All ZX shoes are made with cow or kid (goat) leather. Here are the basic steps for caring for kid skin and cow leather shoes–do not follow these tips for patent leathers, suedes, nubucks or hair-on leathers.Cleaning
To get rid of any superficial dirt on the upper and soles, wipe the shoes down with a soft, lightly dampened cloth/old t-shirt or with a dry horsehair shoe brush with soft bristles. You can also use a spray bottle to lightly mist the shoes and wipe them down. This can be done as needed, but ideally after every wear. Never soak the shoes with water. We don’t recommend using cleaning products unless you’re trying to remove a heavy stain and water doesn’t work. If you do use a cleaning product, make sure it’s formulated for leather shoes and apply it to the whole shoe, not just the stain. Advanced tip: To remove black scuffs on nonblack shoes, try rubbing lightly with a good white eraser. But don’t rub too hard or else you could damage or discolor the leather.Conditioning
Leather needs to be moisturized just like the skin to prevent drying and eventual cracking. Apply a colorless shoe cream or leather conditioner with an old cotton t-shirt in circular motions and allow it to dry. Once dry, use a large shoe brush to vigorously buff it to a sheen. Repeat as needed or about once a month. Use a separate cloth to apply conditioner to the soles. Optional: To extend the life of the soles, have a cobbler apply a thin rubber pad to the balls for added protection.Polishing/waxing
It’s OK to just condition the leather, but if you want to take it to the next level to restore color, shine and cover flaws, colored waxes and polishes can also be applied–just make sure the color is a good match. Use a small round horsehair brush or cloth to apply the product to the whole shoe and work into the leather and allow it to dry for 15-20 minutes. Then buff to a shine with a large soft shoe brush. Apply another layer if desired and repeat. Advanced tip: Spraying the shoe with a bit of water after applying wax and buffing it will intensify the shine.Other Tips
Storage: Always store your leather shoes in a dustbag when not in rotation. We recommend stuffing them with tissue paper to help them keep their shape. Avoid storing them in very damp or hot environments.
Maintenance and Repair: If the soles are worn down, don’t throw the shoes away–the soles can be replaced! The same goes for rubber or plastic toplifts (heel caps). It doesn’t happen often, but if soles begin to separate or sock liners lift up, a cobbler can reglue or replace them. You can also contact us if you need replacement toplifts or buckles.
Rotation: To extend your leather shoes’ life it’s best not to wear your leather shoes two days in a row. Try to rotate between pairs evenly for best results!