The first-ever shoelace becomes popular at the end of the 18th Century. It was introduced as an alternative to the decorative shoe buckle, and it gained popularity almost instantly. Today, shoelaces are available in a variety of sizes, materials, and colors and they are part of just about every type of footwear. Out of all the colors that shoelaces are available in, white shoelaces need extra care and attention.
In fact, muddy or scruffy shoelaces can diminish the look of even the most sophisticated of all shoes. This is why it will be worthwhile to pay more attention to how clean your shoelaces if you don’t want to be judged by your unkept and unsightly shoes.
The Different Types of Shoelaces
Before you start cleaning your shoelace, you need to know the material it is made from. The following are some of the materials that are used in making shoelaces.
The shoelaces found in most casual shoes are usually made of cotton. Flat cotton shoelaces are usually essential with Vans, Chuck Taylors, and other types of sneakers. These shoelaces are mostly white, but they can also come in a variety of other colors. You can also buy round-shaped cotton shoelaces. Since there is no difference between round-shaped or flat cotton shoelaces, either one can be used in any shoe, and it will not affect the shoe’s performance.
One of the reasons why cotton is the preferred choice when it comes to shoelaces is that they are easier to clean. Since cotton shoelaces are the most common, they are affordable and easy to find. If your cotton shoelace is damaged for some reason, replacing them won’t be a problem. Cotton shoelaces can be purchased from any local shoe store or drugstore.
Polyester Shoelaces (Textured)
Textured polyester is another common material that is used in making laces for shoes and boots. Since textured polyester shoelaces are waterproof, they are considered to be more durable as compared to other materials such as cotton. There are some heavy-duty shoes and especially-designed boots that require textured polyester shoelaces since those shoes or boots have been built for rugged tasks.
Textured polyester shoelaces are also commonly used in shoes that are designed for sports, skateboarding, and skiing. The polyester material is not only waterproof, but it is also thicker as compared to other shoelace materials. This minimizes the likelihood of the shoelaces getting tangled in a knot while playing sports.
While textured polyester shoelaces are considered to be stronger than other shoelaces, they are available in few colors. For instance, you are likely to find textured polyester shoelaces in only black and white colors. When it comes to cleaning these shoelaces, they can be put in a washing machine, but they have to be air-dried to keep the polyester from frying (losing its shape and texture).
Polyester Shoelaces (Spun)
Spun polyester is similar to textured polyester in several ways. The only difference is that spun polyester shoelaces have a smoother and more uniform appearance. This is because spun polyester is softer than textured polyester, while still being just as durable. Also, spun polyester shoelaces do not give off a corded appearance like nylon shoelaces, which makes them a good choice for sophisticated, high-end shoes and boots.
Nylon shoelaces are considered to be even more durable than textured polyester and cotton shoelaces. These shoelaces are normally thick and tangle-resistant. One of the main benefits of using nylon shoelaces is that they are stain-resistant and can resist both water and mud, which makes them the most viable option if you want your shoelaces to remain clean for longer. Because of their sturdy build and ability to keep from getting muddy or wet, nylon shoelaces also cost more as compared to other types of shoelaces. Despite their impressive price tag, nylon shoelaces are considered for high-quality footwear because of their longevity and stain-resistant properties.
Shoelaces that are made from elastic material are attached to the holes of the shoes. This allows the wearer to slip their feet into the shoe without having to adjust the shoelace. Elastic shoelaces are mostly used when you do not want to deal with having to tie your shoelaces, and they are a good choice for some types of footwear. There are many footwear manufacturers that are now using the no-tie versions in their shoe designs because of the clean, sleek appearance that they lend to the shoes.
Here’s a detailed article on different types of shoelaces on the market today.
How to Clean White Shoelaces
Now that we all have a good idea of the various materials that shoelaces are made of, it’s time to find out how to clean white shoelaces. The time it takes for white shoelaces to get dirty may seem like white shoelaces attract dirt and grime wherever you go. The good news is that there are multiple ways you can clean your white shoelaces. The following are some of the tips you can try to make sure your white shoelaces are always clean.
Tip 1: In the Washing Machine
White shoelaces are usually made from cotton or other machine washable materials. This means you can simply dump them in the washing machine and let it do the rest. Since the color of white shoelaces does not wear off, you could wash your white shoelaces during your regular washing routine. When cleaning white shoelaces in the washing machine, you will need to remove the laces. Some people throw in the shoes with shoelaces, which is a bad idea.
Once you have removed the shoelaces, hold them under the tap and use a soft toothbrush to brush away any dirt or grime that may have got stuck in the grooves of the shoelaces. Be careful not put the shoelaces under hot water because that could end up damaging the texture or result in the shoelace shrinking.
After you have brushed any dirt and grime from the surface of the shoelaces, examine it once again and apply a stain treater that you can get from any local convenience store. As the name implies, using the stain treater will remove any discoloration on the white shoelaces.
Before you wash off the stain remover, make sure that the chemical is allowed to get absorbed by the material of the shoelace for at least 20 minutes. This will give enough time for the chemicals in the stain remover to work their magic.
Once you have applied the stain treater and left it for 20 minutes, you can place the white shoelaces in a mesh bag or a pillowcase. Next, place the closed mesh bag inside the washing machine, add the detergent, and turn the machine on. Remember to use cold water for the washing process as well.
It is okay to wash white shoelaces along with other articles of clothing in the laundry just as long as you are sure that the color of the other clothes does not run or else it can end up ruining your white shoelaces. You can also include some bleach if you are only going to wash the shoelaces in the machine.
If you are only going to wash your shoelaces, you can add a cup of bleach to get that extra whiteness on the fabric once the shoelaces have been washed. Once the washing machine has completed its revolutions, you can remove the closed bag and take out the white shoelaces for drying. You will need to hang the laces on the drying rack so that they can dry.
One common mistake that most people make when putting their white shoelaces in the washing machine is that they place the shoelaces in the dryer after washing. This is a bad idea since it can have a negative effect on the shape and the texture of the shoelace. When you want to dry your white shoelaces, always let the drying process take its course with natural air.
Tip 2: Using a Stain Stick
Using a stain stick is another efficient way to remove any stains from white shoelaces. Using a stain stick is especially useful if you want to remove light stains such as that of coffee or food. One of the benefits of using a stain stick to remove marks and stains from the shoelaces is that you do not have to remove the shoelaces from the shoes. This also makes this method a better option as compared to the other techniques of cleaning white shoelaces on this list.
While you will still be putting the shoelaces in the washing machine, using the stain stick to pre-heat the shoelaces loosens the stain so that the detergent and the washing machine can do the rest. There is also a good possibility that the stain will be removed without the need of laundering the shoelace.
While this is considered as an effective way to quickly remove some stains from shoelaces, it is not recommended to use this method all the time since it could damage the shoelace. Using the stain stick to pre-heat the shoelaces should be used when you need to remove a stain from the shoelace but don’t have the time to go through the process we’ve mentioned in the first tip.
Read Also: How to Clean Satin Shoes
Tip 3: Washing the Shoelaces
If you’re looking to go old-school when it comes to washing your white shoelaces, then you can always wash them with your hands. That doesn’t mean you will not have to follow the right steps to make sure that the shoelaces are cleaned properly and all stains are removed. To get started, you will first have to remove the laces from the shoes.
Once the shoelaces have been removed, you can remove any dirt and grime with the help of a soft brush. This will remove any excess dirt and grime from the tiny grooves on the shoelace. Now, you will have to place the shoelaces in either a pillowcase or a lightweight cloth bag and close it. Fill the sink with lukewarm water and add some detergent to loosen the dirt, grime or other stains on the white shoelace. Adding some bleach to the mix is a good way of making sure that the shoelace is cleaned properly, and that it maintains its brilliant white color. You wouldn’t want to be stuck with a dull white shoelace that can ruin the whole appearance of your shoes.
Now, place the bag containing the shoelaces in the mixture made of water, detergent, and bleach. Since shoelaces are lightweight, the bag may come up to the surface, you do not want that to happen. To avoid the bag from floating above the water, you can use a weight to make sure that the bag remains at the bottom of the sink or bucket.
After about 20 minutes, take the bag out of the water and remove the shoelaces. While they are still wet, brush them gently using a soft toothbrush, focusing on the area of the stains. You can then hang the shoelaces on a drying rack to dry out. Again, you do not want to put the shoelaces in the dryer since that could result in shrinking the shoelace. Check to see if the shoelaces have dried properly and that the stains have been removed before lacing up your shoes.
According to the fashion gurus, white sneakers are not only for rappers and athletes; because of their versatility, they can be used for making your own personal style statement. You can rock a pair of an all-white sneaker with just about any outfit, but there’s only one problem. While shoelaces don’t usuallyattraction much attention, dirty shoelaces do. This is why you should use the aforementioned tips to make sure that your white shoelaces are clean at all times.