How to clean dance shoes

How to Clean Ballet Shoes - Spotlight Vermont Blog

Ballet shoes can be the hardest dance shoes to clean when they are dirty or stained. The typically light pink shows wear and dirty spots very quickly. Because ballet slippers and pointe shoes are delicate, have fabric that can’t be washed, or water will compromise the integrity of the shoe, follow the below steps to clean your shoes.

  • Leather Ballet Slippers

    • Many times simply wiping the ballet slipper with a damp cloth can help take some of the easier dust and dirt off. But, if your studio has tap dance in the same space as ballet, you’re bound to have some tap dust on your ballet shoes in no time. A drop of mild detergent on the shoes and then wiped off with a dry towel of cloth or toothbrush may help. You could also try leather cleaner however, make sure you have a leather conditioner to keep the shoe supple.

    • DO NOT clean leather ballet slippers in the washing machine. If they are beyond a simple spot cleaning, you may hand wash leather ballet slippers but be sure to wear them while they are damp so that they continue to hold the shape of your foot.

    • NOTE: Water can make leather brittle so be sure to wash them rarely.

  • Canvas Ballet Slippers

    • Canvas ballet slippers can be washed in the machine in a gentle cycle in a wash bag with a gentle detergent. Washing canvas shoes like this will be removed much of the dirt and grime however, don’t expect the color to be restored well. If you’re washing before a performance, a matching color of foundation makeup can be helpful in masking the faded color.

  • Pointe Shoes

    • It’s rare to thoroughly clean a pointe shoes because you should never get your pointe shoes wet. Water is a pointe shoe’s kryptonite. Also, because of the generally short lifespan of a pointe shoe, cleaning is not necessary. Using pointe shoe covers can keep your shoes cleaner for longer and can be found at many dance shops or online. Most dancers choose to hide stains on their pointe shoes by using a concealer or calamine lotion. 

    • If you do have a few stains that need to be scrubbed off, there is one pretty good way to help. Mix baking soda with water to form a paste, using a toothbrush, rub the baking soda into the stained spot on the pointe shoe and let dry overnight. This is not a solution for an entire shoe as the moisture from the paste may change the composition and fit of the shoe. The next day take a damp (not wet) cloth to clean away the baking soda paste. Please know that this will dull the satin but should help clean some of the stains.

Rebecca BryngaComment


Best Way To Clean Dance Shoes

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Dance shoes get dirty really quickly with practice and recitals, especially since dance floors are never the cleanest surface. The dust and floor wax dance shoes collect are terrible for the fabric and unfortunately most dance shoes cannot be thrown in the washer or dryer. Of course dance shoes are a vital to your performance and you need to take good care of them.

You should get into the habit of cleaning your shoes after every performance. If you don’t have time to clean them properly, just use a slightly damp paper towel to wipe off the grind. A lot of dancers use this as a quick fix. Then use a separate hand towel to dab the shoes dry. Try to remove as much moisture as possible with the towel. Do not rub the fabric vigorously as this can leave streaks.

A good way of extending the life of your shoes is if you put them into a small shoe bag inside of your dance bag so they don’t get damaged. If you just drop them into your dance bag then they will likely get scuffed up against other items, for example your lunch, hairbrush or other objects. Bagging your shoes also conveniently serves the dual purpose of protecting your other things from the dust from your shoes.

Depending on how often you dance, your shoes should be cleaned on average once a week.

Suede Soles

Dance shoes with suede soles are more delicate than your average sneaker or walking shoe and therefore require much more care if you want them to last. Your dance shoe should be brushed with a suede brush. Use short strokes to get the dirt and grind out of the suede. You can also use a touch of Vitamin E or Custer oil and rub it into the bottom of the shoe.

Leather Shoes

Shoes with a harder leather or rubber sole can be cleaned with a damp paper towel. It’s also best if you add a little sanitizer or Windex for the more difficult spots. Shoes with leather uppers, like a tap shoe or ballroom shoe, can be cleaned with a leather cleaner or shoe cleaner. The salt in your sweat can dry out the leather over time. You can buy leather cleaner at any shoe repair shop or superstore. If you can’t find the right colour you can also try a clear shoe protector or order the correct colour off the internet.


The sole will wear down in time and will be needed to be replaced eventually. Find a good shop to repair your shoe because this will save you money in the long run and extend the life of your shoes. However, if your sole is coming apart and has a large hole then they will eventually have to be replaced.

Second Pair

You might want to invest in a backup pair in case your primary shoes need to be thrown away. This is especially important if you dance more than three times a week. That way you don’t have to skip a rehearsal because you don’t have any shoes. The other advantage is that if you alternate between shoes, it gives your shoes a chance to breath between uses. You also want to take care of your feet and if you have pressure from the same points from the same shoe then it can put undo strain on your feet. We hope we have given you some good ideas on how to take care of your shoes. If you have any questions or you need to buy new dance shoes visit us at

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How to care for ballroom dancing shoes?

1. Dry your shoes after class or competition. Proper drying of shoes after a workout is a very important part of taking care of dance shoes to keep them in good condition. Take your shoes out of the bag as soon as you get home.

Wet shoes dry only at room temperature, and it is advisable to insert a stretcher into it or stuff it tightly with newspaper, napkins or crumpled paper (which must be changed periodically). Ballroom dance shoes can only be cleaned with special shoe care products, today such products are sold in almost any store.

Do not dry ballroom dance shoes near a radiator or any other source of heat! From this, the material may crack or even sit down!

If the shoes do shrink, use a shoe stretcher.

2. It is not recommended to “wash” shoes.

3. For transportation, manufacturers put special bags in boxes with shoes, there are special bags for shoes, you should not wear ballroom dancing shoes in plastic bags, shoes do not “breathe” in these bags.

The care of ballroom dance shoes depends on the materials used to make the shoes.

Satin ballroom shoes can be cleaned at home with a special shoe cleaner available from almost any dance store. It is necessary to strictly adhere to the instructions, and then your shoes will keep a presentable look longer. You can not rub such shoes with a brush or try to wash them with plain water - this will lead to thinning of the fibers of the fabric, and to the formation of ugly spools. You need to pay attention to the seams and fasteners. Places where the fabric can fray can be lubricated with natural oil.

4. Recently, it has become popular again to dye shoes in the color of a suit - this can be done both in the salon and on your own, choosing the right tone.

5. Many people stick rhinestones on their ballroom dance shoes, for this you need to use the same glue that is used to decorate the competition dress. For the period of gluing and drying, it is recommended to insert a special spacer into the shoes and fill them with paper. It is not recommended to wear shoes glued with rhinestones or decorated with laces for training, because. from frequent rubbing of shoes against each other, the stones will be slightly erased and lose their original luster.

6. Genuine leather shoes are easy to care for. You can clean it with a damp cloth or sponge. There are specialized tools, but since. they are created primarily for street shoes, sometimes it is worth treating ballroom dance shoes with natural ones, for example, beeswax. To give shoes made of genuine leather shine, you can use a special polish sold in ordinary shoe stores.

7. Keeping track of men's suede and nubuck ballroom shoes is a little trickier. Do not use water to clean these shoes, water will promote the formation of new stains! Suede and nubuck are dry cleaned. Before the main cleaning, it is necessary to treat the shoes with a special brush with rubber. But you can also use the "grandmother's" method - an eraser and toothpowder! In order for shoes made of nubuck and suede to last longer, you need to stock up on special care products for such shoes and special impregnation.

8. Lacquered ballroom dance shoes should be handled with care, even the smallest scratch will be visible on the lacquered surface! It is not necessary to clean new patent leather shoes - just wipe them with a flannel cloth. At the moment when the need arises for cleaning, it is best to use a soft sponge and soapy water, or use special products: shoe oils and balms. To remove stains, you can use nail polish remover without acetone.

Never use a brush to care for patent leather shoes! You can get rid of dull spots that sometimes appear on patent leather shoes by rubbing these spots with a cut onion or egg white. Patent shoes should not be kept near sources of heat and moisture. Otherwise, it may even become moldy! If suddenly your shoes are covered with mold, then carefully remove it and grease the surface with glycerin. Leave the glycerin on for 10 minutes, then remove it with a cloth.

Partners often complain that at the beginning of wearing patent leather shoes cling to each other and lose their presentable appearance. To solve this problem, there is a special tool that can be bought at the time of purchase of new shoes.

9. A very important part of ballroom dance shoe care is sole care. The sole is made of specially dressed leather, suede and has small villi. Your stability depends on the state of the sole - sliding on the parquet. Optimum adhesion to parquet is 70% dependent on the condition of your soles, the remaining 30% depends on the quality of the parquet.

The soles of ballroom dance shoes should be cleaned with a special brush before each practice session or any time on the floor, and once or twice during practice. For easier cleaning of the brush itself, it is recommended to put an old nylon stocking on it before use, which is removed after cleaning. The brush will be like new.

Almost all dancers wet the soles of their shoes with water, but this causes them to deteriorate rather quickly. If you have ever used this method, you will have to resort to it constantly. It is better to use castor oil for the same purposes.

Some dancers spray their soles with hairspray, this may work for a short time but after the hairspray dries it gets worse. After that, it is almost impossible to clean the sole from the varnish.

10. There is a universal cleaner that is well known to motorists - this is the WD-40 fluid displacer. This tool will help clean the paraffin sole, from fat and disinfect it. But often you should not use this tool either, because. completely fat-free skin is also bad. Recently, a special powder has appeared on sale to help achieve the necessary slip on the parquet.

11. Change of heel heels - concerns mainly partners. It is better to purchase a spare pair of heels at the time of buying new shoes. Heels should be changed, not allowing them to wear out too much. Changing heels is a very simple action that anyone who has used a hammer at least once in their life can do. In order to replace the old heel, you need to fix it with pliers and pull it out. Then insert a new one so that the metal pin that is on the heel goes deep into the heel in the right direction, then drive the heel inside with a hammer.

First of all, it is necessary to take care not of shoes, but of your own skin of legs and feet. It is necessary to take care of the feet, and recently appeared, special orthopedic insoles, invented specifically for ballroom dancing, will help to keep the shape of the feet as long as possible. A special powder, also designed specifically for dancers, will kill bacteria that spread infection and odors and help prevent excessive perspiration.

Insole care0048

Most insoles are made of artificial materials, but there are also insoles made of real leather, for example, Dance naturals (DN) uses only natural leather. It cannot be unequivocally said that one is better than the other. Artificial materials are easier to care for (which many ignore), genuine leather is, of course, comfort, but caring for it requires a special approach. And it is highly recommended to use a powder that kills bacteria. If the insole is not taken care of, it will get wet from aggressive sweat, become a breeding ground for bacteria, and, ultimately, this can lead to the loss of the internal shape of the shoe. It is very important that there is a certain adhesion between the soles of the feet and the insoles (not the sticking of a dirty and wet insole to the foot, but the adhesion).

Some manufacturers of ballroom dance shoes use a cushioning system - a special spring mechanism. There are several important points that tell us how the shoe manufacturers thought about dancers:

Shoe shape

If ballroom dancing shoes don't support the arch of the foot, these shoes are not suitable for dancers.

If the shape of the last leads to flat feet (which almost all manufacturers have!), then the rest of the care for the feet goes into second place.

Sole - see item no. 9

Note 1: Heel pads are a separate issue. Recently, different types of headbands have been used in terms of material, shape (different shape of the neck of the headband, different base), in addition, the use of different colors, effects (for example, with deodorant, with the addition of phosphorus, etc. ) . All this is a separate topic for discussion.

Note 2: Today, various anti-slip powders such as anti-handle and anti-slip of German production are on sale. Discussion of the use of these powders is also a separate topic.

How long one pair of ballroom dancing shoes can be used

Many factors affect this, first of all, the duration of training, the shape of the foot, proper shoe care ... All this is very individual. And, of course, it depends on how many couples you have and how often you practice. For example, couples sponsored by English firms are given an average of five to six pairs of shoes per year for each athlete. The lifespan of shoes for intensive training and competitions ranges from 2-3 months on average. From a hygiene point of view, it is also recommended to change shoes every 3 months. With proper operation and good care, this figure can be increased up to one year. Well, from experience, the right approach, for example, to men's ballroom dancing shoes (the right choice of manufacturer, the right choice of model and size, and, of course, the right shoe care) allows shoes to serve for several years. Women's shoes serve, of course, less. But with the right approach to choosing ballroom dance shoes and with proper care for them, they can last several seasons.

The durability of ballroom dancing shoes, besides their care, is also affected by other factors: high-quality and accurate lasts, the raw materials from which the shoes are made, professional assembly on high-precision equipment, and many other points.

It is not recommended to buy ballroom dance shoes for children "for growth", this leads to rapid wear.

An additional note on the durability of ballroom shoes - shoes with stitched soles will last longer.

Dance shoes are guaranteed for 30 days. To avoid unpleasant situations, it is worth taking a spare pair with you to tournaments. Yes, just in case.


How to clean ballroom shoes | Encyclopedia of shoes

Denis Skoryatin 0 Comments ballroom, soap solution, natural leather, natural materials, unpleasant smell, first of all, clean, do, washing machine, warm water

How to properly handle ballroom dancing shoes is selected, and you have already worked out in it, took part in competitions - you should think about caring for it. It doesn't matter if you buy dance shoes every month or two, or wear them for years, the simplest hygiene operations simply need to be done with them.

▪ After training or competition ballroom dancing shoes should be allowed to dry. Drying shoes every day is a necessary step in the care of your shoes to keep them in the right shape and condition. You need to get shoes out of the bag-case, immediately upon returning home.

Raw shoes are dried not in heat or cold, but at 18-24 degrees Celsius, while it is advisable to use a special stretch in the middle in the form of a shoe last or stuff it tightly with paper, preferably soft, which needs to be changed from time to time.

Ballroom dance shoes must not be dried near any external heat source (radiator, dryer, gas stove)! From this, the material may crack, warp, lose its original shape!

If your shoes are too small or too small and rub, use a shoe stretcher or put on warm socks soaked in alcohol or vodka and walk around in them for half an hour or an hour.

▪ It is best not to “wash” shoes in the washing machine.

What is more important for you when choosing shoes?


▪ To transport shoes, manufacturers or stores sell shoes with special bags, there are also specialized bags for shoes. The main thing is that you can’t use plastic bags to carry shoes, because shoes don’t “breathe” in them, but “wrinkle”.

Care depends on the upper materials used in the manufacture of

Satin or satin ballroom dance shoes can be cleaned with special cleaning products, which can probably be purchased at every store. It is forbidden to scrub dirt from such shoes with a brush or try to rinse with ordinary clean water - as a result, there will be a thinning of the fabric fibers, streaks and the formation of ugly spools. It is necessary to pay attention to buckles and straps, in these places there is a high probability of tearing and chafing. Therefore, tighten the tails along the course, you do not need to tighten in the opposite direction, so you can easily break the strongest straps. You can smear these places with natural vegetable colorless oil, and be sure to change them to new ones when they are rushed - the newly sewn ones become very rough, thick and very often rub the leg

▪ In recent years, it has become popular to dye shoes to match the color of the suit. But it is better to immediately order shoes of the color you need, now this service has become more widely used, and manufacturers have a lot of new materials and colors.

▪ Many people glue stones to their ballroom shoes using the same glue you used to glue jewelry to a dress or latin. It is contraindicated to wear shoes with rhinestones or shoes decorated with laces for training, because the stones will slightly rub off from the frequent friction of the shoes against each other, stop shining or even fly off.

▪ It's quite easy to list genuine leather in shoes - we do this all the time with our outdoor shoes, so the principles and methods don't change. You can clean it from dirt with a wet sponge or a piece of cloth. It is better to apply natural products based on beeswax to ballroom dancing shoes.

▪ A more complicated procedure is to track men's ballroom shoes in nubuck or natural suede . To clean these shoes, you can not take water, it will contribute to the appearance of new stains! These materials are cleaned only when dried. Before the main cleaning, you need to work with shoes with a brush with rubber inserts for suede leather (as they are called). But you can also use the folk way - with a wash (eraser) and toothpowder!

▪ Care must be taken when caring for patent ballroom shoes , as any (even the smallest) scratch on the varnish surface will be noticeable and may continue to grow over time! Only purchased shoes with a patent leather top can only be wiped with a flannel cloth. But when it becomes necessary to clean them, it is more advisable to use a soft sponge or cloth with soapy water. You can also use specialized products based on balms and natural oils.

▪ A very important element of shoe maintenance is the sole care. It is made of specially selected leather - suede and has a fleecy structure. The condition of the sole directly affects your stability and at the same time the correct glide on parquet or laminate. The condition of the soles gives 70% of the influence on the grip of shoes with the floor, while the quality of the parquet only affects the remaining 30%.

It is necessary to rub and clean the soles of the shoes with a special brush with a hard metal bristle before each exit to the floor or training in order to again roughen the polished leather. To keep the brush itself neat, you can put on an old stocking before use. But most brushes are now varnished and everything superfluous is easily chipped from them.

Almost always, dancers moisten the soles of their shoes with water before dancing, but this is only a short-term remedy, and rather harmful to the shoes themselves. It is better to use a special tool for the same purpose - anti-slip, but not castor oil - shoes deteriorate from it and are very poorly repaired.

There are dancers who apply hairspray on the soles, this method can give a short-term effect, but after the varnish dries, it becomes even worse. After that, it is almost impossible to clean the sole from the varnish.

▪ There is a universal recipe for sole cleaning that is well known to riders - water displacer WD-40. This method will undoubtedly help to clean the sole from paraffin, fat and disinfect it. However, often the use of this tool is generally useless, because absolutely fat-free skin is also not the best option. Some time ago, a special powder came into the market, which helps to achieve the required slip in the parquet, but it is quite expensive and does not always give the desired result. In general, try, experiment and you will have a non-slip parquet.

▪ Change heel heels or - concerns mainly partners.
It is more correct to buy a spare pair of heels at once during the purchase of new shoes. Heels need to be replaced, in no way allowing them to completely wear out. Changing heels is a fairly elementary task that can be handled by anyone with proper arms growth, not just legs. In order to replace the old heel, you need to fix it with pliers and pull it out. Then insert a new one, so that the metal pin that is on the heel goes deep into the heel in the right direction, and then drive the heel inside with a hammer. But it is better to contact a shoe repairman, without experience you can ruin everything.

Insole care. Most insoles are made of artificial materials or a combination of artificial and natural materials, but there are also insoles made of real leather, for example, Galex uses only natural leather. As the experience of training shows, it is definitely impossible to choose what is better, each species needs to be looked after in its own way. Artificial materials can be less frequently and less labor-intensively looked after, but by no means should be ignored, but for natural leather, due to increased comfort, more frequent and demanding care has to be sacrificed.

And it is highly recommended to use a germ-killing powder. If you do not worry about the condition of the insole, the microbial environment will grow, become a breeding ground for germs, and, ultimately, this can cause the shoe to lose its internal shape and cause a very unpleasant smell. It is very important that there is some adhesion between the sole of the foot and the insoles (no sticking of the black and wet insole to the foot).

Shoe shape. If the ballroom dance shoes do not support the arch of the foot, these shoes are not suitable for dancers. A suitable shape and shoe last can only be selected by measuring it. Also pay attention to the shape of the sock in women's Latin - square or oval. The first is suitable for feet with the longest thumb, and the second with a longer index or middle.

How to clean ballroom shoes

Shoe shape (read more...)

First of all, you need to take care not of shoes, but of your own skin of the legs and feet. It is necessary to take care of the feet, and recently appeared, special orthopedic insoles, invented specifically for ballroom dancing, will help to keep the shape of the feet as long as possible. A special powder, also invented specifically for dancers, will kill bacteria that spread infection and bad odors, and help prevent excessive sweating..

How to take care of ballroom dance shoes
4. Lately it has become popular again to dye shoes in the color of the costume - this can be done both in the salon and on your own, choosing the right tone. How to clean ball shoes

Wash your feet (read more...)

Leather shoes should be washed quickly and in cool water so that the temperature does not affect the adhesive joints. But synthetic ones can be soaked in a soapy solution for an hour or even run in a washing machine in a delicate mode with warm water.

How to take care of your climbing shoes: Evolv's advice
Climbing shoes don't need much maintenance, so don't be lazy and skip the simple tips in this article. Yes, yes, at first you think “Oh, yes, it will do!”, And then you catch sidelong glances at the climbing wall in the direction of your very bad-smelling climbing shoes 🙂 But this can be avoided, or at least reduce the scale of the disaster. Key points: keep climbing shoes away from heat sources, do not use harsh chemicals and store in a dry place. And then in order. How to clean ballroom shoes

Oriental dance (read more...)

Oriental dance or belly dance is mostly performed without shoes. But you can also use Czech shoes or ballet flats, as in ballet dances. Such shoes can be decorated with embroidery, beads, rhinestones or other decorative items.

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In addition, dance shoes usually have an additional insole to absorb moisture, and this will provide you with more comfort. While some ordinary shoes can be comfortable and stylish, they can easily lead to injury.

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