How to Waterproof, Protect and Clean Your Sheepskin Slippers

Sheepskin is a natural, durable fabric made to withstand the elements, which is why it is such a popular material for sheepskin slippers and other winter apparel. However, sheepskin is not naturally waterproof, and shearing garments can easily become soiled when worn outdoors. For this reason, it is extremely important to properly waterproof and protect the durability of your sheepskin slippers, in order to prevent long-lasting stains. Our sheepskin slippers at The Sheepherder are made to last, and we want to help our valued customers keep their sheepskin slippers looking as good as new for as long as possible. To that end, the following are six helpful tips to keep in mind when it comes to protecting, cleaning and caring for your genuine sheepskin slippers.

6 Tips for Cleaning/Protecting Your Sheepskin Slippers

  1. Whether your sheepskin slippers are made for outdoor wear or not, you’ll want to make sure you waterproof them as soon as possible, to protect the suede from water spotting and other stains that could soil the material. Rain and stain shields made especially for suede and leather are the best products for waterproofing your sheepskin slippers, and are specially formulated to resist water spotting and soiling. These products will help your sheepskin slippers remain dry without affecting the flexibility or breathability of the surface, and in the long run, will make your slippers easier to clean and care for.
  2. Most dry dirt on your sheepskin slippers can be removed using a soft brush. If you notice a light stain or spot on your sheepskin slippers, use a suede conditioner and/or cleaner right away to prevent the stain from setting. These products are designed to be used with sheepskin slippers and other shearling garments, and will remove most types of spotting.
  3. You’ll need to use a different product to clean the fluffy wool portion of your sheepskin slippers. The wool can be touched up with a solution of cold water and Woolite, but be sure to never let the solution soak through to the suede. When nearly dry, brush the wool to fluff it up again.
  4. If you get a grease stain on your sheepskin slippers, you can try applying a layer of cornstarch and letting it soak up the stain. Let the cornstarch sit for one or two days or longer, and then vacuum it up with a handheld vacuum or brush attachment on a large vacuum. Then use additional cleaning methods, if necessary.
  5. If you need to clean the suede portion of your sheepskin slippers, follow up, once they are dry, with a special suede sponge or brush made specifically for this purpose, brushing in one direction to raise the nap. Never use a regular sponge or rag when cleaning your sheepskin slippers, or you may risk damaging the material, causing spots or tearing.
  6. Genuine sheepskin slippers are naturally water resistant, but they are not waterproof. It will take a good bit of moisture to penetrate through the skin of your slippers, but should your sheepskin slippers become overly wet, allow them to dry slowly, out of direct heat and sunlight, then remove individual water spots with a suede brush or sponge. Stuff the slippers with paper towels to absorb moisture and help reshape them. If they are significantly stained or soiled, take them to a professional dry cleaner with experience handling suede, leather and/or sheepskin garments.

Keep Your Sheepskin Slippers Looking Good as New

Whether your Sheepherder purchase includes our traditional sheepskin slippers, shearling ankle boots, or Minnetonka moccasins, your first step after receiving your slippers should be to ensure they are properly waterproofed. Then, using these six tips for cleaning and caring for shearling garments, you can protect and maintain the appearance and durability of your sheepskin slippers, and continue to enjoy them for years to come!