Can You Wash Suede Sperrys In The Washing Machine?



Can You Wash Suede Sperrys In The Washing Machine

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No, it is not recommended to wash suede Sperrys in the washing machine. Suede absorbs water, causing color loss and stiffness. Water can also spot stain suede shoes and damage the seams. Additionally, washing suede Sperrys in the machine can lead to rapid degradation of the shoe’s quality.

Suede Sperrys are the epitome of timeless nautical style, merging elegance with practicality. The luxurious texture of suede adds an element of sophistication to these beloved boat shoes. However, caring for suede Sperrys requires a keen understanding of their delicate nature. One common query that surfaces is whether machine washing is an acceptable method of cleaning.

In this article, we will explore the intricacies of washing suede Sperrys, offering insights into the dos and don’ts of suede shoe maintenance. From alternative cleaning techniques to safeguarding the integrity of your cherished Sperrys, this guide will provide you with all the information you need.

Dos and Don’ts of Wash Suede Tennis Shoes


  • Regular Brushing: Incorporate regular brushing using a soft-bristle suede brush to remove surface dirt and restore the suede’s velvety nap.
  • Preventive Measures: Apply a suede protector spray before wearing your Sperrys. This proactive step creates a barrier against liquids and stains, ensuring that your shoes retain their pristine appearance.
  • Mindful Storage: When not in use, store your suede Sperrys in a cool, dry environment away from direct sunlight. Prolonged sun exposure can cause fading and discoloration over time.
  • Rotate Your Shoes: Alternating between different pairs of suede Sperrys helps distribute wear evenly, extending the life of each pair.


  • Avoid Water Washing: The delicate nature of suede makes it susceptible to damage from water. Suede Sperrys can experience color loss and stiffness when exposed to moisture. Water can also leave spot stains and harm the seams of your shoes.
  • Say No to Harsh Chemicals: Refrain from using harsh cleaning agents or household chemicals on your suede Sperrys. These substances can damage the suede fibers irreparably.
  • Gentle Approach: Vigorous scrubbing can damage the suede’s nap and texture. Always opt for gentle cleaning methods to ensure the appealing appearance of your Sperrys.
  • Steer Clear of Heat: Direct heat sources such as radiators or hairdryers can cause suede to shrink, warp, or become brittle. Allow your shoes to air dry naturally to preserve their quality.

Best Way To Wash Suede Tennis Shoes

While machine washing is not recommended, there are effective alternatives to keep your suede Sperrys looking their best:

Step 1

Spot Cleaning: For minor stains or localized dirt, employ a suede eraser or white pencil eraser to gently rub the affected area. Follow up with a suede brush to restore the nap.

Step 2

Steam Refreshing: A handheld garment steamer can help revive the texture of your suede Sperrys. Keep the steamer a few inches away from the surface and use a suede brush to restore the nap.

Step 3

Professional Assistance: If stubborn stains or deep cleaning is necessary, seek the expertise of professionals experienced in cleaning suede items. They have the knowledge and tools required for thorough cleaning without causing harm.

Alternative Washing Methods For Suede Tennis Shoes

If water-based cleaning methods give you pause, consider these alternative techniques:

  1. Freezing Technique: Place your suede Sperrys in a resealable plastic bag and freeze them overnight. Freezing eliminates odor-causing bacteria. Gently brush off dirt or residue after freezing.
  2. Baking Soda Absorption: To absorb odors, sprinkle a small amount of baking soda inside your Sperrys and leave it overnight. Shake out the baking soda and use a suede brush to restore the nap.
  3. Cornstarch for Grease Stains: For grease stains, apply cornstarch to the affected area and let it sit for a few hours. Gently brush off the cornstarch and use a suede brush to restore the nap.


Can I use a slightly damp cloth to clean suede Sperrys?

Answer: Yes, a slightly damp cloth can be used for minor cleaning. Be cautious not to saturate the suede to avoid water damage.

Can I wear suede Sperrys in wet conditions?

Answer: It’s advisable to avoid wearing suede Sperrys in wet or rainy weather. If they do get wet, stuff them with newspaper and allow them to air dry.

How often should I clean my suede Sperrys?

Answer: Regular brushing and spot cleaning should be performed as needed. Consider deep cleaning or professional cleaning every few months based on wear frequency.

Is it safe to apply a protective spray after cleaning suede Sperrys?

Answer: Yes, applying a suede protector spray post-cleaning can help maintain the protective barrier and prevent stains.

Do suede cleaning kits work effectively?

Answer: Yes, suede cleaning kits often include specialized brushes, erasers, and solutions tailored for optimal suede care. They can be a valuable investment in preserving the quality of your suede Sperrys.

Final Words

In conclusion, while the idea of machine washing suede Sperrys may seem tempting, it’s essential to resist the urge. The unique qualities of suede, including its water absorption and vulnerability to damage, make machine washing a risky endeavor. Instead, embrace the gentle and effective cleaning methods discussed above to ensure your suede Sperrys remain a cherished part of your wardrobe.

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