A special note……

Our footwear is built to last, and with your love and attention to the maintenance and care of the shoes they will last you even longer.

Buying good quality and investing just a little time will give you a valuable saving over time, help to appreciate the craft of shoemaking and preserve the finite resources of our planet.

Once you own a pair of Underground shoes you will soon appreciate the quality that is the result of the work and skill going into the manufacture of each pair. Your appreciation will soon extend to taking care and ownership of the product. A good pair of shoes will always be with you in good and tough times, so look after them and they will be with you on the road ahead.

Here are some simple shoe care tips to keep your shoes as your long-time sole mates…

General Shoe care

Look after your shoes. They have a tough time between your feet and the street, so they need some “me “time.

Clean them when you take them off before you put them in their storage space. That will remove any dirt before it can begin to harm the upper and give time for any preparation to absorb into the upper.

Store them upright on their soles to protect the uppers.

Store them in a dry place with ventilation and away from direct heat. Plastic storage boxes are not a good idea as they trap the moisture that will cause bacteria to grow in the shoes and break down the shoe material.

Keep your shoes stored away from direct sunlight as that will result in dry rot that will weaken the upper material.

Keep them away from dust as the dust will settle on your shoes and cause discolouration.

Use a shoe tree to keep the shoe in shape when you are not wearing them. Alternatively, you can use a natural cloth material to do the same or rolled up newspaper. If you use rolled up newspaper, then you will need to change that periodically as it will absorb the moisture in the air.

Storing your shoes in cotton shoe bags will reduce exposure to dust, moisture, and sunlight.

If you have not worn them for a while, then take them out and give them a wear to keep the upper and soles active and supple.

Protecting & Cleaning the Uppers


Despite its appearance, suede is hard wearing and resistant. If you want to keep the nap of the suede looking fresh and new then you can use a suede brush to gently tease the nap, removing dirt and particles and raising up the nap. If you want to give added protection you can apply a suede protector. You will need to do that when the product is box fresh before any particles of dust or dirt settle on the suede. We do not supply spray, but most shoe repair stores will be able to recommend and supply you with a useful product.

Most importantly if your suede shoes are wet or dirty then you need to wipe them down with a cloth and dry them out. Do not dry them on a direct heat source


For leather products you need to take the same level of care as is needed with Suede.

If leather shoes are wet or dirty, then you need to wipe them down with a cloth and dry them out. Do not dry them on a direct heat source. Using a cream or polish on leather is the same as using a moisturiser of skin care on your own skin. Leather breathes and using a cream will keeps it softer and younger!

Before you clean your shoes remove any dried in mud or dirt with a dry shoe brush or a damp cloth. You can clean your shoes with a good quality shoe cream or polish. Making sure the footwear is dry, you can then work the polish or cream into the leather with a shoe brush or a cloth. Make sure that the cream or polish is worked into the grain and let the shoes stand a while. Once the polish has had time to penetrate the leather then you can brush off the surplus with a polishing brush or cloth (but not the same one that you used to apply the polish). For a deep shine you are going to need to put effort in and keep polishing until you achieve the sheen that you want


Finding a substitute for leather that is ethical, aesthetic, environmentally friendly and that fulfils our technical requirements, has been our goal when offering a vegan friendly option. The microfibre that we use is resilient and resistant. It can be cleaned with warm water and a clean cloth, and a shoe cream can be applied to it for an extra finish.

Authentic Tartan

Our authentic tartan provides excellent wear but as a woven fabric we do suggest that you take a little extra care in those circumstances where the shoe is exposed to dirt and rain. The fabric can be cleaned with a fabric cleaner or hot soap and water. We would recommend that you protect the shoe upper with a fabric protector. You will need to apply that before wear to make sure that dirt and particles are not “trapped “by the spray

Patent leather

The patent leather that is used by Underground is a leather base with a coating. The coating provides the polished sheen finish. We do not recommend using a protective spray. The shoes should be cleaned with a damp cloth


Although referred to as “pony “most leather with the “hair on “is cowhide. This is the leather that we use at Underground. Due to the texture of the leather, we do not recommend applying any protective spray or cleaning creams. The leather can be wiped clean with a damp cloth.

Protecting & Cleaning the Soles

We recommend that you regularly clean the soles of your shoes. If you have dried mud on your soles, we recommend you gently tap the soles together to loosen the dried mud. Use a brush to remove any dust or dirt that, if left in place, may cause the thread and seams to weaken. You should remove and dirt or mud from the cleated soles on our Original Steel Cap collection. The commando style tread sole is designed to provide grip, but mud and grit will collect in the tread. Cleaning it out will preserve the life of the sole and maintain the grip that it is designed to give.

Taking care of Boot & Shoe Laces

Do not forget to look after the laces. Take them out of the boots or shoes, you can wash out the dirt, dry them out and give them a fresh start. When the footwear is lace less you can get in and give a good clean around the eyelets.

Cleaning the Metalware

Our footwear has plenty of metalware in the way of plates, buckles, studs, and trims. As most of them are attached to the shoe, cleaning them takes great care so that you do not damage the shoe upper. You can buy fabric safe metal cleaners in homeware and fabric stores. A homemade remedy is a mixture of salt, lemon juice and vinegar. You will need to take create care in cleaning the metal part by using a cloth or cotton wool buds.

Cleaning the Lining

The lining that we use is soft on the feet but also hard wearing. Give your shoes lining a good clean out from time to time. Dust and dirt in your shoe will wear away on the lining so minimise that with a regular clean out with a small soft brush.

Cleaning materials

A dry cloth – use a piece of clean cotton cloth. A cut up repurposed T shirt would be perfect

A shoe brus h- natural or synthetic bristle brushes can be used. We recommend one for applying the cream or polish and another to remove the surplus and, where required, to give some shine.

A suede brush – a multipurpose suede brush will have a stiff brush for removing dirt and a softer brush for loosening up the nap on the suede

Shoe polish – will help restore the colour and help you to give the shoes a good shine

Shoe cream – shoe cream will rejuvenate the leather and help to maintain the colour

Shoe protector- shoe protector can be sprayed on to the shoe before wear and protect the upper material

Summary of Do’s & Dont’s


Treat them with a protector before your first wear them

Clean them when you take them off
Store them carefully

Ask for advice about cleaning materials if you are not sure

Do not

Dry them in or on direct heat

Store them with dirt on the soles and uppers

Store them in the sunlight, where there is moisture or where there is dust

Clean with anything other than recommended products

9th November 2023
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