dennymayo asked: More important when shining shoes in your opinion - technique or materials (wax, creme, etc.) used? Recently have bought a few mid-range pairs of shoes, wondering how whether time or money is more important.
Love what you do.
I’d say a combination of both. I have heard that some people get a great shine with Kiwi, while I’ve only ever been able to achieve anything good with a beeswax based polish, like Saphir. I also find the quality of the leather makes a difference - corrected grain, the type you’d find on Church or sometimes Loake, is very hard to get a polish on because the leather is so heavily treated, while a very high end shoe tends to be lasted much longer, stretching the leather and making the pores more shallow, so getting a high shine there is very easy. Without doubt, the most shine friendly shoes I’ve polished have been bespoke.
But more than anything, you should enjoy the process. I learnt to polish shoes with a friend who liked to sit around drinking tea and talking all afternoon, so polishing shoes became a good excuse to do that. It should be something you can relax while doing, don’t take it too seriously. Once you get a great shine, inevitably someone will step on your toes, or you’ll kick a chair leg, or something will happen to mar that shine. If you don’t enjoy the process, keeping that shine up is going to be more work than it’s worth.