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Keeping a favorite pair of shoes in pristine shape can be a challenge, especially as Chicago’s streets begin to take on their layer of winter grime.

A local business, Protect Your Pumps, has worked to address the problem with a product it launched quietly last fall, for which it has just rolled out a major branding effort.

The idea is simple yet brilliant: Protect Your Pumps makes sticky, transparent plastic covers for the soles of shoes that can be cut with scissors to get the right shape for your Choos or Louboutins. The covers--each pair lasts for three to five wears--protect the leather soles of your prettiest heels from dirt and unattractive scratches, so they always look fresh and new.

At $8 for one pair and $20 for three, Protect Your Pumps is less expensive than frequent re-soling--and for an investment like the perfect pair of sexy black stilettos, fashion insurance is a must.

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