Help! I Used The Wrong Color Polish On My New Leather Shoes!!!!!!

Ok, in the Army we had black boots and I always used black shoe polish. Always black, nothing but black, black matched black.

Fast forward six years later I break the mold and instead of buying black shoes I buy some really nice cordovan colored shoes. Cordovan looks to be like a brownish red with more red than brown. I find some cordovan colored Kiwi shoe polish and think all is good, that is until today. I commence to spread polish on my shoes and let it dry. I start buffing the polish off but it is leaving black streaks of polish behind. Very noticeable black streaks of polish. Black streaks of polish that will not buff out. Now, the paste itself looks black but when spread on skin or a cloth it looks like a wine color. I don’t understand why it is leaving black streaks on the shoe.

Are my shoes ruined? Will I be able to remove all the polish when I strip them with saddle soap? Should I use a red polish next time are all the black streaks supposed to be there? Please tell me there is some hope for my shoes.

Try a little rubbing alcohol on toilet paper. Test a tiny section fo the shoe with a Q-tip dipped in alcohol to make sure it is removing polish and not the base leather dye. If this works use fresh paper and alcohol for every swipe and do not overwork one area.

If all else fails, you mught try Mr. Clean Magic Erasers. They’re for removing marks on walls, but I’ve used them to remove scuff marks on shoes. It leaves a bit of a chalky residue behind, so you’ll want to wipe them with a wet cloth afterward.

Hey, it’s worth a shot.

Most of my shoes are oxblood (which apparently turned darker and got renamed cordovan somewhere between my last tin of shoe polish and the new one I just bought).

Your problem is probably letting the polish dry completely before buffing it. In the past, when I’ve dumped a glop of the wrong colour polish on a shoe I’ve had success with windex-- or just applying fresh polish and buffing it right away.
You can also try ‘neutral’ polish.

Actually Barbarian is right. I missed the part about you saying you “let it dry” . I suppose different people have different shoe polishing methods, but I never, ever let the polish sit on my shoes and “dry” and I don’t know anyone who does. The usual procedure is to swirl the applicator brush gently around in the soft polish then dab it as evenly as possible over the shoe. Then immediatley (no “drying”) grap the big spreading brush and spead the polish all over the area to be polished. Then (no “drying”) grab a soft finishing cloth and buff to a high polish.