SSIA Press Release

Following is text you can use as a press release for your business. Simply copy and paste it into an e-mail and send it to your local media. If you like, you can personalize the release by changing some of the generic terminology (local shoe care professional, etc.) to your name or your shop's name. When you contact the media, feel free to use SSIA as a resource they can contact for more information. The can contact or 630-866-8164 with any questions.

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Winterize Your Shoes and Boots

Winter is almost upon us which means rain, snow, sleet and slush are about to begin their assault on your shoes. Fortunately, your local shoe repair shop offers several solutions to keep your footwear looking fabulous.

Prepare Before the Storm

The best way to make sure your footwear stands up to the winter weather is to prepare before the storms come. In fact, it doesn't hurt to apply a water and stain repellent as soon as your shoes come out of the box. Just wipe the shoes with a cloth to remove any dust or debris and apply one of the several excellent fluoropolymer aerosol or pump sprays available from your local shoe repair shop.

The products are quick-drying and often ready to go in minutes. But experts recommend letting the treated shoes sit overnight for the product to completely cure. Also, make sure to use the product in an adequately-ventilated area.

You will need to reapply the weatherproofer periodically. Experts recommend reapplying twice a year (prior to winter and summer). But, if you notice the water is not beading up on your shoes any longer, you may need to reapply sooner depending on the amount of wear and severity of conditions.
If your shoes have been worn, clean them with a mild cleaner and polish them. Your shoe care expert can recommend products that will work for you.
Shoe polish provides a level of protection for the leather, but you will need a water and stain repellent to stand up to Mother Nature's winter fury.

Not Your Father's Weatherproofer

When choosing a water and stain repellent, shoe repair professionals point to new fluoropolymer technology and new products that have come on the market in recent years. These products are easy to apply, odor-free, do not attract dust and dirt and do not change the color of the shoe. They are also safe for suede and brushed leather.
Traditional products such as mink oil, silicones or neatsfoot oil also work well for specific applications. Make sure the product you choose is right for you. That's where your shoe care professional comes in.

What Happens If I'm Too Late?

If you venture out in unprotected shoes and return with wet, salt-stained uppers, fear not. Your shoe care expert can help you restore those shoes as well.
The first thing to do if your shoes get wet is to remove excess moisture from the outside of the shoe using a dry rag or towel. To pull the moisture from the inside of the shoe, put paper towels inside the shoe to draw the moisture out. Replace them every hour or two until the shoe is dry. Do not use heat to dry your shoes as this can damage the leather.

If you end up with salt stains on your shoes, you can get a salt stain remover from your local shoe repair shop. Simply rub on the stain remover, let dry and repeat the process until the stain disappears.

After drying wet shoes or using the salt stain remover, use a conditioner on your shoes to restore the leather. Then apply your water and stain repellent.
And if you find you can't get water or salt stains out of your shoes, bring them to your shoe repair shop for a professional cleaning.

Not Just for Shoes

The water and stain repellents available from your shoe repair shop are not just for shoes. In addition to protecting your footwear, they can protect other leather items such as jackets and handbags. They work on suede and cloth of all types. You can use them to protect your car interior and your furniture. Just make sure you have adequate ventilation in the area where you will be using the product.