Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Shoesday Tuesday (for men!)

That's right! It's Shoesday Tuesday for the guys this week! I feel bad about not covering enough about menswear, so this week, it's all about footwear for the boys! My advice for men isn't that much different than my advice for women- shoes are an investment not only in your wardrobe, but in your overall health. Take care of your feet and you'll be much happier in the long run. Think about it: you take care of your car because you need it to take you to and from work every day, right? Your shoes are the vehicle of your life, so they should be high quality and you should maintain them. I'll try to keep this in guy terminology, but as I'm about as girly as they come, I might struggle a bit, so bear with me.

First, buy quality shoes. Just like with cars, you get what you pay for. Think of cheap shoes like you'd think of a used Kia. It's cheap and as a result it comes with lots of problems- it wears out quickly, it's not that comfortable and you know you're not going to have it for that long because it's not going to last. Quality shoes on the other hand are like a new BMW- not only do they look good, they're comfortable, stylish, and classic- in other words, an investment. A little regular maintenance keeps them looking and feeling as good as new.

Yes, that's right- maintenance for your shoes, and I'm not just talking about shining the leather.
Think of the maintenance on your shoes like the oil change and tire rotation you get for your car. If you don't do the regular maintenance, the car wears out sooner. It's the same with shoes! Quality shoes should last a long time, and if you buy a classic style in black and brown, you'll have them for years. Take them to a cobbler at least twice a year. Cobblers can work wonders- they can do everything from repairing the leather to replacing the soles and all for a very reasonable price. If there isn't a shoe repair shop nearby where you live or work, there is an online service called
Resole America who will take your shoes via regular mail, fix them and mail them back to you in less than 2 weeks! Remarkable? Remarkable!

I mentioned that maintenance isn't just about shining the leather, but that is still a part of it. It's like putting a fresh coat of wax on that new BMW, right guys? When you purchase a quality pair of leather shoes, make sure you also purchase a leather care product and APPLY it. By using these products, you can extend the life of your shoes by YEARS. And not only dress shoes! If your job requires high quality leather boots (That's you, lumberjacks! I know you're reading this!), you can make a small investment in caring for the leather and in the following years you will actually save yourself HUNDREDS of DOLLARS! Often the leather care products are sold at the same store where you buy your shoes, so it's easy and convenient to buy them at the same time! Also, the clerk will often be able to tell you about the best product to purchase based on your shoes as well as how to apply, how often, etc. But, just in case you're the type who buys everything online, you can find products here, here, here, here, and here. And those are just a few places! I really do recommend buying shoes in a high end department store like Nordstrom or Neiman Marcus where there will not only be lots of shoe options, but also lots of shoe care products.

Unfortunately, like all cars, all shoes eventually wear out beyond repair and must be replaced. If you've purchased quality shoes and taken good care of them, there should be at least 2 or 3 years in between purchases. Good luck, fellas! I hope you have happy feet from now on!

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