How To Bronze Shoes: A Step-by-Step Guide

How To Bronze Shoes: A Step-by-Step Guide

Bronzing shoes is a great way to preserve them and give them a unique and eye-catching finish. Whether you want to bronze your favorite pair of sneakers, dress shoes, or baby shoes, the process is relatively simple and can be done at home with the right materials and techniques.

In this step-by-step guide, we'll walk you through the process of bronzing shoes, including the materials you'll need, tips for success, and common mistakes to avoid.

Things You’ll Need

Before we start, gathering all the materials you'll need for the process is important. Here's what you'll need:

How to Bronze Your Shoes

Now that you gathered all the materials you need, you can start the process; however, bronzing your shoes is not just about applying bronze paint to the surface of your shoes. It requires some preparation and attention to detail to ensure the finish is even and long-lasting.

Here's a step-by-step guide to help you through the process:

Step 1: Prep your workspace

Prep your workspace

You want to avoid accidentally getting paint on anything else, so cover your workspace with newspaper or a drop cloth. This will protect your floors or table from any accidental spills.

Step 2: Clean your shoes

Clean your shoes

Before you start painting, make sure your shoes are clean and dry. You can use a damp cloth to wipe them down and remove any dirt or debris. This will help the paint adhere better to the surface of the shoe.

Step 3: Prepare Your Shoes

Prepare Your Shoes

Use a deglazer to remove any existing finish or coatings on the shoes to help the bronze paint adhere better and ensure a smooth finish. Simply apply the deglazer to a cloth and rub it over the entire surface of the shoes.

Step 4: Prepare Bronze Paint

Prepare Bronze Paint

Next, you'll need to prepare your bronze paint. Make sure you choose a paint suitable for use on shoes and designed to stick to leather or synthetic materials. Give the paint a good stir to make sure it's well-mixed.

Step 5: Apply the Bronze Paint

Apply the Bronze Paint

Once you've prepared your shoes, it's time to apply the bronze paint. When painting the shoes, it's best to work in small sections and apply several thin layers of paint. This will help the paint to dry evenly and reduce the risk of drips or smudging.

Use a small paintbrush or sponge to apply the paint, making sure to work it into any creases or seams in the shoes. Allow each layer to dry completely before applying the next.

Step 6: Let the Shoes Dry

Let the Shoes Dry

After you've applied the bronze paint, it's essential to let the shoes dry completely. This can take anywhere from a few hours to overnight, depending on the temperature and humidity in your environment.

You can use a fan or hairdryer in a low-heat setting to speed up drying. Just be careful not to overheat the shoes, as this can cause the bronze paint to bubble or crack.

Step 7: Apply a Second Coat

Apply a Second Coat

Once the first coat of liquid bronze has dried, apply a second coat to help ensure that the finish is even and uniform.

Follow the same process as in Step 3, applying the bronze paint with a paintbrush and covering the entire surface of the shoes. Let the second coat dry completely before moving on to the next step.

Pro Tip: The number of coats you apply will depend on the look you want to achieve, but it's essential to ensure even coverage to create a beautiful and lasting finish.

Final Step: Apply Finisher

Apply Finisher

Once you've painted the shoes to your satisfaction, you can apply a finisher to protect the paint and give it a glossy or matte finish. Simply follow the instructions on the finisher product and apply it evenly over the entire surface of the shoes. Allow it to dry completely before wearing the shoes.

Check out the video below for those who want to see the process in action.

Tips for Successful Shoe Bronzing

Tips for Successful Shoe Bronzing

Although shoe bronzing may not seem daunting, there are several vital steps to ensure a successful outcome. Here are some of the tips to ensure excellent results:

  • Decide What Shoes to Paint With Bronze

Remember that bronze paint is best used in leather shoes. However, if you decide to paint your canvas shoes, you must be ready for the outcome, whether it turns out bad or perfect. In short, choose a shoe that you can afford to lose when the process messes up. 

  • Use High-Quality Materials

Another tip is to use high-quality bronze paint. This will help to ensure a long-lasting and durable finish. Don't skimp on the materials, as this can lead to a subpar result.

  • Work in a Well-Ventilated Area

When working with bronze paint, working in a well-ventilated area is important to avoid harsh odor. Open a window or use a fan to circulate fresh air. But if you can find a no harsh odor bronze paint, it is much better as you don't have to wear any protective mask making you more comfortable when bronzing.

  • Take Your Time

The process of bronzing shoes can take some time, so be patient and don't rush through the steps. Each coat of liquid bronze paint must dry completely before moving on to the next step. Rushing can cause the finish to be uneven or the bronze paint to peel off.

  • Practice on a Test Surface

If you're new to bronzing shoes, practicing on a test surface can be helpful before applying the bronzed finish to your shoes. This can help you understand the process and correctly apply the bronze paint.

Common Mistakes When Bronzing Shoes

  • Applying Too Much Bronze Paint: This can lead to an uneven or clumpy finish. Be sure to apply a thin, even coat across the entire surface of the shoes.
  • Using Low-Quality Materials: Low-quality bronze paint can lead to a subpar result that may not last. Be sure to use high-quality materials for the best results.
  • Not Using Deglazer: Skipping the deglazing step can cause the bronze paint to not adhere properly to the surface of the shoes.
  • Not Letting the Shoes Dry Completely: Each coat of bronze paint must dry completely before moving on to the next step. Skipping this step can cause the finish to be uneven or cause the bronze paint to peel off.

Bronzed Shoes Aftercare Tips

After bronzing your shoes, it is essential to take proper care of them to ensure that the bronze coating lasts as long as possible. Here are some aftercare tips for your newly bronzed shoes:

  1. Allow the shoes to dry completely: After painting them with bronze paint and applying a finisher, make sure the shoes are completely dry before wearing them. This will ensure the finish is fully set and won't smudge or come off.
  2. Store the shoes properly: When you're not wearing them, store them in a cool, dry place. Avoid exposing the shoes to direct sunlight or extreme temperatures, as this can cause the paint to fade or crack.
  3. Avoid getting the shoes wet: Water can damage the bronze coating on your shoes, so it's best to avoid wearing them in wet conditions or exposing them to water. If the shoes do get wet, make sure to dry them off thoroughly with a soft cloth.
  4. Clean the shoes gently: To keep your bronzed shoes looking their best, it's important to clean them regularly. However, you'll want to avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials that could damage the paint. Instead, gently wipe away dirt or debris using a soft cloth or brush.
  5. Touch up the paint as needed: Over time, the bronze coating on your shoes may wear away in certain areas. To keep them looking their best, you can touch up the paint using a small paintbrush and the same bronze paint you used originally.

By following these simple aftercare tips, you can help to ensure that your bronzed shoes look great for as long as possible. So go ahead and show off your new, unique footwear.

Bronzing Shoe FAQ

How long does the bronze coating last on shoes?

The durability of the bronze coating depends on the quality of the materials used and the amount of wear and tear the shoe experience. Typically, the layer can last several months to a year with proper care.

Can I bronze any type of shoe material?

Bronzing works best on leather shoes because leather is a natural material with pores and texture, allowing the bronze paint to adhere to it effectively. However, you can also try it on materials such as suede or canvas.

Can I apply bronze to the entire shoe or only certain parts?

You can apply bronze to any part of the shoe you desire. However, starting with small areas such as the toe or heel is recommended.


Bronzing shoes are a great way to give your shoes a unique and eye-catching finish. With the right materials and techniques, the process is relatively simple and can be done at home. Follow each step carefully, take your time, and use high-quality materials for the best results.

With a little bit of practice, you'll be able to create a beautiful, long-lasting finish that will make your shoes stand out from the crowd.

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