How to Care for Leather Shoes?


Leather shoes are fantastic, as they don’t only proffer great comfort but also offer an awesome fashion appearance. Many leather shoes come built to be durable and quite stylish but they require some level of care to keep them in great shape. So, ‘how to care for leather shoes’ is one crucial thing to know if you have one. It could be oiled, new shoe, wet or soft leather shoe but no worries, I discussed the solutions.

There are various rules for cleaning leather shoes, as its material can easily get damaged by doing it the wrong way. With that, your footwear is bound to last for a long time and duly serve its purpose, while keeping your feet relaxed. Would you like to offer your favorite dress boot some extra mileage and protect it from harsh elements? Then, look forward to some excellent rules, tips, and tricks for leather shoe care.

Treatments for Leather Shoes

Even with the best quality leather shoes, you can expect them not to last long with little or no care. Thus, proper care for leather footwear is essential, and various treatments can help. The commonest of the leather treatments include:

Cleaning with a Damp Cloth

With the frequent use of your leather shoes, dirt and dust are bound to accumulate, and using a damp cloth in wiping them off would help. Kindly note, it is a “damp” cloth, and it would help if you wrangle the cloth to get excessive moisture out before wiping dirt and dust off your footwear. 

A more frequent schedule for wiping your leather boots would help, not minding the leathery type. While soaps and other cleaning liquids help remove dirt better, it would help to avoid them and only employ water for wetting the cloth before cleaning the shoe. There are various harsh chemicals in most soaps and cleaning agents that may cause great damage to the leather.

Applying Shoe Polish

Ever thought of giving your leather shoe a shiny and glossy look? Applying some shoe polish would help you achieve that and the good news is that this action would also protect the leather. The moisturizing effect of various leather shoe polish is quite tremendous. Thus, it would help if you purchase a quality leather polish from any of the brands available.

Conditioning Leather Shoes

One of the common things that leather owners should know is how to condition their crafts, as leather conditioners are excellent for waterproofing the leather surface. Rubbing a generous amount of leather conditioner on your shoes would also help get off wrinkles and it would help if you apply it once in a while (2-3 times a year or more).

Rules on Leather Shoes Care 

Here are some top rules that you should keep in taking care of your leather shoes:

Supply Enough Air

Wearing shoes leaves your feet sweaty and as such, provides room for some microbial activities leading to mildew and mold breakouts. Thus, keeping your leather footwear ventilated would help, as the air can dry up those moisture and leave the shoe fresh and free from smell. So, sore your leather shoes in ventilated areas, and please, avoid the use of plastic bags for packing your shoes; use cotton fabrics instead of proper ventilation.

Avoid Sunlight and Excessive Heat

The UV rays from sunlight can have some damaging effects on leather; so shield your leather shoes from such harsh treatment. Also, the nature of leather makes them vulnerable to heat, and to protect those precious pairs of pricey boots, do not dry them with excessive heat. Treat your leather shoes with great care, cherish and adore them, and you would reap the long-lasting benefits.

Clean Regularly

Cleaning the leather footwear is a basic thing to do, as it takes off grime, dust, and dirt, and as such, allows the leather to breathe. So, at the end of the day when you take off those fashionable boots, try to rub off dirt with a damp cloth and air-dry. This action would improve the shoe’s longevity and make them look fancier.

Avoid Waterproofing Products

Waterproofing leather shoes is one common practice to keep them free from moisture and its potential damages. However, you may not require adding this feature with footwear made of genuine leather, as it can handle snow and rain. Waterproofing leather boots may not be a good idea, since it locks all the leather pores and offers lesser breathability.

Test all Leather Care Products before Applying

Leather care products come formulated with various ingredients and some may not be compatible with your leather shoes. Applying some treatments to your shoes may result in some changes that you may not like. Nevertheless, you can first test them out on a small part of the shoe where the effects would be less visible. Then if it seems fine, you can apply it all over the leather footwear.

Employ Polish of Natural Colors

Picking the right color of polish for shoes can be quite challenging, as you can find leather footwear appearing in different shades of a particular color. It may seem less tricky to pick compatible polishes for black boots but brown, grey, blue, and the rest colors may pose a challenge. Thus, the easiest way to get around such is by employing neutral (natural) colored polish.

Tips and Tricks to Care for New Leather Shoes

  • Get your feet familiar with the shoes by wearing them for a few hours
  • Keep them free from moisture and dry them quickly if you notice any wetness
  • Keep the shoe’s back secured with a shoehorn to prevent it from collapsing
  • Clean thoroughly after each use
  • Store in a well-ventilated area

Final Thoughts

Investing in quality leather footwear is worth it, as they can provide you great comfort, flexibility, and durability. However, how long these leather shoes last is dependent on how you care for them. So, it would help if you look for easy ways on how to care for leather shoes to build a long-lasting relationship with your fancy boots. You can peek through the tips, tricks, and rules for maximum leather shoe care in this article and get on it.

Read Also: How to Keep Shoes from Creasing When You Walk?

Steven M

Footwear Technologist | Blogger | Philanthropist

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