A friend of mine found out the hard way that toddlers, sports drinks, and Ugg Boots do not mix well and asked me if I would be able to clean them. While I had no previous experience cleaning animal skin boots I decided to do some research and give it a try.
Step 1: The Problem
My friend's daughter decided it would be a good idea to pour a blue sports drink into her mom's Ugg boots and shake them back and forth (I'll give her props on how thorough she was able to soak them). While the inside was salvaged by dabbing with a towel, the sheep skin on the outside had a very noticeable stain (along with various salt and water damage from Wisconsin winters)
Step 2: Cleaning
To clean the boots I used a sheepskin cleaner which is basically a mild detergent (a few pages on the internet I found said a vinegar solution would also work). It should be noted that Ugg sells a cleaning kit for around $20 which includes a brush, a cleaner, a conditioner, and a sealer (which in hindsight would have been helpful). The cleaner I bought was about $5.
Along with the cleaner you will need:
A Rag or Heavy Paper Towel
Newspaper or Plastic Bags
To start cleaning, wet the surface of the boot. Make sure they are damp but not soaking wet (I applied water using a damp paper towel).
Next apply the cleaning solution to a sponge and work into to boot's surface, making sure to cover the whole area and not just the stained areas.
After the cleaning solution is applied the boots can be rinsed off. I used a wet paper towel to pad cold water over the surface although placing the boots under a slow running faucet also works (Just be careful not to soak them). Be sure to soak up any excess water so the drying process goes more smoothly.
Step 3: Drying
The wet boots will lose their shape so they must be loosely packed with newspaper or in my case plastic bags. It only took about four balled up bags in each boot to fill out the shape. In my case they took a little over 24 hours to dry.
Step 4: Finished
Once the boots have dried they are noticeably more clean on the outside. Ideally at this point they should be conditioned and sealed so that they will be more stain resistant but if the immediate appearance of the boots is what's most important (which it was in this case) then the job is done.
On a side note, any grease marks can be partially or fully removed by applying chalk to the stained area, letting it sit for a few hours, and then brushing off. The chalk should draw out the oil.