The material used in making the upper part of shoes usually contains pores for breathability purposes. And as much as this is an excellent feature, it is responsible for wetting your shoes when you walk during rain or snow.
Waterproof spray prevents this from happening by coating the surface of your shoes, thus repelling water.
If you spend a lot of time outdoors and care about prolonging the life of your shoes as well as want to avoid getting your feet wet, you should get a waterproof spray.
The technology behind waterproof sprays may seem a bit unrealistic especially to someone who has never used these products.
And if you are wondering whether waterproof spray really works, adjust your reading glasses because this review won’t only answer this question but will inform you on all you need to know about waterproofing sprays.
What is a Waterproof Spray and How Does It Work?
Even though you may have never thought about dragging your favorite bag through the mud, that’s exactly what your footwear goes through every day.
Shoes are subjected to the worst conditions. This is why hacks such as waterproof sprays were invented.
This modern footwear product contains ingredients such as oil and wax which prevent water from getting inside your shoes.
The waterproof spray is ideal even for shoes that have been waterproofed by the manufacturer. It offers an extra layer of defense that is much needed during the rainy season or winter.
Compared to other waterproofing treatments for shoes, sprays are more effective and easier to use. You just need to clean the shoe, remove laces, spray it and let it dry for more than 30 minutes.
The effects of a waterproof spray can last for 4 weeks. This however depends on how much you wear that particular shoe.
It is advisable to waterproof spray your shoes only when it’s wet outside and when you are going hiking or any outdoor activity that involves stepping on wet grounds.
There is no need to waterproof your shoes during summer or when going to the office. Because what are the odds that your shoes will get wet?
Can Waterproof Spray be Used on All Types of Footwear?
Not unless you want to wear the same pair of shoes throughout the entire winter or spring. You should consider waterproofing some if not all of your shoes.
This is where it gets tricky. Not all waterproof sprays are created equally. There are some which are designed to waterproof leather whereas others are ideal for fabrics such as cotton.
To help you make an informed choice when shopping for waterproofing sprays, below I have listed some products you should consider depending on your shoe materials.
- Best Waterproof Spray for Leather – Apple Brand Garde Rain and Stain Water Repellent
This is one of the few trusted leather waterproofing sprays on the market. Well known for its ability to protect your shoes from water, Apple Brand Garde will also keep other liquids at bay. It’s easy to apply and gentle on leather.
- Best Waterproof Spray for Canvas – Scotchgard Fabric Water Shield
A highly rated product on Amazon, Scotchgard is great at waterproofing shoes made of canvas fabric. It can be used to waterproof jackets and backpacks as well. This is the ultimate waterproof spray for hikers.
- Best Waterproof Spray for Suede – Crep Protect Universal Protector
Do you own a pair of suede boots and want to keep your feet dry during the rainy season?
With each application of Crop Protect Universal Protector, you are guaranteed 14-day protection from water and other liquids. Other than that, it also keeps your footwear looking as good as new.
- Best Waterproof Spray for Hiking Shoes – Kiwi Boot Waterproofer
Are you a hiking enthusiast? Or do you spend a lot of time outdoors? Then the Kiwi Boot Waterproofer is a must-have!
Designed for all shoe materials, Kiwi gives your hiking shoes a heavy-duty silicone coating that will keep water from getting into your shoes. Kiwi has lots of positive reviews online.
- Best Waterproof Spray for High-end Boots – Cadillac Select Premium Water Repellent and Stain Protector
If you have parted with a couple of hundred dollars for an expensive boot, then it’s only fair that you invest in a premium water repellent for your high-end shoe.
This all in one water repellent and stain protector works wonders on leather shoes, bags, and jackets.
What Other Factors Should You Consider When Choosing a Waterproof Spray?
From the above list of best waterproof sprays, we have already seen that most of these products are designed for certain shoe materials. You should always adhere to the instructions provided by a manufacturer.
But, other than material suitability, there are other essential factors you should consider when choosing a waterproof spray. They include;
Level of Water Protection
There are sprays that can waterproof shoes for occasional rain, whereas others offer ultimate protection. These are two different levels of protection and you should get a spray that meets your protection requirements.
Depending on when and where you intend to go, ensure that you pick a waterproof spray that can offer the level of water protection you need.
Depending on the ingredients used to make the waterproof spray, there are some that should be used once every few weeks. Whereas there are others that will offer protection during the entire season before they need refreshing.
For those of us who are keen on style and appearances, you should be very keen on a spray’s ability to alter the color of your shoe’s fabric.
During coating, one may expect a slight change in color. So, it’s best you perform a patch test and observe the difference.
Also, waterproof sprays shouldn’t be used on bright colored shoes or those that are worn solely for fashion. To also avoid altering your shoe’s fabric, spray evenly.
Safety of Ingredients
Waterproof sprays are either silicone or water-based. The latter is suitable for light shoe materials whereas silicone is best for heavy-duty fabrics.
When choosing a waterproof spray, have in mind which material you plan to use it on. Don’t forget that these sprays also contain some chemicals.
Spray your shoes in a well-ventilated space and let them dry before putting your feet in the treated shoes.
Ease of Use
How effective a waterproof treatment is, depends on proper application. This is why most of these products come in the form of sprays as they are easy to use.
Most manufacturers will include a set of instructions on the label or package. Ensure that you follow these guidelines strictly.
For instance, when using a waterproof spray, hold it at least 9 inches from the shoe. Make sure the footwear is clean and dry before spraying. And for the coating to be adequate to repel water, spray several layers.
What Other Benefits Do I get from Waterproof Spray?
We already know that the main benefit of waterproof spray is to protect your shoes from water damage. But, what else do you get from it?
Most waterproof sprays offer stain protection. Should you spill some juice or coffee on your shoes, the coating from the spray will make them easier to clean.
How Often Should I Spray My Shoes?
With a quality waterproof spray, you don’t need to do it regularly. The reason being, the coating created on your shoes can last for more than two weeks.
If you wear your shoes regularly in a constantly wet environment, then re-spray after every two weeks. When it’s mostly dry, you can spray once a month to keep stains away.
Can Waterproof Spray Damage My Shoes?
Yes, it can if you continue using the wrong spray. Referring to the point I made on material suitability, not all sprays are versatile. If it’s meant to be used on leather, don’t use it on suede boots.
These sprays are usually designed to waterproof specific materials, and it may be too harsh to another material.
Overall, you should know that adding any foreign element to a piece of fabric may result in damage. Nonetheless, the above recommendations have been tested and approved to be used on different shoe materials.
Is It Possible to Wash Away Waterproofing Spray?
Water-based waterproofing treatments are easier to wash off than their silicone counterparts.
Always refer back to the manufacturer’s instructions on how to get rid of a waterproof coating on your shoes. In some cases, you may have to use a strong cleaning detergent.
Should I Spray a Waterproof Boot?
Most winter boots nowadays arrive when they are already waterproofed by the manufacturer. However, with time, the coating tends to fade and water finds its way into your boots.
When that happens, you should re-waterproof your boots. And with new boots, you can also waterproof them to enhance their water repellent performance.