While golf is certainly not the dirtiest of sports you could get involved in, if you do love to play a regular round and enjoy heading out come rain or shine, walking those fairways and greens rather than hitching a ride on a buggy, chances are you’ll get your golf shoes a little muddy or sandy. Rain is an occupational hazard of the pro and amateur golfer, pretty much wherever in the world your favorite course is located.
Golfing umbrellas are as synonymous with the game itself as clubs and balls are. They’ve got to be up there are as one of the most popular sporting accessories even for the non-golfers among you.
But enough about rain and umbrellas – what we’re trying to say is that chances are, those pristine white golf shoes of yours might succumb to the inevitable scuffs and stains, dirt and marks, especially if you’ve invested in a pair of leather or synthetic leather shoes. So today we’re looking at how to you clean white golf shoes.
Your Essential White Golf Shoe Cleaning Kit
There’s certainly something very reassuring about slipping into a pair of perfectly white golf shoes but keeping them looking immaculate, especially if you’re a regular to the fairways, requires some commitment and upkeep.
No doubt the specialist sporting goods store where you purchased your golf shoes will have done a good job of trying to upsell you to a specialty cleaner, one specifically designed to take care of the common stains suffered by golf shoes, namely grass stains, mud, and sand. These are a great option, especially if your course doesn’t have one of those motorized shoe cleaners. What a great little invention they are! Perfect if you want to head straight off the fairway and into the clubhouse for a well-deserved post-match beverage.
While motorized cleaners have their place and are certainly quick and efficient for some essential on-the-spot cleaning, there is nothing better than carefully cleaning by hand, especially if you want to retain that gleaming white new shoe appeal for as long as possible.
The things you’ll need to clean your golf shoes manually
In no particular order, we recommend that you stock up on the following essentials to ensure that your favorite white golf shoes stay that color and don’t end up a dirty shade of grey.
- Shoe cleaning cloths
- Daubers or cloths to be used with whiteners
- Heavy duty shoe cleaner
- Water-resistant white leather shoe dye or whitener
- Polishing cloths
- A soft bristled buffing brush or dusting cloth
How to clean white golf shoes
Before you get started, you’re going to need to remove any loose and dry dirt or debris first so take that dry shoe brush or cloth and remove as much of the obviously visible dirt as you can. Be careful not to transfer dirt from the soles of your shoe onto the upper white section when you start cleaning your golf shoes, so first spend some time making sure that you’ve already removed as much dirt as possible.
When you’re ready to start cleaning your uppers, grab that shoe cleaner and your cloth and liberally apply the cleaner to all the affected areas, working it in thoroughly and using as many cloths as necessary until you’ve removed all the dirt.
Make sure you change your cloths if they get dirty; that way you’ll avoid spreading more dirt over the parts of the shoe that you’ve already cleaned. It’s much easier to tackle this in sections so that you can be sure you don’t overlook any areas and end up concentrating more cleaning effort on one place than another. Make sure that you follow any specific instructions that come with your chosen shoe cleaner rather than just winging it.
Using a shoe whitener to bring your golf shoes back to their original glory
Once you’ve given your shoes a good old clean, if there are still some engrained stains that you just can’t remove, it’s time to apply some white leather shoe dye or daub on some whitener where you have localized and persistent grass stains and scuffs.
Work the dye or the whitener into the affected area in circular motions using a new, soft, clean cloth. By applying in a circular motion, you’re working the pigment into the shoes more effectively, and you’re also ensuring a more even and natural looking coverage too. Once you’ve applied enough whitener, buff your golf shoes lightly with a soft dry cloth as this will work any of the remaining dye into the leather and create a better finished result.
Your white shoes should now be looking shiny and new
It’s best to leave them for about 12 to 24 hours to allow them to naturally air dry before you are tempted to wear them again. We know that you’re probably anxious to get back out onto the green and show off those pristine white, clean golf shoes of yours, but a little bit of patience is needed, especially if the humidity is high – just to be sure that the whitener has absorbed into your shoes.
It’s also important to note that if you are going to be wearing those shoes in wet weather conditions, you should ensure that any dye or whitener that you’re using is water resistant. If you do have a decent pair of leather shoes, we also recommend that you invest in a leather shoe conditioner; that way, you can keep your investment looking and performing great for years to come. If only it were as easy to improve your swing as it is to keep your shoes clean!