Before you toss out that favorite pair of pumps or trendy boots that you love because they need some minor repair, and before you take them to a shoe repair shop and pay someone else to work on them, consider if you might make a few simple repairs on your own. This can save you time and money and save you from having to replace your shoes and boots and buy something new.


First note what needs to be repaired. A common problem with high-heeled shoes is the small “nub” at the end of the heel falling off. This exposes a nail which can get caught on carpeting and which also makes it painful and dangerous to walk in the shoes. It can also be very unsightly! This small piece is easily found at any shoe repair shop and you can tap it into place over the exposed nail with a hammer. Be very gentle when you do this.

For small cracks in the sole of the shoe, there is a product called “Shoe Goo” which works as a type of sealant for shoes. You simply squirt a small bit into place and it dries evenly, repairing the cracks and worn areas. This will keep your shoes from leaking and cracks from getting bigger. You can find Shoe Goo at most shoe stores or shoe repair shops.

When you get cracks and abrasions on the upper part of shoes, these too can be fixed with the right products. Leather wax can be applied to real leather shoes and this will fill in tiny cracks and keep it soft and supple. For real leather and manmade leather-like products, you can also use car wax! Add some wax and then buff it off to fill in those cracks and keep your shoes shiny and new.

A dry cleaning bar, which is typically sold with a brush, will clean suede and make it look like new if there are cracks or areas that are worn. The dry cleaning bar resembles a large eraser and is very simple to use. It will fill in cracked areas of suede shoes and also remove dirt, oil, and grease.

For winter boots that leak, first treat them with a small amount of leather or suede conditioning. Then, spray water repellant along the top of the boots. Use a type of repellant made for boots in particular. Add another coat of repellant to the inside of the boot. This will seal the boots and keep out water.

For severe cracks, holes, and other major repairs, you may want to bring them to a professional. He or she will have the right tools needed to replace heels, fill in large holes in the soles of the shoes, and make other repairs that are beyond your area of expertise. This will save your shoes and keep them looking like new.

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