit the nail on the hand with both classes of products.
Finally, the presentation of the products is nice, clean, minimalistic. This makes me think that this kit would be an excellent gift and will be easy for anyone to feature it in their shoe rack.
2. Timberland Travel Kit
My personal travel kit is the Shoeslulu brush, so I have not had the chance to try to the Timberland kit but, when comparing it to the Jason Mark, which I have used for several years, I would say it is one of the better traveling accessories out there.
Of course, you need to be a man with a particular set of skills or requirements, because, even for a travel kit, the Timberland takes a lot of space. So, you would need to be traveling a lot and to really be in love with suede to carry such a relatively big kit with you.
However, taking all of that into consideration, if you are a traveling salesman or anyone in the performing arts, you are going to have a lot of extra space regardless of what your traveling system is. If that is the case, then the Timberland Travel Kit is perfect for you.
The cleaning spray is accompanied by a proofing spray which will help you maintain the high-quality look and feel of the shoes. The brush is definitely comfortable, and the bristles have the Timberland stamp of approval.
The only concern I would have is with the cleaning technique that Timberland seems to suggest with this kit. They provide you only with a cleaning bar instead of a wire brush. As I have described in the suede shoe cleaning guide, a wire brush is the preferred tool for removing the bulk of the dirt before going in with the sprays, but I guess the cleaning bar is a lot less intrusive and will help maintain the color of the shoe for longer.
3. Pedag Suede shoe cleaner Care Kit
The Pedag suede care kit is one of the products I have personally tried, and I was very impressed by their cleaner block which works great as a stain remover.
The brush itself is small enough to work as an excellent travel accessory because it has all the bristles you need to clean and then to comb away when using a cleaning spray.
The only thing that is missing from this kit is a suede cleaner spray, but I can’t say I was too disappointed. I prefer using my own suede cleaning sprays, especially since I tend to use the cleaning sprays I use on the car’s seats.
On the other hand, the Pedag water proofing spray is of the best quality. I was once caught in the rain after I had just water proofed my shoes and, after letting them dry, they looked just like they did before I walked out of the house. These were a new pair of shoes, mind you, so I was really afraid that my carelessness had aged my shoes with about a year’s worth of moisture.
4. Simple Shine Premium Kit
Although I have never tried this kit before, this is the other option I am really considering as a gift for my sister. It does not have any cleaning sprays, so I will have to order those separately – and if you are curious about that make sure to check out my story on the best suede shoe cleaner – but that will allow me to get something that I really love.
The thing that really singles this kit for me is the fact that it has close to 70 customers who were happy enough with their purchase to come back to Amazon and leave a nice 5-star rating and review.
There were, of course, people who were not happy with the product, but they complained about the bristles falling out on the first attempt of using the product which tells me that they just received a faulty brush and that a simple replacement fixed the problem.
If the problem was a persistent one, you can be sure no one would be able to clean their shoes so they would have not come back to provide those positive reviews.
Finally, reviews aside, I really like using a real brush when cleaning suede. You need to put in quite a bit of effort and the smaller travel brushes are just not up to the task.
I have even ended up breaking the handle on a short brush in the past, so I think this would be a better alternative for someone who is just now starting to be preoccupied about cleaning their suede shoes properly.
5. Shoeslulu Large Brush Cleaner
Finally, we come to the brush I am currently packing away with me whenever I go on a trip. I used the word “large” in the title because that is what the manufacturer decided to call it, but, in my opinion, this is one of the smaller suede cleaning brushes.
In my experience, the handle tends to snap on this type of brush but, whether because I have more experience, or because the plastic is harder in the Shoeslulu brush, I have been able to keep and use this brush for the past 3 years.
Besides its sturdiness, the other thing I like about the Shoeslulu brush cleaner is the fact that the bristles are quite rigid so I can easily break apart and brush away any type of dirt and mud that may have gotten on my shoes.
Most hotels will usually accommodate me with a few teaspoons of white vinegar that I mix with water and spray on the shoes for a perfect finish.
As a standalone product I would not consider this for my sister, so I would not recommend it to be your main suede shoe cleaning brush. However, as a travel brush, considering just how much I travel and how anal I am about my suede shoes, I would think this is the perfect solution.
Conclusion on suede shoe cleaner kits
There isn’t much I can say by way of a conclusion to a list of suede shoe cleaner kits, so let me encourage you to buy the best products for your shoes instead. There is nothing more comfortable or classy than a nice pair of suede shoes, I think, and they really deserve the few minutes it takes to clean and to proof so that they will truly shine in all of their glory.
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