Rain boots are made to endure the harshest of weather conditions, so cleaning them would be a walk in the park. Wrong! Despite its durability in certain climates, rain boots don’t automatically look clean after every use. At times, they can also be more difficult to wash than ordinary footwear. Kids rain boots, in particular, can frequently be very hard to clean as little ones play in muddy puddles and dirty streets wearing rain boots. The footwear is the only kind that parents allow them to wear so they can play in such environments. But after playtime, clean-up time might not be as much fun.
There are specific steps and a few tips and tricks to ensure that your kid’s rain boots can still look as good as new. Some of these aren’t your standard shoe-cleaning procedures, but doing them will help you better maintain the shoes. Here they are.
Ensure Your Kids wear Socks
First thing’s first, always make sure that your kids wear socks while they wear them. The effects go both ways regarding odor and bacterial formation. Both your child’s feet and the boots will turn out smelling unfortunate and full of bacteria that can exponentially harm them. For your kids, this can result in blisters and boils, while their boots will deteriorate faster. The socks help absorb any excess moisture, keeping both the feet and footwear clean and beautiful after every use.
Always Clean them After Every Use
It’s imperative that you clean your kids’ rain boots after every use. Don’t wait until the next time they’ll need them as they may not look and feel the same by that time. It’s easy to mistake that since these boots are made of rubber—a highly-durable and strong material—that maintaining it is a piece of cake. But in reality, it’s a bit more challenging than regular footwear. If you wait too long to wash them, you’re going to need a few extra steps and more materials to achieve its original sheen.
Avoid Extreme Temperatures
The best rain boots for kids need the right temperature to be entirely and properly-maintained, If you’re leaving the pair out to dry for a couple of hours or days, it’s best to avoid extreme temperatures. Too hot or too cold environments can substantially damage the boots, and frequently, to the point of disrepair. Arguably, the best time to dry them out is late in the afternoon, when the sun is still barely there but the coldness of the evening is starting to take over. Open spaced rooms without stuffy air can do as well.
Coat them with Oil
The rubber in children’s rain boots prefers unique alternatives when being cleaned. While regular shoe polish will do for a variety of other kinds of footwear, your kids’ rain boots need oil to get cleaned really. Even cheap kids rain boots with obviously low quality will benefit from a coat or two of oil. Flaxseed oil and coconut oil are just some that can be used to wash, polish, and shine your children’s rain-ready footwear for them to look as good as new. Merely put them on an old cloth or pour them over onto the boots directly.
Air Dry Them
It can’t be stressed enough that your kids’ rain boots are not your ordinary footwear. The rubber material alone needs special care so that it wouldn’t substantially differ from its original state. When it comes to drying these boots after using them and washing them, it’s best to leave them on any open space. Leave it to the sun and the fresh air to dry it. This way, there’s little to no difference between when your children wore them when you cleaned them, and after they’ve dried up.
Rinse and Repeat
Every footwear, kids’ rain boots included, need a good rinsing or two. This is especially after your children wore them while playing on muddy streets. All the soft and liquidy dirt that may befall your little ones’ rubber footwear can quickly be taken off with a good rinsing. Hose them down gently, as too strong water can also slightly damage the pair. For those that acquired dry dirt, wiping them off with an old cloth or brushing them off would help as well.
Don’t Forget the Insides
You’d think that since your children’s rain boots are protective footwear that there’s no way need washing too. Well, they do. Washing the insides of any pair of rain boots is just as important as maintaining its outsides. As mentioned earlier, if your kids don’t even wear socks while wearing these boots, chances are bacteria will form inside that can harm both the footwear and the wearer. And the odor that will emanate from both the shoes and the feet is not something you’d like to smell as well!
Fill Them Up
Boots have very defined shapes that, from time to time, need to be taken care of else they’ll look completely different from when you bought them. While this is mostly for knee-high boots, this type of care applies to even the best rain boots for kids that money can buy. When they’re not in use and are merely in storage, fill them up with some stuffing, paper, or tissues. Doing so will retain its original shape, and your kids won’t feel uncomfortable wearing them again after a long time.
Buffer to Shine
Finally, when your beets are already squeaky clean, a good buffering wouldn’t hurt. Buffering them up is best for yellow kids rain boots, practically the most common color for the footwear, to ensure that signature storybook-like shine. You can buy a buffer machine at any appliance store or polish them diligently with some shoe polish. Not only will the pair shimmer by the sunlight, but they’ll also be a bit easier to clean the next time it needs a good wash.
Like with the most precious of designer footwear, your kids’ rain boots need meticulous cleaning and maintaining. That eye-popping shine you see when first buy them for your children won’t be easy to achieve if you’re not carefully washing them.