How to Clean Clarks Desert Boots: A Comprehensive Guide

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If you’re buying a pair of boots for everyday use, Clarks Desert boots are always a good choice. They’re inexpensive, sturdy, comfortable, and look great on your feet.

However, when you use them regularly, dirt and stains start to build up on your favorite pair of boots. That’s when you need to clean them properly. Now you may ask, how to clean Clarks Desert boots?

Well, You can use a suede brush, suede eraser, or a cleaning solution to clean Clarks suede desert boots. Moreover, while cleaning your Clarks beeswax desert boots first brush them off, apply saddle soap, and lastly use leather oil or balm for extra shine. 

I know it seems like everything, right? Trust me, it’s just the tip of an iceberg. There are many more ways to keep your boots clean and the cleaning methods are quite easy.

So, without any further delay let’s jump into the main section, shall we?

How to Clean Clarks Suede Desert Boots?

When it comes to cleaning Clarks suede desert boots, it won’t require too much effort. These boots are suitable for regular uses and won’t need routine cleaning. 

However, you should clean them once a month to keep them looking tidy. So, let’s take a look at the following methods to see how to do that. 

Method 1: Using Suede Brush

If you’ve just purchased a pair of suede shoes, you must purchase a suede brush or a cleaning kit along with it. 

Frankly speaking, the suede brush is great when it comes to cleaning your suede boots. Suede brushes are efficient, cost-effective, and easy to use. Besides suede brush, you need the following things to perform the task:

  • A Suede brush (you know already, right?)
  • A butter knife (not essential) 
  • Old newspaper

Now let’s see how you clean your Clarks suede boots using a suede brush.

Step 1: Prepare the Cleaning Area

Before you start off, find the right place where you can clean your boots. The ‘right place’ means where you can move around easily. Also, if the place gets dirty, it won’t be an issue for you. Now put the newspaper on the floor to cover the surface. 

Step 2: Get Rid of Excess Dirt

Once you’re done it’s time to clean your boots. First, knock your boots together to remove the excess dirt. Then take the laces off and take a dry rug to clean the dirt as much as you can.

Step 4: Apply Suede Brush

Now grab the suede brush and start to brush your both boots smoothly in one direction. It’ll help to restore the knap evenly. 

If the brush has hard bristles, brush gently, otherwise, it can damage your boots. For your information, horsehair bristle brushes are great for suede shoes, they work great.

Step 4: Use Butter Knife for Stubborn Dirt and Stains

I think you’ve already found some sticky dirt and stains which are not supposed to come off with a suede brush. Well, that’s where a butter knife comes in. 

For stubborn scratches and stains, use the butter knife smoothly to scrape them off. If anything remains, brush the boots again to clean them.

Method 2: Applying Suede Eraser

Is there still some dirt and stains on your beautiful boots? Worry not, I got your back. 

In most cases, the combination of a suede brush and butter knife takes care of the problem. However, sometimes, this duo fails to remove the dark marks and stains and that’s where a suede eraser comes in to help you out. 

Suede erasers are actually crepe rubbers which are great to use on suede leather to remove stains and dark spots. 

Here’s what you need:

  • A suede eraser (you can use a regular eraser too)
  • A suede brush

Let’s see the procedure:

Step 1: Rub the Eraser on Dark Spots

Grab the suede eraser and rub it gently on the stains and dark spots. You should gently rub the eraser in small circles and don’t apply too much pressure in the first place. However, you can apply more pressure if the stain doesn’t go away. 

Guess what? You’ll spot the difference soon. The leather will appear either matte or gray soon. If it doesn’t show the result soon, worry not. Repeat the process and see the difference.  

Step 2: Brush off Your Boots

After rubbing your boots with the suede eraser, there’ll be some loose debris that stays off. To remove them, you need the help of a suede brush. Brush off your boots with a suede brush to clean them off completely. 

Hopefully, you’ve already cleaned your boots since methods 1 and 2 work great for cleaning most suede desert boots. However, if you’re misfortunate you need to move to the following methods. 

Method 3: Apply Cleaning Solution

The cleaning solution isn’t necessary in most cases. Still, when the suede brush and suede eraser fail to do their job, you need to apply the cleaning solution to make your boot clean and stain-free.

Here’s what you need:

  • A cleaning solution 
  • Water and vinegar solution (if you don’t have a cleaning solution)

If you use the cleaning solution, just use a small amount on the marks and let the solution sit on the stain for 10-20 minutes. After that, use the suede brush and then the suede eraser that I showed you on methods 1 and 2. 

However, if you want to make a homemade solution, it’s like a piece of cake. Mix equal amounts of vinegar and water in a bowl to make the solution. 

When the solution is ready, dip a dry cloth in it and scrub on your boots. Make sure the boots don’t get too wet, it’ll damage your favorite pair.

Anyway, after applying the water-vinegar solution, let your boot dry properly and use the suede brush and eraser to clean your boots.  

Method 4: Making Use of Towel and Newspaper

When you don’t have any suede brush and eraser to clean your boot, there’s another solution for you. It’s the cheapest solution to clean your boot. On top of that, this method works out to remove water stains from your boots as well.

However, it’s a bit risky since your boot will get wet in this process. You might damage your boots if the boots get wet too much. 

Here’s what you need:

  • A water container
  • A couple of rags or towels
  • Old newspapers


Wet conditions are not good for suede shoes. When your boots absorb water, they may lose their original shape. Moreover, water makes suede leather flappy and the leather starts to fold. 

Still, if you want to do this, see the procedure below:

Step 1: Soak up the Clean Towel

To begin with, get a clean rag or towel and soak it up in clean water. Twist the towel to remove the excess water and make it slightly wet. Keep in mind, if the cloth is too wet, it can damage your boots.

Step 2: Rub the Boot with a Towel

Once the towel is soaked, your job is to rub the boots with the damp towel. After that, grab another clean towel (obviously not wet) and dry clean your boots to get rid of excess water. 

Step 3: Fill the Boots with Newspapers

Grab a few old newspapers and tear them into pieces to make balls out of them and stuff them inside your boots. 

Step 4: Air Dry Your Boots 

After filling the boots with newspapers, there’s nothing more left to do. Now place the boots in a well-ventilated area and let them dry completely. After a few hours, you’ll find a new appearance in your boot. 

Method 5: Using Dye

Perhaps the stains are so stubborn that you want to saturate your boots’ color or give them a new appearance. In both cases, one thing is common, which is that your boots will be cleaned and look like a new pair. 

However, this method is applicable for the worst scenario where no way is left to resort to your boots.

Here’s what you need for dye:

  • Suede dye
  • Newspapers 

To dye your suede boots, make 2 balls with the newspapers as I said earlier. It’ll help your boots to maintain their shape after absorbing the dye solution. 

After that, apply the suede dye to your boots and let them air dry in a well-ventilated place. Pull the newspapers out from the boots once they dried completely. 

How to Clean Clarks Beeswax Leather Boots?

One of the best things I like about Clarks Beeswax leather boots is they don’t need to be cleaned frequently like the suede ones. In fact, Clarks Beeswax boots are easier to maintain than suede boots to some extent.

However, the problem arises when you use the pair for a long time, and it fills with dirt. 

Performing basic cleaning of your boots once a month is a good option to maintain their appearance. So, let’s have a look at the methods to clean your Clarks Beeswax leather boots. 

Method 1: With the Help of a Soft Bristled Brush

This is the simplest yet most effective solution to clean your boots. On top of that, this is a cheap and less time-consuming process to maintain your boots’ appearance. 

Before we start, I would suggest avoiding brushes with hard bristles. They might leave scratches on the leather surface and it won’t be a pleasant experience for you.

Here’s what you need:

  • A soft Bristled brush
  • A dry rug (if you don’t have any brush)

Now see the procedure:

Step 1: Get Rid of Excess Dirt

Take the boots in your hands and knock them together to remove the excess dirt. You can remove the shoelaces as well to clean the boots even more easily and thoroughly.

Step 2: Use the Brush 

Once the dirt is gone, gently brush the entire boots to get rid of the debris and dirt. Try to remove as much dirt as you can because a single piece of debris can leave a scratch on your favorite pair of boots. 

In case, instead of the brush, you can use a dry soft rug to wipe your entire boots. 

Method 2: Applying Saddle Soap

Once you get rid of the dirt, it’s time to apply saddle soap to your boots. If you’ve time, don’t hesitate to use saddle soap on your boots. 

Saddle soap is a mild soap that cleanses, conditions, softens, and most importantly protects leather. 

In this method, the following things are necessary for you:

  • A couple of dry rugs or towels
  • Saddle soap
  • Water

Once you have all these things, it’s time to perform the task. 

Step 1: Grab the Tin of Saddle Soap

Grab the cleaning towel and soak it in water to slightly dampen it. Now rub the towel gently against the saddle soap to make a decent lather. A dime-sized amount of saddle soap is enough to do the job. 

Step 2: Rub Saddle Soap on Your Boots

Now gently rub saddle soap on the entire boot one after one. Make the saddle soap work by following step 1 until you’ve covered the entire boot with it.

Step 3: Wipe off Saddle Soap

Once you cover the boots with saddle soap, it’s time to leave your boots overnight to dry properly. 

Even after drying, some saddle soap residues may remain on the boots. To get rid of them, grab a dry towel and simply wipe off the boots. 

Guess what? You can spot the difference, don’t you? Well, now let your boots air dry before you wear them. 

Method 3: Using Leather Oil/Balm

Using leather oil or balm isn’t essential unless you want to make your boots shiny. 

Here’s what you need to give your boots extra shine:

  • Leather balm or oil
  • Dry towel or cotton ball
  • Soft-bristle brush

Once you gather all of them, it’s time to use them. Let’s see.

Step 1: Grab the leather Oil/Balm

Grab your favorite leather oil and cotton ball, and dip the cotton ball in leather oil. If you want to use leather balm, take a clean, dry towel and dab some leather balm on the corner of the towel. 

Step 2: Apply Leather Oil/Balm

If you’re set, use the soaked cotton ball to coat your entire boots. Make sure the leather oil covers your entire boots otherwise uneven finishes won’t look good. 

For leather balm, rub in small circles in your entire boots and obviously make sure you’re coating completely.

Step 3: Brush the Boots

Once you’re done, take a soft-bristled brush (horsehair preferable) and buff your boots. Brushing your boots helps you to remove the residues and polish the boots evenly.  

You won’t need to spend too much time behind this. Just a few swipes can create the magic. After brushing, see how your favorite pair of boots shine.   

Method 4: Using Shoe Cleaner

This is the last method to clean your boots. When you don’t have enough time and don’t want to put much effort into cleaning your boots, a shoe cleaner can do the job. Moreover, using this method is the best way to keep them clean regularly.

What you need:

  • A shoe cleaner
  • Cotton ball

This cleaning process is almost the same as applying leather oil to your boots. Hence, I’m not wasting your and my time showing the entire step-by-step process. 

All you need to do is grab a cotton ball or a dry, clean towel and dip it into the shoe cleaner. Using the towel, rub the boots to cover them properly with shoe cleaner. After that, brush the boots for a long-lasting shine.

How to Waterproof Clarks Desert Boots?

Clarks boots are fashionable, comfortable, and long-lasting, no doubt about that. However, you can make them even more functional and long-lasting by waterproofing them. 

Before we start, I want to reveal the truth first. You can’t really waterproof your boots. Yes, you heard me right. The crepe soles used in desert boots won’t allow you to waterproof them. 

Worry not, you can make them a little water-resistant and the result is satisfactory. Let me show you the procedures. 

Method 1: Applying Sno Seal

Sno Seal is a combination of beeswax and other oils that creates a protective layer on the leather surface of your boots. Sno Seal works to protect your boots against water. On top of that, it’s a great way to maintain the original appearance of boots and prolong their lifespan. 

However, the Sno Seal might make your boots slightly darker than their original appearance. I’d suggest you apply the solution to a less visible part of your boot to check how it looks. If the result is satisfactory, you can apply the Sno Seal all over your shoes.  

Before using Sno Seal, clean your boots completely. After that, apply Sno Seal all-around your boots. Dry the boots completely before wearing them.

To be honest, applying sno seal on a pair of boots is an easygoing task. Still, if you want to know more, check this out

Method 2: Using Waterproofing Spray

You can use waterproofing spray instead of Sno Seal to make your boots water-resistant. Waterproofing sprays are affordable, require less time to apply and most importantly, they work great to make your boots durable. 

However, before applying waterproofing spray, keep a couple of things in your mind. Firstly, these sprays contain harmful chemicals which means you have to handle them carefully. Another thing is to clean your boots completely before using the spray otherwise the stains will be stuck forever.

First, make sure that all stains and debris are removed from your boots. After that, spray the solution all-around your boots. Let them dry for a few minutes before applying another coat. 

You need to apply 4 coatings for the best result. Lastly, leave your boots in a well-ventilated area to dry them properly. However, the drying period and required amount of coating depends on the brand. See the label to know the exact drying period and required numbers of coating.  

How to Care for Clarks Desert Boots?

When you buy a pair of Clarks Desert boots, you should ensure that you can take care of them well. Although these boots last long, still a little bit of care and maintenance make them even better. Here’s a list of do’s and don’ts to take care of your boots:

1. Clean Your Boots Whenever You Can

Clean your boots at least once a week to maintain their appearance. Just brushing off once a week is fine. Moreover, you should clean them thoroughly once a month.

2. Brush Gently

Don’t brush your boots rigorously, it’ll damage your boots (especially the suede ones)

3. Say No to Regular Soaps

Never use soaps to clean your boots as soaps tend to ruin your favorite pair. Instead, use saddle soap (only on Beeswax leather boots) to clean your boots because that’s what they’re supposed to do.

4. Don’t Forget to Clean the Laces

When you clean your boots, don’t forget to clean the laces. Dirty laces look really weird with the polished boots. Use a mild detergent to wash off the laces.

5. Test the Solution Before Applying

Before applying any solution, test them in a less visible area. You may ruin your boots if the solution does not suit your boots.

6. Clean Before You Apply Waterproofing Spray

Clean your boots thoroughly, it’ll remove the stains and dirt. After that, apply the waterproofing spray otherwise dirt will be tapped into your boots forever. 

7. Make Cleaning a Priority

If your boots get dirty don’t wait to clean them off. As time goes on, more dirt will build up and make the situation worse.

8. Avoid Damp Conditions

Always make sure your boots don’t get wet since damp conditions and leather are not for each other.

Moreover, Don’t expose your boots to high heat while you’re drying them

Final Thoughts

Throughout this article, I’ve tried to show you how to clean Clarks desert boots. If you go through this, you’ll see the comprehensive process to clean your favorite pair of boots. I showed every possible method and step-by-step procedure to work them out. 

On top of that, this article will help you to clean your boots properly and obviously without ruining them. So, don’t waste your time because the dirt and stains are waiting to make a permanent home on your boots. Order the accessories you need and start to clean your boots as soon as you can.

I’m eagerly waiting to know whether these methods can help you or not. For now, I’m signing off. Have a good day!

Richard Nelson

Richard is the Head of Content here at Bootpedia. From an early age, leather boots have been a passion for him. So, he thought why not share his knowledge with the rest of the world? 

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