How to clean my sneakers and keep them fresh?

Have you bought a pair of sneakers that could use a cleaning? Or do you want to be sure that you can enjoy your sneakers for as long as possible? We have some useful tips then! By taking good care of your sneakers, they last longer and retain their value. We tell you exactly which products you need and which steps you need to take to keep your sneakers clean.

How to clean my sneakers?


Step 1: Protect

Are your sneakers still in mint condition? Protect your sneakers before wearing them (!!). Seriously, this is the most important step of all. Protecting your sneakers with Carbon Lab Protecting Spray ensures that rain, dirt and other sneaker enemies cannot ruin your beloved kicks. We use the “3 x 30 rule” for this. Spray your sneakers at a distance of 30 cm, let them dry for 30 minutes and repeat this every 30 days. The spray leaves a flexible, breathable membrane that prevents moisture and dirt from entering the material. Dirt no longer adheres to your sneakers. You can’t prevent the protective layer slowly but surely thins. By regularly spraying your sneakers you prevent them from getting dirty later on. Our Protecting Spray is suitable for all materials. You can safely treat your entire sneaker collection.

A clean midsole together with clean laces are the main ingredients for a clean looking sneaker. Therefore, you need extra protection for your midsoles. You occasionally bump into a curb, you have to deal with splashing mud that pulls into your soles and your midsoles slowly but surely become discolored by UV radiation. We have a special solution for this: Carbon Lab Midsole Sealer. This is the solution from Collonil to protect your midsoles. Due to the protective layer, dirt cannot adhere to your midsole, moisture does not absorb into the material and you immediately have a “sunscreen” against UV radiation. There is also a 30 rule for your midsoles: you have to reseal your sneakers’ midsoles every 30 days!


Step 2: Clean

Have your midsoles got dirty? No worries, we have the perfect solution for you. A quick and easy solution. First, look for the cleanest dry cloth you have. Good stuff is half the battle. That is why we recommend a microfiber cloth. If your mother does not have these, use our specially developed premium Carbon Lab Microfiber cloth. Then apply Carbon Lab Midsole Cleaner to the cloth. Sweet, ready to go! We help you remember how clean your midsoles were when you bought your sneakers. Brush in circular and you will immediately see the dirt dissolving in the structure of the midsole. When you think it really can’t get any better, use the microfibre cloth to wipe the sole clean.

Can the upper of your sneakers also use a thorough cleaning? Perfect. We have different ways to clean your sneakers and will help you with all the love. Before we get into that: First remove the laces from your sneakers and wipe the coarse dirt off your pair with our microfiber cloth. Put the laces in a bowl of water together with our Cleaning Solution and let them soak. Done? Good, then we can continue.

Dry cleaning
First of all, we try to remove stains without liquids. You are probably used to cleaning your sneakers by using lots of soap and water. You may also have the experience that this is not good for materials such as nubuck and suede. The material becomes ugly and may discolor. That’s why we always recommend starting with dry cleaning, so that you have to have to get your sneakers wet as little as possible. Use the Carbon Lab Nubuck Suede Cleaner and the Carbon Lab Spot Cleaner to wipe superficial mess from your sneakers. With both blocks you ensure that you can wipe away stains very accurately.

The Nubuck Suede Cleaner works perfectly for superficial stains and rougher surfaces. The block has a special crep layer, where dirt sticks to it. The Spot Cleaner is intended for the artful stains. This block has been developed in such a way that it removes the mess between the fibers. Because the block renews itself as it slowly crumbles. You will be amazed at how easily your mess can be removed without getting the sneakers wet.


Wet cleaning
After we have treated the sneakers with the blocks, you can continue cleaning with our foam or liquid solutions. We are personally a big fan of our foam solution: Carbon Lab Cleaning Foam. This will hardly get your sneakers wet, but you can directly clean your entire sneaker in once. It works easily: you shake the can, hold it vertically upside down and spray a little foam on the Carbon Lab Cleaning Brush. Then clean your sneakers by brushing in circular movements. Don’t be afraid to use a little bit of force here. The foam dissolves the dirt and by using a brush you can be sure that you are cleaning deep into the fabric. Use the microfiber cloth to wipe your sneaker. Grab a beer or a cup of coffee; after 10 minutes of drying (and re-using the protecting spray), your sneakers are ready to be worn again!

Do you prefer to use a liquid cleaner? Then we have an excellent solution with Carbon Lab Cleaning Solution. Apply the liquid to a brush or microfiber cloth and brush away the dirt in circular movements. If you use a microfiber cloth to brush, be careful. By pressing too hard you can damage or discolour the material. We therefore always recommend to use the brush for brushing and the microfibre cloth to take off the sneaker after brushing.

Some tips:

  • Would you like to roughen the material of your sneakers after cleaning? This is easy with the Spot Cleaner or Nubuck Suede Cleaner. You do this when your sneakers are dry again.
  • To get your laces clean, soak them in a bowl of water with Cleaning Solution for a few hours. After rinsing them out and drying them, put them back in your sneakers.
  • Don’t forget to treat your sneakers directly with the Protecting Spray! This prevents you from brushing again next week.
  • Make it yourself easy: all you need for cleaning is available as kits.


Step 3: Neutralize

Don’t worry, we all suffer from it. Worked a long day, had a tough workout or just a hot summer day. Exactly, sweaty feet! With smelly sneakers as a result. Did you know that you can easily solve this? By spraying our Carbon Lab Odor Cleaner for 5 seconds, bad odors are removed like snow in the sun. This also applies to sneakers that smell of filthy smoke or pets. This cleaner has been specially developed for sneakers and is not just a perfume. It kills the bacteria that are the source of bad smells. You can also abuse the spray for your cap, gym bag or jacket, for example.


Step 4: Care

In addition to protecting and cleaning your sneakers, you also need to take good care of your sneakers. This maintenance is required to maximize the life of your sneakers. How? Easy! Give your sneakers the love they deserve with Carbon Lab Sneaker Care. This product nourishes the materials, prevents the leather or fabric from drying out and ensures that colors are retrieved. You use it by spraying from a distance of 20 cm and then distributing it with our microfiber cloth. Let it dry and enjoy your fresh sneakers.


Collonil Carbon Lab

We are a big fan of Collonil Carbon Lab. And the reason is simple. QUALITY. No hype, no sales tricks, simply the best affordable tools available. Collonil is a brand that goes back a long time. Before you and I were even born. The brand started in 1909. Today Collonil has grown into an international brand of high-quality shoe care. Collonil sells at almost every neat shoe store. All that was missing was the focus on sneakers. And of course the accompanying sneaker maintenance products. This changed in 2017, with the arrival of Solebox founder Hikmet Sugoer. An entirely new and innovative way to care for your sneakers was born! With over 100 years of experience, research and development in the field of shoe care, you can be sure that you need Collonil Carbon Lab.


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