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How to Waterproof Converse and Other Canvas Shoes

By Edited Feb 12, 2016 1 1

Converse shoes are a stylish and comfortable accessory that can be added to any wardrobe, regardless of gender and age.  The Converse website boasts a variety of shoes in different styles, textures, and colors.  You can even order shoes customized by you.  Also called Chuck Taylors or chucks, Converse shoes can last a long time with proper care.   However, canvas isn't a waterproof material.  Kids (or adults) that are in water often should waterproof their shoes themselves to ensure the shoes' durability.  Waterproofing canvas can be an easy task, but it may need to be repeated if shoes get dirty often. If you would like to make your chucks last longer by waterproofing them, there are a few things to keep in mind.


  1. Purchase a waterproofing product that is fluoropolymer based.  Fluoropolymer-based products work well on canvas.  Buy a spray-based product for easier application. If the spray pump gets clogged, unscrew the nozzle from the bottle and rinse it in hot water.  Waterproofing products will be cheaper if you purchase them online.
  2. Thoroughly clean your canvas shoes by washing them in the washer with a mild detergent.  Do not use bleach on your shoes if they are any other color than white. Allow them to air dry by placing them in a dry area.  If the weather allows, place them outside for the day.  Never put your Converse in the dryer.  It can cause the rubber to crack and break off.
  3. Move outdoors to waterproof your Converse.  Protect any belongings from overspray by moving or covering them.
  4. Spot test a small area of the canvas.  Allow the product to dry before spraying the entire shoe.  This will ensure you are satisfied with the appearance before spraying the whole shoe.
  5. Spray the shoes with the fluoropolymer-based product.  Hold the can 6 to 8 inches away from your shoes.  Do not oversaturate, but cover all areas of the canvas to ensure that shoes are completely waterproofed.
  6. Apply a second coat of the waterproofing spray once the first coat has dried.  Dry at least 4 hours or overnight for best results before wearing your shoes.

Your shoes should be waterproofed and ready to play in the puddles.  However, once your shoes become dirty and you decide they need to be washed again, keep in mind you will be washing off the waterproofing product as well.  Once you wash your shoes, the whole process will need to be repeated.



    Jan 4, 2013 11:27pm
    I didn't know you could do this. Interesting. You said: "This will ensure you are satisfied with the appearance ..." Does this mean it changes the appearance of the shoes? What does it look like?"
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