Spray Painting Shoes: Pros, Cons and Tips

Customizing your clothes, accessories, and shoes is a great way to stand out from the crowd or breathe new life into old favorites. From tie-dying to patches, embroidery to patterned shoelaces, the options are endless. But spray painting shoes has to be one of the best techniques for creating unique footwear. 

Although the idea of letting loose on your sneakers with a can of spray paint can seem daunting, there are plenty of reasons to try it out. Keep reading to find out all the pros and cons involved, as well as our top tips on how to spray paint shoes. 

The Pros of Spray Painting Shoes

Not sure whether painting your shoes is the right choice for you? Let's take a look at some of the benefits:

Quick and Efficient Customization Method

One of the biggest pros of shoe spray painting is that it's fast and effective. Within minutes you can turn plain white sneakers into multicolored masterpieces or boring black shoes into fancy gold footwear. 

Variety of Colors

You can now find footwear in every color under the sun. Despite this, trying to find both the style and the exact color you want isn't always possible. 

Spray painting your shoes allows you to overcome this problem. All it takes is the right color shoe paint, and you can convert your preferred style into your dream shoes! 

Unique Patterns and Designs

The beauty of DIY shoes is that they don't have to be a solid color. Want pink and green star print sneakers? No problem! Or how about a rainbow ombre effect? Done! With the right shoe paint colors and a little imagination, anything is possible. 

Hides Imperfections

One last and often overlooked advantage of spray painting your shoes is how this method is great for hiding imperfections. If these tips for removing scuffs from shoes don't work, spray paint will make those marks disappear in no time!

The Cons of Spray Painting Shoes

While there are a lot of convincing reasons to spray paint shoes, there are some cons to consider too: 

Paint Cracking Over Time

Shoes move and flex with every step you take. This can make the spray paint covering their surface susceptible to cracking over time. While this issue is easy to fix by spraying more color on top, it is something to bear in mind. 

Needing Specific Shoe Paint

This customization method is fast and full of possibilities, but can you spray paint shoes with any kind of paint? In short, no.

While most all-purpose, oil-based enamel spray paints work on shoes, some are better than others. Plus, you'll need to check that the spray paint you choose is compatible with the material you're spraying. 

5 Tips for Spray Painting Shoes

Taking those pros and cons into account, here are some failsafe tips for successful shoe spray painting: 

1. Select the Right Spray Paint

For the best results, it's vital to select the right spray paint for your shoes. Some of the best brands include Krylon, Rust-Oleum, and Moneysworth & Best. Although, you should always check online reviews and product specifics before you buy. 

2. Practice Beforehand

Some spray painting techniques come with a learning curve. To ensure you're up to the challenge of customizing your shoes, practice spray painting on paper first. These practice runs will give you a chance to test your stencils, painter's tape, and any other materials as well as the paint itself. 

3. Prep Your Shoes

These sneaker refresh wipes are good for quick cleaning. But to ensure even paint coverage, you'll need to scrub your shoes and leave them to dry before spray painting them. Next, cover any areas you don't want spray painted with painter's tape, such as the tongue and any logos.

4. Apply Several Coats

Hold the spray paint can 10 to 12 inches away from your shoes and spray paint them using a light, even touch. You'll then need to let the paint dry between coats to reduce the chances of cracking. 

After applying your final coat, leave your shoes to dry again before removing the painter's tape. Depending on the outcome and your design, you may then need to apply more spray paint. 

5. Seal with a Protective Finish

Once you're happy with your design and the spray paint is completely dry, it's time to seal your shoes with a protective finish. This final step locks in your design by increasing the durability of the paint. 

Additional Ways to Customize Your Shoes

Whether you go all-out with your spray painting or keep it simple, there are other ways to customize your footwear for an even more unique look:

No-Tie Shoelaces

Spray painting your shoes a vibrant new shade can leave your old shoelaces looking a little dull, to say the least. One way to ensure that your laces don't let your style down is by swapping them for uLace no-tie shoelaces.  

As well as improving the functionality of your shoes, uLace no-tie shoelaces give your shoes a sleek and attractive upgrade. And, with so many colors to choose from, you can match them with your new shoe shade or go for a completely contrasting look--the choice is yours! 

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Lace Buddies 

Add even more personality to your spray-painted footwear with lace buddies! These clip onto shoelaces with ease and come in a range of colors and designs for the ultimate in customization. 

Metal Monograms 

For a more grown-up take on shoelace personalization, these metal monograms are ideal. Available in three metal tones, the right combination of letters and emojis will make your newly spray-painted shoes shine even more!

Your Guide to Spray Painting Shoes

Spray painting shoes is one of the fastest and most creative ways to customize your footwear. 

While there are some cons to bear in mind, following our tips should make it a lot easier to achieve the design you want. Then, for the perfect finishing touch, add uLace no-tie shoelaces and you're good to go!

For more information on all our products, contact us here at uLace today.