Buying a new pair of leather boots is always an exciting thing. However, not everyone understands how to soften leather boots.
If you have ever worn or tried out new leather boots, you must know that it can be quite an ordeal. New boots can cause painful blisters and other foot problems in the beginning. It is essential to soften the leather before taking out your shoes for a test drive.
In this guide, I will be discussing the top ways for softening the leather quickly. Trust me, I have had many painful days with new leather boots before finally figuring out the best ways to soften the shoes before wearing them in the long run.
If you are trying to make your experience with leather shoes as comfortable as possible, this guide is just for you.
How to Soften Leather Boots Quickly?
Softening leather is not as hard as it is made out to be. On the other hand, it is also not as easy as you may think. Leather is known to be hard, and that is why it is preferred.
It does not show signs of wear and tear as quickly as other materials. On the other hand, it can be quite painful and uncomfortable to wear in the beginning.
Here are the top tips on how to soften leather boots quickly. Try any of the following methods or a combination of the approaches to get the best results.
1. Use Oil to Soften Your Leather Boots
Prepare the Shoes
Wash the boots before any other material is applied to the surface. Oil should not be used until the shoes have been washed, cleaned, and dried thoroughly.
Use a damp cloth to wash the boots and gently wipe away any grime or dirt clinging to the surface of the leather. Brush them with a dry cloth again to make sure they’re dry and ready to be oiled.
Select the Oil with Care
If you are learning how to soften leather, you should know that the type of oil you use can have a considerable impact. Your leather boots will be restored and nourished by applying oils, leading to softer shoes.
There are plenty of oils that can soften your leather shoes, preventing or reducing rigidity. Here are some of the top oil choices for softening leather boots:
- Mink oil
- Saddle soap
- Coconut oil
- Foot oil
The oils, as mentioned above, are quite useful when it comes to softening the rigidity and stiffness of a new pair of leather boots.
However, you should also consult a leather professional before choosing the oil. For example, olive oil may feel like the right choice at the beginning.
It is known to be quite greasy, and it may leave your new shoes oily. The presence of oily spots will eventually lead your boots to a state of deterioration. So, consult before choosing the oil.
Read the Manual Carefully
Some oils have ingredients that can hurt your shoes rather than soften them. Beware of leather oils containing:
- Pine tar
- Castor oil
- Mineral oils
- Toxic chemicals
Such additives can damage your leather shoe or cause it to decompose. Before purchasing a particular leather wax or oil, read the label carefully. This can help save you from a lot of unnecessary trouble.
Apply The Oil to the Shoes
Once you have prepared the leather boots, and chosen the oil, the next step is to finally apply the oil. Here are some steps to help you figure out this process quickly.
- Pour a dash of oil into a dry, small dish.
- Use a clean cloth or torn-up t-shirt to wrap your fingers.
- Tap the wrapped fingers lightly in the poured oil.
- Lift them out of the oil after dipping your fingers to cause the excess to fall off.
- Use gentle, circular motions to apply the oil to the cleaned surface of your leather shoes and rub the oil into the shoe surface.
- Repeat until every area is covered and taken care of.
This simple procedure should be handled with care, as too much oil will just harm the integrity of the leather. Once you have applied the oil, do the below-mentioned steps.
- Let the applied oil absorb thoroughly into the surface of the shoes.
- Depending on the type of leather, you may have to wait a few hours or a full day for them to dry.
- Once the shoes dry, evaluate the softness of the shoes. If you think it needs another coat, repeat the steps mentioned above with care.
Oils are quite efficient when it comes to softening the leather shoes without hurting the surface of the material used.
2. Use Alcohol and Vaseline to Soften the Leather
When learning how to soften leather, you may also read about alcohol and Vaseline. These elements can offer natural softness and shine to your leather. Let’s dive right in.
Find Rubbing Alcohol
I was once an amateur leather owner. When someone told me to use alcohol, I immediately thought of using regular beverage alcohol. However, you need to find rubbing alcohol (Isopropyl) that is readily available at local drugstores.
Apply The Alcohol to the Shoes
The amount of alcohol or Vaseline to use depends on your shoe size. You will need more if you have a big shoe or jacket than if you have a pair that stretches to your ankle only. Here is the procedure to apply alcohol to your leather boots:
- Dip a cotton ball into the liquor.
- Massage it wherever uncovered leather is apparent in your leather shoe.
- Remove the laces since they are not leather and can be harmed by alcohol.
- Apply the rubbing alcohol on the sole and inside the boot to the raw leather.
- Let it sit and absorb for about thirty minutes.
Apply the Vaseline to your Shoes
You need to understand that alcohol and Vaseline go hand in hand. The next step is to add Vaseline on top of the applied rubbing alcohol. Here’s how I do it every time, and it works wonders for me.
- Use a small brush to apply and rub Vaseline on the surface.
- Apply and rub it in such a way that only a thin layer is visible.
- Allow the shoes to absorb alcohol and Vaseline and leave the pair for the night.
- Wipe the shoes with some dry cloth to remove any excess Vaseline.
Repeat the process if you think your shoes need more softening. Sometimes, I have to reapply the coat twice or thrice to get the results I need.
What Do We Have to Say?
Nobody becomes a master overnight when it comes to softening the leather. If you want to learn how to soften leather boots, you need to research, invest your time into it, and learn from your experiences.
The most common methods of leather softening are:
- Using Oils to soften the leather boots
- Using Alcohol and Vaseline to soften leather boots
- Using Shoe Stretchers
- Using Leather Waxes
- Wearing the shoes for a day
The last one may hurt your feet, but the leather shoes will be stretched according to your feet. You will feel more comfortable wearing them.
So, try any of the methods mentioned above, or a combination of them to get the results you want.