Like a forestry worker’s saw or a tiler’s trowel, your work shoes are an essential part of your everyday working life. And like your tools, your shoes should be treated properly too. It’s the only way to ensure they function properly and protect you in your work or as long as you need them. Without proper care, a saw quickly goes blunt; in the same way, your shoes can lose their breathability or become brittle withou proper attention. This can quickly turn from an annoyance to a real danger. Inadequate care or simple carelessness can quickly cause you to destroy certain features of your shoes that are supposed to protect you.

Unfortunately, we hear of many defects resulting from inadequate or improper care, or because shoes are not used as intended - sadly, we cannot accept returns of such shoes. In line with our motto, “enjoy work”, we want to provide you with tips for optimum shoe care so that you can enjoy a safe pair of shoes from engelbert strauss for as long as possible.


For many people, shoe care primarily means: scrubbing. And they’re not wrong, but that’s just one element. Shoe care can be active and passive. And passive shoe care begins when you choose your shoes: They have to fit well. Unlike trainers, safety shoes do not wear in over time. This can lead to additional stresses on the shoe in the wrong places and can even affect your gait - it’s also not good for your feet and can put you off wearing the shoes altogether. But shoes don't just need to suit your feet, they need to suit your work too. So check carefully to find out which shoes are best suited to your job. If you often work on your knees, your shoes should have toecaps.

Different surfaces require different qualities of soles and the level of safety required also plays an important role. With our intuitive shoe filter, you can compile a personal selection of shoes with the exact features that you require. Your new work shoes should feel good when you first try them on and be well suited to your field of work because, ideally, you will wear them every day for many months or even years of work. It might sound trivial, but how you put your safety shoes on also matters. Our tip is to use a shoehorn to avoid wearing out the heel area unnecessarily.

But there’s much more to passive shoe care. Professional work shoes have to take a lot of strain, so sometimes they need a little break. Because although leather shoes absorb moisture very well, they need up to 24 hours to release it again. For this reason we recommend using two different pairs. This allows one pair to rest before they are put to work, extending the life span of both.

Even the toughest
shoes experience
wear and tear.
But without
proper care, this
is even faster.

Work shoes
must first and
foremost be

Ideally, use
2 pairs of shoes
to extend the
life span of
both pairs.


Your work shoes are a practical part of your life assurance. Improper use, care and handling can have fatal consequences and can destroy the shoes. We would like to show you a few concrete examples which illustrate improper handling particularly well. We want to highlight three mistakes, which we often hear of, separately:


Work shoes do not belong in the washing machine! This can destroy the outer materials and safety features.


The components of our shoes are perfectly matched. Do not use any foreign parts such as insoles and do not make any alterations to the shoe. ESD shoes, for example, quickly lose their protective properties if unsuitable insoles are used! If you wish to make changes to your shoes, you should speak to a specialist.


It’s a simple formula: clean workspace = clean shoes. Check to see whether you can keep your immediate workspace clean and free from additional dangers. If, for example, you are always standing in oil or other chemical fluids, the soles will become damaged. With gratings, you can not only make your workspace safer but also increase the life span of your shoes.

Check your shoes
for defects before
each use!

What material are your shoes?


Dirty work shoes are not just unsightly, the surface
soiling also negatively impacts upon the shoes’
breathability. It can even clog the functional
membrane. And the less breathable the shoes,
the more perspiration and moisture remain inside.
It’s very simple: Thick dirt and dust should be
removed from leather shoes with a brush, a little
lukewarm water and neutral soap if required.
Scrub with long, even strokes without applying
unnecessary pressure. Water and snow streaks
should be tackled immediately, while the shoe is
still damp.

The easy way:

With a professional shoe cleaner
such as our Extreme Shoe Cleaner,
brushing becomes a simple habit.

Remove thick
dirt with a brush
warm water and
a neutral soap.


Many of our work and safety shoes are equipped with a waterproof but extremely breathable dryplexx® membrane. To ensure this membrane maintains its practical properties in the long-term, the shoes require not just regular cleaning but regular waterproofing. We recommend you waterproof your shoes prior to first use and then regularly depending on wear and cleaning. As a rough rule of thumb, the shoes should be retreated after becoming wet on 2-3 occasions. Ensure that the waterproofing spray you use is suitable for the dryplexx® membrane and spray from a distance of 20-30 cm. It is important that the outer material becomes moist but not wet. Note: Of course, you can also waterproof shoes that do not have a waterproof membrane. This does not make them waterproof but allows moisture to drip off the outer material better.

No difference between:

Waterproof the
shoes before
first use and
after becoming
wet 2-3 times.
Not too wet!


Our e.s. Impregnation spray 3 in 1 cleans, cares for and waterproofs with its 3-in-1 formula for optimum all-round protection.

What material are your shoes?


As well as cleaning and waterproofing, your leather work shoes also need a beauty treatment from time to time. With the e.s. leather wax or the e.s. high shine shoe cream from our shoe care range, you can give the material back its natural flexibility, durability and shine. They don’t just look shiny, they're functional too: Dirt has a harder time sticking to treated shoes.

Shoe cream

With natural raw ingredients such as carnauba wax and turpentine oil, the e.s. shoe cream combines care and shine.

With the e.s.
leather wax

you can keep your leather supple. It quickly penetrates the leather, making it supple and waterproof.

Leather wax not
only creates shine,
it also prevents dirt
from sticking.


When shoes get damp from cleaning or rain, they must be dried out properly. You should never try to dry shoes in the sun or using a heat source. This can make leather quickly turn hard and brittle. Instead, loosen the tongue and the laces, remove the insole and stuff the shoe with newspaper. Moisture will disperse in a well-aired space at room temperature. A quicker alternative is a special shoe drier.

No difference between:

Loosen the tongue
and laces, stuff
with newspaper
and carefully
dry in the air.
Never in the sun!

Simply insert and dry in less than 2 hours - with the Compact Shoe Drier.


Shoe care is important even when you’re not using your work shoes for a longer period of time. In the summer, you should store your winter shoes properly. A plastic bag is unsuitable because it provides the perfect conditions for mould to form. Instead, place your shoes in a box or shoe bag. You can also store your shoes on a shoe tree which maintains their natural shape and - particularly the luxury cedar wood version - wicks away moisture. The shoes then spend the season in the cupboard in the correct packaging.

No difference between:

Store your
shoe in a box.
A shoe tree will
maintain the shape.


It’s almost unavoidable: Shoes absorb odours and smell. Especially if they are worn regularly and exertion.They need to be in the fresh air, never in the washing machine! You can also use special sprays, such as the e.s. Shoe deo spray, which gives your work shoes a fresh scent. This is also part of caring for your shoes and ensures that you can enjoy your work and safety shoes for longer.

No difference between:

The right material

Your socks are also important, because even the best membrane is no use if your socks aren’t breathable.

View Function socks

Dispersing odours in the air

If you don’t have time to air your shoes, the reliable e.s. Shoe deo spray can help with all shoe types.

Never put shoes in the
washing machine to get
rid of unpleasant odours!
Use fresh air and shoe deo spray.


Be it a cleaning spray, waterproofing spray, leather wax or brush: Our shoe care range is perfectly adapted to the work and safety shoes from engelbert strauss.

Do you have further questions or need
tips for caring properly for your work shoes?
Get in touch with us, we can
be reached at any time!

0 60 50 / 97 10 12

It’s quick and easy with
our contact form!




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