Shoes play an important role in our overall personality.
We feel confident when our dress shoes are elegant, good-looking, and classy.
But the problem comes with squeaking. Sometimes new leather shoes make squeaky noises. It is embarrassing and annoying. We feel uncomfortable in front of everyone when walking.
You can avoid this problem if you know how to stop dress shoes from squeaking.
There are multiple processes to get rid of this problem. You can wear socks, use lubricant, talcum powder, dry sheet, and others for insole problems. Use saddle soap for shoelace problems. Sandpaper, adhesive, dryer sheet, and super glue can work fine for outsole squeaky problems.
Dry the shoes, use baby powder or talcum powder or use a dryer to solve the water damage problem. You can even solve the heel broken problem to solve the noise problem.
What Are the Causes of Dress Shoes Squeaking?
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It becomes easier to solve the problem if you know why leather shoes squeak. Here are the main causes of dress shoes squeaking.
Friction Between the Leather and Sole
One of the main reasons for shoe squeaking is friction between the leather and sole. It happens when the dry leather rubs against the sole or the ground.
New Leather Shoes
A new leather shoe is another common reason for squeaking. News shoes do not have the leather broken properly. This new leather also has a dry surface that causes more squeaking.
You will find some surfaces where leather shoes make more squeaking. Tiles, marble, floors, slate, or concrete are harder and slippery. The sole rubs against them and creates noise.
Leather Shoe Design
The design of the shoes plays a vital role in making some noises while walking. For example, some shoes come with a wooden splint design located between the arches of the foot.
Insufficient or Too Tight Stitches
The tongue and leather upper are attached with stitching. When the stitching is insufficient, the tongue and leather upper make an unnecessary movement. It creates additional friction and thus makes noise.
Too tight stitches also create problems. When the stitching is too tight, there is no space left for movement. It causes the leathers to rub together and creates unnecessary squeaking.
Thick Leather Construction
Thick leather construction leads to excessive stretching and movement inside your shoes. It creates friction noises when walking.
Many shoes now come with rubber soles for better traction and comfort. But rubber soles may create more friction against the surface and leather construction and thus create noise.
Maybe none of the above reasons are responsible for squeaking. You may experience this unwanted noise when walking in wet conditions. Wet leaves, rainwater, mud, and snow can be the causes of this problem.
You may have old shoes with wear and tear. This can be a reason for squeaking noise while walking since wear and tear may cause unnecessary friction.
Wearing Shoes Barefoot
Some people have this habit of wearing shoes barefoot. Your skin rubs against the leather when you do so, leading to squeaking noise.
Unfit shoes are even responsible for noises. When your shoes do not fit well, there will be some friction between your feet and shoes. This will create squeaking.
For lady’s shoes, the heel might come loose. Loose shoes create gaps that ultimately lead to bad noise.
Your shoelaces may be too loose. It will start squeaking once it starts rubbing against the tongue. The friction causes the noise.
18 Ways to Stop Dress Shoes from Squeaking
You know the reasons why your shoes make noises. Now let’s see how to stop leather shoes squeaking.
How to stop the noise for squeaky insole?
You need to take care of the insole when you have a problem with it. Check whether the insole is causing the problem and apply the methods below:
1. Use Talcum or Baby Powder
Moisture can grow up when the insole rubs against the shoes. Take a talcum or baby powder and apply it under the insole. Make sure you shake the powder before use. You may not have a removable insole. Try applying the powder around the insole in that case.
2. Wear Socks
Bare feet create friction with the insole or inner side of the shoes. Wearing socks can help you prevent the problem. Comfortable socks will stop the friction and stop the noise.
3. Try Dryer Sheet
Another great way to prevent friction is to use a dryer sheet. Simply fold a piece of a dryer sheet, sandwich it in the middle of the insole and show the bottom. You can also use a paper towel if a dryer sheet is unavailable. Remember that paper towels will not last long.
4. Lubricant Can Work as The Ultimate Solution
You can use lubricant if none of the above methods work. But remember that this method can stain your shoes and look messy. Simply take a cotton ball or cotton round and apply lubricant between the insole and shoe bottom. Try coconut oil or Vaseline.
5. Add Petroleum Jelly
Lubricant can make the shoes messy. You can simply add your regular petroleum jelly between the insole and shoe bottom. It helps the insole and bottom rub against each other more smoothly, reducing the noise.
What If the Problem Is with Shoelaces?
The shoelaces sometimes cause problems. It happens due to the friction against the shoe tongue. You can use saddle soap to get rid of this problem. Simply apply saddle soap or other leather conditioners on the shoelaces and tongue cover. It will reduce the friction and solve the problem.
How To Fix Squeaky Dress Shoe Problems When the Problem Is with The Outsole?
The squeaky problem happens most of the time for the outsole. Outsoles come in touch with the surface that makes the noise. If the problem is with the outsole, follow the methods below:
1. Use Sandpaper
Take a piece of 120-220 grit sandpaper and rub the outsole. It will rough the sole and improve traction. This will ultimately lead to less noise while walking. You will experience a less slippery outsole for this hack. Remember that this method will not work in the rubber outsole. It will work only in the natural and synthetic leather outsole.
2. Apply Adhesive
Adhesive can ensure better traction on the outsole and make your shoeless slick. You can use silicone spray to get the job done. WD-40 can be a good option as a silicone spray.
Follow the instruction of using silicone spray before using. Try to avoid it if you have suede or Nubuk shoes. Apply it if you experience the squeaky sound in the future.
3. Try Dryer Sheet for Rubbing
You cannot use sandpaper for rubber soles. But you can use a dryer sheet for rubber and all other types of soles. It also causes less damage to the shoes compared to sandpaper. Rub your shoes on the dryer sheet, and it will reduce the slickness of the outsole.
This will lessen the unwanted noise on wooden or tile floors. You can apply this method whenever you experience a problem.
4. Rubber Sole Spray
You will find some rubber sole sprays that can improve traction and reduce noise. Use some duct tape before purchasing the spray to check whether it works or not. If it works, rubber sole spray will also work. Do not buy it if duct tape does not work.
5. Use Super Glue
Sometimes the problem might be the detached outsole. When the outsole gets detached from the bottom of your shoes, a gap is created. The air inside the gap makes noises while walking or running on the surfaces.
You can use super glue or shoe glue to solve the problem. Apply the glue to the affected area and attach the outsole properly. Wait for at least 24 hours to dry the shoes and reuse them.
6. Solve Your Squeaky Heels
You may experience the problem due to loose or broken heels. See whether there is a gap created for loose heels or not. You can simply use superglue around the shoes to fill the gap and make the loosened heel tight. Follow the seam when applying it, and then hold it together for a minute or more.
Wait for at least an hour or less, depending on the glue for better attachment. You may see some unsightly glue marks on the shoes. If you are worried about that, it is better to visit your cobbler to hand over the responsibility to the professional.
How To Fix Squeaky Leather Dress Shoes When Water Damage causes it?
Your shoes may get damaged by the water, which can even cause squeaky noise. Rain, moisture, or fog can create water damage problems. Follow the methods below to get rid of those problems:
1. Let The Shoes Dry in Natural Light
The best way to solve this problem without damaging the shoes is to dry them in natural light. Some people use sunlight or artificial light to dry the shoes faster. It will damage your shoes a lot. Try to avoid that mistake.
Simply put the shoes in a clean place under natural light and wait to let them dry. It would be better to wipe the water or moisture down with a cloth. If you have removable insoles, remove them before wiping or drying. Flip the shoes down for even faster drying if the shoes are too wet.
2. Use Baby or Talcum Powder
Baby or talcum powder works great to absorb moisture, snow, or water. Magnesium, silicon, and oxygen are the primary ingredients of baby powder that work perfectly against water.
So how to stop dress shoes from squeaking using baby powder? Well, target the wet area first. Then loosen the laces, remove the insole, and apply the powder around the shoes. Do not leave any empty space. Sprinkle the powder to the bottom and lace holes.
Leave the shoes for one night to let them dry. Remember not to use any talcum powder consistent with any hazardous ingredients.
3. Use Dryer
This highly risky project is suitable for polyester, cotton, and canvas shoes. It will destroy your expensive dress shoes. You MUST apply this method to your leather shoes.
Take a mesh bag and put your dress shoes in it. Place the shoes inside the dryer and set an air-dry setting. Set the level to the lowest and dry for around 7-10 minutes. It will work like magic but might damage the shoes. Do not keep it for too long. It will cause more damage than good.
What If the Problem Is with The Floors?
Sometimes the problem is with the floors. Leather shoes make more noises on tiles, marble, floors, and other surfaces. Then how to stop shoes squeaking on the floor? The only way to solve the problem is to wear sneakers or use carpets on the floors.
What Can You Do for Thinner Leather?
The problem can be for the thinner leather construction. You should use additional padding to lessen the noise. It will also help you reduce the chance of breaking down quickly. This also reduces the wear and tear of your leather shoes.
How To Solve the Stitches Problem?
Too tight or too loose stitches may also cause the squeaky problem. The best way to solve the problem is to loosen the stitches if they are too tight or add additional stitches if they are too loose.
Frequently Asked Questions
Got more questions in mind? Go through the section below to get the right answer to your questions.
How to stop shoes from squeaking on linoleum?
You need to identify whether the sound is from the shoes or floors. If the problem is with the linoleum, you have nothing in your hand but to remove it. You can use oil, lubricant, or Vaseline if the problem is with the insole.
Try using a dry sheet, sandpaper, or outsole spray to eliminate the outsole noise problems. You can also dry your shoes with natural light, dryer, or talcum powder to solve wet problems to prevent noise.
Should you use chemicals on the shoe?
Not at all. You need to know whether there are any harmful ingredients in the chemical before applying it. Otherwise, it may damage the shoes.
Walking with a squeaky sound is annoying. It feels like everyone is looking at me and feeling embarrassed for me. You may even draw some unwanted attention as well. That is why it is important to know how to stop dress shoes from squeaking.
The processes are simple, and you can do them easily. Identify the problems causing the squeaking noise and try to solve the problem. Find out where the problems lie and take action accordingly. If you are not confident enough handling the problem, go to the cobbler and let the professional handle the matter.
Try to avoid any stupidity since it can damage your valuable shoes. Always act smartly to find and solve the problem following the guide above.