So you just purchased a brand new pair of leather boots; the smell and the feel of leather can make anyone smile. Now, you want to learn how to care for leather boots. You do not want too many steps to follow, but then again, you want your boots looking new even after months of use.
Do you not want to keep your boots looking like the first time you wore them even after having them for six months? I thought you did. Well here are my nine easy steps on caring for your leather boots.
- Soft shoe brush
- Old rags (they should be clean, but ok if they are not)
- Leather boot polish
- Oil or Crisco
- Cotton swabs
- Dawn soap
- Your leather boots
- Corn starch
1. Get your Boots!
Get out your leather boots so I can teach you how to care for leather boots. Gather all of the ingredients. To make things go faster, mix the dawn dish soap and water together in a bowl and put one of the rags in the dish.
Take another bowl and add vinegar (I use malt, but use whatever is around) and mix water with it (this is also ideal for window cleaning…) and set aside. In a small cup pour some oil and lay your cotton swabs next to it.
Now, everything is set up for cleaning your boots, and you can just grab as we go.
2. How do you know if your leather is finished or unfinished? This is how!
Since your leather boots are usually finished, we will assume you do not need to do a spot test.
If you feel as though they may not be finished,rub some cleaner on them. If it does not absorb quickly, then they are finished like we though. If the cleaner absorbs immediately, then they are unfinished.
Usually, nice riding boots are not the sketchy style of leather, so you do not normally have to worry about this step. For peace of mind, I do recommend you do this.
3. First time polishing!
Finally, we can start to polish your boots. This is quite easy, and you have probably done this numerous times in the past. What I want you to do is take your boot polish and put it on a rag and just lightly dab at the shoe.
I like to start at the toe and work my way around the base and move up gradually. If this is fine with you, do it that way, or else do it how you feel most comfortable. There is no right or wrong way. Just a warning, this stuff does smell pretty bad.
4. Goodbye, dirt! Adios!
If you have dirt on your shoe, then we need to clean that off. The best way to do this is to take your soft shoe brush and in a downward direction brush the dirt off your boot. If it is caked on mud, you will just need to dampen a rag and wipe it off carefully.
Just start at the toe and work your way around the base and then up the shaft. You do not want the mud sitting on your boot because this can be quite harmful to the leather. This is also true with the dirt. A clean boot is a comfortable boot. And you are happy because your leather boot is clean!
5. A clean boot is a comfortable boot!
Once you wiped the dirt off, it is time to clean the boot.
This is where the dawn soap mixture and water come into play.
Take the rag that has been soaking in the soap and water solution and wring it out.
Carefully clean the leather boot starting at the toe and then around the base working your way up the shaft. Make sure all of the dirt and dust has been removed. After this go over the leather with a damp cloth and then pat it dry with a dry rag.
The boot is as clean as the day you bought it.
6. Do not be afraid of the elements! Show them who the boss is!
Since we usually wear boots during the winter time, we have to be careful with our boots in the snow, sleet, and rain. The city often lay down salt during these weather hazards, but our leather boots are the ones to pay the price.
The solution, however, is simple enough. Use the vinegar and water mixture to clean off the leather. As always, I start at the toe, work my way around and then up the shaft. After the mixture has been put on, wipe it away quickly with a damp rag. They are good as new.
Salt can be one of the most harmful elements for your leather boots, but not as bad as the next cleaning solution.
7. Wear your boots even in the most dangerous work zones!
If you work on a job site, or your street is being worked on, grease spillage can be a significant hazard with your beautiful leather boots. If you accidentally stepped in grease,do not fret , just stay nice and calm until you get inside.
Do not try to wipe it off because you will just irritate the leather and do more harm than good (plus; you may even scratch the leather!). Just take the corn starch and pour it over your boots making sure every bit of it is covered.
I recommend you leave them overnight to absorb the grease (it works like rice and water).
In the morning clear off the corn starch and wipe clean with a damp rag .
All of the greases have vanished, and you only have a clean boot to look at.
8. Wipe that scratch off your boot!
Do not fret if you see a scratch on your boot. This is perfectly reasonable, and it could happen to any boot connoisseur, even the ones who are so meticulous at taking care of their boots.
It is a piece of cake to blow out. Just take some oil or Crisco and put it on a cotton swab. Go from the scratch in a clockwise fashion around the scratch. You will notice it was disappearing right before your eyes.
As usual, take that damp cloth and go over where the scratch once was, and your boot is brand new. See, I told you that it could be fixed in a pinch!
9. Finally, more polishing!
Polish. Polish. Polish. This is what I have always been told when I invest in a new pair of riding boots.
The more frequently you polish them, the less you will have to worry about dirt and mud and other elements of the outdoors sticking to them.
The finish will help to repel any damage that can weather your boots. Just every week or so go around with a rag and shoe polish and start at the toe and go around the base and work your way up the shaft.
It should take maybe ten minutes per boot, but those twenty minutes are well worth it when you do not have to go out and purchase a new pair of boots each season.
I enjoy a bit of a weathered look on my leather boots; it gives them a more authentic and looks and feel. I usually wear my riding boots on all different occasions, so it helps them go with everything.
I have two pairs: one black and one brown. I have had the black for five years and by following these easy to use steps I have only needed to replace the sole once and that was last year. Believe me, when I say these easy to follow steps do work.
I also clean my boots about once every other week, unless the weather is bad and then it is once a week.
I do wear my boots seven days a week due to the climate I live in, but even if I did not live in this climate I would wear my leather boots on any given occasion.
So, it seems as though most of those ingredients were already in your kitchen cupboard, were they not? Cotton swabs, water, corn starch, Dawn dish soap and the rest of the items are just day to day things. Since you have leather boots, it is a good investment to have a good leather shoe polish and the good brush.
The better quality, the better the boot will look and repel any water or other harmful elements. Be sure to tell your friends about this article. They should know how to keep their beautiful leather boots clean. Plus, they might wonder how you keep wearing the same pair of boots year after year and not have to keep replacing them as they do.
Share the wealth of knowledge!