Prepping the Arsenal: Shining Shoes

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Sunday is my day to catch up, recharge and prepare for the week ahead. Part of the ritual entails what I think of as “prepping my arsenal,” which includes cleaning, laundry, ironing and shining my shoes, which I demonstrate in this groundbreaking tour-de-force. Enjoy.



  1. Nice post, George. Noticed you installed taps on the heel and toe of your shoes. I wonder if you’d describe the advantage you find in taps over replacing a wood sole altogether with leather–or is it simply a matter of preference. In addition, for those of us who have never shined shoes, can you say what cues our shoes give signaling it is time for a shining. Thanks!

    • George Reply

      Hi, Neal. Thanks for watching. I merely meant this to be a peek at my Sundays rather than an instructional, but since you asked… I prefer to stick with the original materials used in the making of the shoe. The soles of Goodyear welted oxfords in particular are rather dense and take time to break in. In the breaking-in process, I tend to wear out the toe of the sole very quickly. (Something in the way I walk?) Taps are just a simpler (and more cost-effective) solution for me. As far as the frequency of shining… Once each week or every two weeks at the most. Whenever they start to get dull. Between shines, I touch them up with one of those Kiwi “Express Shine” buffers.

  2. Great post. I call this process the “broke man’s botox.” A way to pick yourself up & get things ready all at once. I did two yesterday & enjoyed it.

  3. Looks like a great Sunday. I do the same thing – laundry, light cleaning, put clothes away, etc. Perfect time to listen to Snap Judgement or Stuff You Should Know. Or just some music.

    Do you have a shoe shine kit? I was thinking about trying to make one. Art of Manliness has a good how-to post.


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