Real Estate Agent with Dunnigan, Realtors, Sacramento (916) 425-9715 CalBRE # 01188158

Nope...not kidding!

In a world that accepts tossing all things no longer needed as long as it is recycled, what happened to shoe polish?

I know... a strange affiliation, so let me explain.

My experience in 6th grade was dominated by the fact that I had to wear oxford shoes.  You know...the ones that were white with black leather across the lace area.  Wow...they were ugly!  But, because they were predominantly white, shoe polish was an absolute necessity.

Skip 40 plus years.  Now, when our shoes begin to show wear and tear, how many of us toss them?  I have 2 such pairs of shoes.  Other than the scuffs on the toes and heels, they are still perfectly good.  However, I was accepting the fact that I was going to have to replace them soon.

Then...I watched my husband get out a shoe shine kit straight from his fathers era.  He smoothed on the polish and buffed them to a beautiful shine in a matter of minutes.   Sadly, it had never occurred to me that I could polish my shoes back to their original look. 

Tonight, I asked my husband if I could use his shoe polishing kit.  I rubbed on the polish and then buffed away.  Voila! I had shoes that were wonderfully comfortable and looked like new!

So, my question stands and cries out for expansion.  What else do we assume has lost its life when all we really have to do is buff it a little?


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Pamela Seley
West Coast Realty Division - Murrieta, CA
Residential Real Estate Agent serving SW RivCo CA

Hi, Paula, in a world of consumables it would seem we toss things out without considering if a little life could be brought back to them.

Mar 03, 2011 04:49 PM #1
Roger Radcliff
AFB Specialist - Barksdale

nice post, put a smile on my face. I think I'll  knock the dust off my shoes and shine them in the morning. Thanks!

Mar 03, 2011 04:50 PM #2
Vickie Nagy
Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate - Palm Springs, CA
Vickie Jean the Palm Springs Condo Queen

Paula, this is a really thought-provoking post. I have recently experienced a heightened awareness of appreciation for things I took for granted many years ago. Your example of shoes is an excellent one. So many shoe tops and soles are made of synthethic materials and not made to last. I have been musing over my Black penny loafers recently. They're such awesome shoes still and have been part of my wardrobe for many years. I have other, newer shoes that last just a season or two.

Mar 03, 2011 04:50 PM #3
Jon Quist
Tucson's BUYERS ONLY Realtor since 1996

I'm going to say my golf game. I know, you were probably looking for a more profound response, but that's what fit for me.

Mar 03, 2011 04:51 PM #4
Peg Barcelo
Fluff My House! Home Staging Inc. 250.486.6369 - Summerland, BC
The FlufftasticStager from Summerland, BC

Paula, I wear my shoes until they die and then I wish I would have bought 2 pairs when I bought that first pair. I have a lot of shoes, but my faves get worn down to a nub! My husband also has a shoe polish kit, the smell always takes me back to when my dad would polish his cowboy boots!

Mar 03, 2011 04:53 PM #5
Doug Anderson
Tucker Associates Real Estate Services - Danville, CA
Bay Area Real Estate Views

Paula - Polished shoes are a good indication of the type of person you are dealing with...or so I have heard from those in the prior generation. Polished my shoes before work this morning.

Mar 03, 2011 04:58 PM #6
Lynn B. Friedman
Atlanta Homes ODAT Realty Call/Text 404-939-2727 Buckhead - Midtown - Westside -- and more ... - Atlanta, GA
Concierge Service for Our Atlanta Sellers & Buyers

Dear Paula -

You remind me how unhappy I am when I cannot get something repaired!  When you stand there and the person says - "probably better to just get a new one" when you want to keep the one you have!

My camera needed a $3.00 part but the cost of the labor, mailing it off, insurance --- about $30.00 more and I would have a new camera!

What is the "RIGHT" answer? Recycle or repair???

Polish or charity shop?

Have a happy day -

Mar 03, 2011 05:01 PM #7
Troy Hageman
RE/MAX Momentum - Brighton, CO

Men have never lost shoe polish, its just a sign of the times that we now have to shine our wifes as well as our own. Due you think this means she will start ironing my shirts?

Mar 03, 2011 05:04 PM #8
Scott Warga
ACSI American Construction Specialists & Investigations - Gilbert, AZ

This is a great post. I was just thinking the same thing the other day.

I went to buy shoe polish and they had the cheap stuff in a bottle, they had sponges with oil but for actual polish they had black, and brown.

My shoes are tan.

I went to 4 different stores before I gave up and went to a western wear store and they had 15 different colors. I even picked up a can of saddle soap while I was there.

Mar 04, 2011 05:00 AM #9
Paula Swayne
Dunnigan, Realtors, Sacramento (916) 425-9715 - Sacramento, CA
Realtor-Land Park, East Sac & Curtis Park -Dunniga

Hi Pamela!
And the best thing is, these things have evidence of being well loved by the fact that they are worn!  I am going to eke out every bit of life out of those wonderful shoes!

Hi Roger!
Good for you! I have to admit, part of my husbands shoe shine kit had a lot of dust, but not the polish, brush or rag!

Hi Vickie!
My husband even has his shoes resoled...they last him years!  Of course, at a size 15, it is worth the cost!

Hi Jon!
I had to reread my post to understand your comment...then I had a good laugh! Profound is overrated!

Hi Peg!
Evidently cowboys take better care of their boots...you are one of a couple mentions of cowboy boots!  At a width of 4E, I really have a hard time finding shoes, so they have to last!

Hi Doug!
Well, you must be one of those practical, down to earth people who value the quality stuff!

Hi Lynn!
I know..quite a quandry!  I have a refrigerator that is in the process of kicking the bucket.  To fix it initially $150, to fix completely $800.  I think this is a time when a new one is in order!

Hi Troy!
You made me smile as one of the fun comments my husband and I share is that I never promised to iron his shirts!  I don't even iron my own...if they need ironing, they aren't bought!

Hi Scott!
Well, when I have to buy my own shoe polish, I am going to go to the boot store! Thanks for the heads up!


Mar 04, 2011 06:30 AM #10
Gary Woltal
Keller Williams Realty - Flower Mound, TX
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth

Paula, we have become a throwaway generation it seems and unless we take time to preserve them it always gets tossed.

Mar 04, 2011 06:45 AM #11
Jennifer Prestwich
Henderson, Thornton, Broomfield and Westminster - Henderson, CO
Madison & Co Properties

Hey, Paula- did you know that you can re-furbish suede shoes too?  Sometimes just cleaning them is difficult, especially if they have scuffs or salt stains.  They actually make a spray that brings them back to life.  I cannot recall what the brand is right now, but if you have a shoe repair shop near you, they will have it.

i have had boots re-soled and polished because I couldn't find anything remotely close to what I had and loved.  And I remember my dad taking out his shoe shine kit on weekends to buff and polish his shoes.  Neat!

Mar 05, 2011 10:39 AM #13
Paula Swayne
Dunnigan, Realtors, Sacramento (916) 425-9715 - Sacramento, CA
Realtor-Land Park, East Sac & Curtis Park -Dunniga

Hi Gary!
I  think sometimes it simply doesn't occur to us to try to rehab something...such as my shoes.  I do think we will get back to it with the economy the way it is!

Hi John!
Now that I am back to polishing, I might just have to create my own as well!

Hi Jennifer!
Thanks for the info regarding suede shoes...if they ever make them in 4E, I will remember your advice!

Mar 05, 2011 12:36 PM #14
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Paula Swayne

Realtor-Land Park, East Sac & Curtis Park -Dunniga
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