How to Clean Shearling Slippers

As winter slowly recedes and spring begins to tease us with glimpses of warmer weather, I find myself turning over my closet and assessing what survived the season. Among my cold weather staples are my trusty shearling slippers, and cozy companions that saw me through many a blustery day or blizzard movie marathon.

How to Clean Shearling Slippers

But after months of constant wear tracking snow and slush through the house, these moccasins have seen better days. The plush shearling lining that once felt so luxuriously soft now resembles a dirty gym sock. It’s time to give my slippers the deep clean they need to be restored to fluffy, fresh glory and be ready for next season. In this post, I’ll share my simple process for how to clean shearling slippers and revive them so they’re like new again.

Why Clean Your Shearling Slippers?

Shearling slippers are a popular choice for winter footwear because of their warmth, softness, and durability. The soft lambskin or sheepskin that makes up the lining is not only comfortable but also helps insulate your feet against cold temperatures.

However, with constant use comes inevitable buildup from dirt, sweat, and other grime. Not only can this make your slippers feel less pleasant to wear, but it can also affect their performance by reducing their insulating properties. Regular cleaning of your shearling slippers will keep them looking good, feeling cozy, and functioning optimally.

Tools and Materials You Will Need to Clean Shearling Slippers

  1. Soft-bristled brush or comb
  2. Mild detergent or specialized shearling cleaner
  3. Clean cloth or sponge
  4. Warm water
  5. White vinegar (optional)
  6. Baking soda (optional)

Step-by-step Guidelines on How to Clean Shearling Slippers

Step 1: Remove Excess Dirt and Debris

Before you begin cleaning your shearling slippers, take a few moments to brush or comb off any excess dirt or debris that may be adhered to the surface. This can help avoid rubbing these particles deeper into the lining during the cleaning process. Removing larger particles of dirt and debris also makes it easier for the cleaning solution to penetrate deeper into the wool fibers.

Comb Off Any Excess Dirt or Debris

Step 2: Prepare Your Cleaning Solution

For light stains, a mild detergent diluted in warm water will suffice. You can use a specialized shearling cleaner if your slippers are heavily soiled or stained. Alternatively, you can mix equal parts of white vinegar and warm water to create a natural cleaning solution. You can also sprinkle some baking soda on the stains for extra cleaning power. Preparing the right cleaning solution is essential to ensure that you don’t damage the delicate shearling fibers.

Step 3: Spot Clean Stains

Using a clean cloth or sponge, apply your chosen cleaning solution to any visible stains on the shearling lining. Gently rub in a circular motion until the stain starts to lift. Be sure not to saturate the shearling with too much water, as this can cause damage. If the stains are particularly stubborn, let the cleaning solution sit for a few minutes before gently rubbing again. This will give the solution more time to break down the stain.

Using a Clean Cloth or Sponge

Step 4: Clean the Entire Shearling Lining

Once you’ve spot-cleaned any visible stains, use your cleaning solution and cloth or sponge to clean the entire shearling lining. Again, make sure to use gentle circular motions and avoid oversaturating the slippers with water. This step will help eliminate any hidden dirt and oils that have built up over time. Cleaning the entire lining will ensure that your slippers are as fresh and clean as possible.

Step 5: Rinse and Dry Your Slippers

After you’ve cleaned the entire shearling lining, gently rinse your slippers with clean, warm water. Make sure to remove all of the soap or cleaner residue completely. To dry, stuff the insides of your slippers with dry paper towels or white cloths. Avoid using colored materials as the dye may transfer onto your slippers. Allow the slippers to air dry away from direct heat sources, such as radiators or hairdryers.

Following these simple steps will help ensure that your shearling slippers are clean, soft, and ready for the next winter season. With proper care and regular cleaning, you can extend the life of your favorite cozy footwear. So don’t let dirty shearling get in the way of enjoying warmth and comfort – give your slippers some TLC today! 

Additional Tips and Tricks to Clean Shearling Slippers

  1. If you are short on time, consider using a soft cloth dampened with warm water and a mild detergent to wipe the slippers clean. This method will not be as effective as the others, but it is a quick fix when you need your slippers cleaned in a pinch.
  2. For stubborn stains or dirt buildup, try using a suede brush to gently scrub the affected area. Be sure to brush in the direction of the fur to prevent damage.
  3. To eliminate any unwanted odors, sprinkle baking soda on the inside of your slippers and let it sit for a few hours before shaking or vacuuming it out.
  4. If you have a pair of shearling slippers with leather soles, use a damp cloth to clean them, and then apply a small amount of leather conditioner to keep them looking new.
  5. To prevent your shearling slippers from getting dirty in the first place, wear socks or use footpowder to absorb any sweat and oils.
  6. If you accidentally spill something on your shearling slippers, do not panic. Blot the excess liquid with a clean cloth and then follow the appropriate cleaning method mentioned earlier.
  7. When storing your shearling slippers, make sure they are completely dry to avoid any mold or mildew growth. Stuff them with newspaper or a shoe tree to help maintain their shape and absorb any moisture.
  8. If your shearling slippers get wet, do not place them near a heat source to dry as it can cause the leather to crack or shrink. Instead, stuff them with newspaper and let them air dry at room temperature.
  9. Regularly brushing your shearling slippers with a suede brush will help maintain their appearance and keep the fur soft and fluffy.
Use Footpowder to Absorb

Following these tips and tricks will not only help keep your shearling slippers clean, but it will also extend their lifespan. With proper care, your slippers will continue to provide warmth and comfort for many winters to come. Happy cleaning!

Things You Should Consider to Clean Shearling Slippers

  1. The first thing to consider when cleaning shearling slippers is the type of material used in making them. Shearling is usually made from sheepskin, which is a soft and delicate material that requires special care.
  2. Before starting the cleaning process, it’s best to read the manufacturer’s instructions. The manufacturer will provide specific recommendations on how to clean their shearling slippers without damaging them.
  3. Gather all the necessary materials for cleaning the shearling slippers. This includes a soft-bristled brush, mild detergent or soap, lukewarm water, and a clean towel.
  4. Cleaning shearling slippers should be done by hand rather than using a washing machine. The agitation in the machine can damage the delicate material of the shearling.
  5. Start by brushing off any dirt or debris from the surface of the slippers using a soft-bristled brush. Make sure to brush in the direction of the fur to avoid damaging it.
  6. Mix a small amount of mild detergent or soap with lukewarm water in a clean bucket or sink. Avoid using hot water as it can cause shrinkage and damage the shearling.
  7. Submerge the slippers in the soapy water and gently swish them around, making sure to clean both the inside and outside of the slippers. Use a soft cloth or sponge to clean any stubborn stains.
  8. Once the slippers are clean, rinse them thoroughly with lukewarm water until all soap residue is removed. Then, gently squeeze out excess water without twisting or wringing the shearling.
  9. Place the slippers on a clean towel and roll it up to absorb any remaining water. Avoid using heat sources to dry the slippers as it can cause them to shrink or harden.
  10. Leave the slippers to air dry in a well-ventilated area, away from direct sunlight or heat. It may take a day or two for the shearling slippers to completely dry.
Using a Washing Machine

Following these considerations will help you properly clean your shearling slippers and extend their lifespan. It’s important to regularly clean and care for your shearling slippers to maintain their softness and keep them looking like new. Remember to always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and avoid using harsh chemicals or heat sources when cleaning. With proper care, your shearling slippers will continue to provide comfort and warmth for years to come. So go ahead, slip them on, and enjoy cozy feet all year round! 


In conclusion, taking proper care of your shearling slippers is essential for not only preserving their quality and lifespan but also for maintaining the health of your feet. By following these simple steps on how to clean shearling slippers, you can keep them looking and feeling like new for years to come. Remember to first brush off any excess dirt or debris, spot clean any stains using a gentle soap and water solution, and finally, air dry them in a well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight or heat.

Additionally, regularly fluffing the shearling lining and storing them properly when not in use will ensure their soft and cozy texture is never compromised. Don’t let dirty and worn-out slippers be the reason for discomfort or embarrassment – take the time to properly clean them now! Trust us, your feet (and those snuggly slippers) will thank you. Happy cleaning!

Photo of author

Matt Clark

Hi, this is Matt, and I am a leathercraft hobbyist. I have been working with leather for quite a bit of time. When I was a teenager, my father taught me the basics of leathercraft. Along the way I have learned a lot of things about leather work leather items, restoring leather, and creating leather accessories. I started this blog to share my knowledge of leatherworking with others and help people learn about this amazing craft. I also wanted to create a community of like-minded people who could share ideas and support each other in their leatherworking journey.

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