19 Tips On How To Soften Leather Boots And Gloves

In the fashion world, types of leather which are often used include cowhide, buffalo leather (less durable than cowhide and cheaper), baby lamb leather (soft and thin, often used as a jacket), mature lamb leather (more durable and more expensive). In addition, many items are made from solid leather, python leather, ostrich leather, and crocodile leather. Leather goods are luxurious and elegant, and the users are required to know how to preserve the durability of the product.

I. Overview Of Leather And Leather Stuff:

how to soften leather

Leather is a durable and flexible material form which is processed through the tanning process of animal hides, such as the hides of cow, buffalo, goats, sheep, deer, crocodile, ostrich, etc… The most common used leather is cowhide. Leather can be produced by many different methods, in large or small, from primitive to sophisticated scales.

To create leather, people have to go through the pre-processing stage to clean, soften the hides, and make them easy to penetrate the natural or chemical substances which will be used to transform raw hides into leather for being used in fashion, apparel clothing, and other industries. First, hides will be carefully filtered from the flesh and fat, and are carefully classified according to the types and quality. Then, the hides will be soaked to wipe off the dirt. Next, a type of lime water will be used for waxing and removing some types of proteins, fibers in the hides and change the structure of the hides a little bit so that the hides will have better ability to penetrate the chemicals which will be used in the next section.

Depending on the production area, chemical substances or the ones which are naturally extracted will be used to make the hides softer, more durable, waterproof better, and not rot over time. Next, the hide is exposed to dry, lubricated, dry, knead until soft and oily, flatten, and stained according to the demands.

II. How To Soften Leather Gloves And Boots Effective Tips

Softening leather boots and gloves with the correct techniques can keep them in the best shape. While leather is durable, boots and gloves need to be softened in order to protect your items from weather damage. When natural oils in the leather dry out, it becomes cracked and brittle. Softening leather will protect your leather items, so you can go on wearing them as if they are good as new.

1. Use Natural Oil

how to soften leather - use natural oil

Firstly, you lay your leather boots or gloves outside on a sunny day. Let it rest for 10 minutes to open the pores while you prepare the necessary materials. Apart from coconut oil and olive oil, you can try avocado oil, jojoba oil or almond oil.

Read More: 10 Benefits Of Avocado Oil For Health, Skin And Hair

Use any of the natural oils that you would use as a skin-soften. Leather is the treated and dried skin of a cow, so it basically made from the same thing as your skin. Besides, natural oils give added benefit of pleasant smelling, pick a natural oil that you want to smell. However, avoid choosing chemically hydrogenated oils such as commercial vegetable oils and corn oils.

Next, you rub your chosen oil into your boots and gloves. Simply, you can dip your fingers into the natural oil, then rub it over the surface of the leather items. Add some layers of oil to get the better softening effect. The more oil you take, the softer your leather will be.  You do not worry about taking too much oil. This is because most of the natural oils do not damage leather.

Let the oil dry into your leather items. Note that the oil can slightly darken the leather. However, it also makes your stiff leather smooth and wearable. In case your leather boots and gloves are not soft enough, repeat the oil treatment. You can also use the darkening effect to change your leather items’ look. Just ensure that you apply them evenly so there are no mismatching lighter splotches.

Using natural oil is a good way to soften leather boots and gloves, so try it out!

2. Add A Little Moisture

how to soften leather - add a little moisture

Although too much damp can be the enemy of leather items, a little moisture can help you stretch and even soften leather. Dampen your boots with a little clean water to soak through the material, but not make your boots wet. Stuff the boots with tightly packed newspaper and let them rest in a dry place. Let them dry slowly through indirect heat, avoid using a hair dryer as these methods will over-dry the leather, causing damage and cracks. Let it dry completely for at least a day

Learn More: Best Natural Moisturizers For Dry Skin You Must Know!

3. Use Dedicated Leather Conditioner

how to soften leather - use dedicated leather conditioner

You can buy this product (usually labeled as “restore”, “leather therapy”, or ”conditioner”) at stores. You can also use leather treatment products designed to clean, soften and polish leather shoes. Many of them will actually strengthen leather, and you can use them as the lasting solution. Look for products that deeply penetrate the leather and lock in lubricating fats like animal-based oil conditioners. Avoid to use greasy conditioners or mixtures with petroleum as they can weaken leather. Leather treatment products are often more expensive than natural oils. Choose one of these products in case you have enough money to spend on softening your boots and gloves.

Most products have specialized instructions on the bottle or tub of leather treatment products. Spray, rub or spread the conditioner into your leather items and let it soak. Let the leather dry before wearing it. In case you have already worn your leather items, wash away dirt by using a damp cloth before you condition them.

Keep your leather boots and gloves soft with frequent conditioning. Pay attention to the environment’s effects on the leather’s structure as different kinds of leather vary in water resistance, strength, and reactions to chemicals. In case you live in a dry place, do this treatment every two weeks. In case you wear leather items often in the snow, do this treatment once a week. Condition old and thin leather boots and gloves more often because they break down faster.

4. Use Shaving Cream

how to soften leather - use shaving cream

How to soften leather boots and gloves effectively? Spray a small amount of the shaving cream on a soft and damp cloth. Ensure that the cloth is slightly damp as excessive damp can damage the leather surface. You just need to rub this shaving cream into your leather items. Remember to use a back-and-forth motion following the leather’s grain.

Depending on absorbing the nature of your items, then apply the shaving cream again if necessary. Remember to avoid directly spraying this cream on your leather and go on working with the amounts of quarter-size shaving cream.

Read More: 25 Tips For Dry Skin On Legs And Feet – The Best Treatment Tips 

5. Lanolin

how to soften leather - lanolin

Moisturize your leather items with lanolin just to soften them. Lanolin can be found at some drug stores & online beauty websites. It includes a natural wax that is found in the skin of sheep and is mainly used to moisturize the skin and soften leather. Just apply a dime-size lanolin amounts  to a dry soft cloth then rub it onto the surface of your leather. As the waxy composition can leave a residue slightly, buff this area with a clean cloth after following. Remember to use linear and horizontal strokes. The circular application methods can create visible marks that are not easy to clear away.

Continue reading this entire article to discover other DIY tips on how to soften leather at home.

6. Mink Oil

how to soften leather - mink oil

Another one on the list of the best tips on how to soften leather boots and gloves that I would like to reveal in this article today and want all of my readers to know and consider following if you are trying to soften your leather items is to use mink oil.

Rub mink oil on the surface of your leather’s items. Mink oil gets a natural acid that acts as a softening ingredient. This product is common at most of the leather stores and sporting goods stores. Apply this oil as instructed & buff dry by using a clean cloth. The mink oil can slightly darken leather, so before treating the entire leather items, try using this oil on your less-visible area at first to test the results.

7. Walking Around In Your Boots To Soften Them

how to soften leather - walking around in your boots to soften them

One way to soften your leather boots is to wear them. Repeatedly wearing leather boots will make them become more pliable. However, if you have a new pair of boots and you walk around in them all day, your feet might start to feel painful. You can minimize this condition by just wearing them for half a day, then move on to more comfortable shoes or boots. In case your feet start to feel painful, take your boots off and wear another pair even if you have worn them for a short time. To speed up the process, add a little bit of water to your leather and walk around until your boots dry.

Repeat to wear your boots for half a day about 2 days later. When you feel them softer, try wearing them for the whole day. Try to wear them as often as you can.

In fact, this is among the most effective ways on how to soften leather at home. Therefore, people should not skip it out, yet read and then follow it.

8. Use The Heat

how to soften leather - use the heat

This method can help ease. However, it should be followed with caution as direct heat can damage your leather items. Do not use this method on old leather as heat is to crack the old leather. At first, you wear a pair of thick socks, and then put your feet in the leather boots. Sit comfortably and heat each boot one after the other by using a hair dryer. Heat 20-30 seconds at a time. After you stop heating, keep your boots on your feet while they are cool. Next, remove the thick socks, put on thinner socks and try your boots. In case you cannot notice the difference, repeat the method. You can also apply a skin care cream for your leather boots and gloves. This treatment will rehydrate your items after making them warm up.

This is actually also one out of the best home remedies that will help you soften leather boots and gloves easily at home. A lot of people in the world have been used this method to soften the leather at home.

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