How to care for your leather work boots

For Leather Boots

First, clean good leather boots as often as possible. Brush them with a shoe polishing brush to remove dust and debris. For stained or very dirty boots, wipe a damp sponge over a bar of saddle soap and rub them all over with it using a circular motion. Rinse the sponge and wipe the soap off with the dampened sponge.

Next, condition leather boots with a leather conditioning product. This may include mink oil, neatsfoot oil and dubbin. Any of these products keep leather soft, supple and waterproof, but you must use them often if you frequently wear your boots. 

Be sure to polish leather boots with leather polish, if they are scuffed or badly marked. Brush the polish onto the boots and allow it to dry and harden. Rub with a clean polish brush to shine them. Buff with a cotton cloth. Apply a boot waterproofing product, if desired.

For Suede or Nubuck

    • Brush using a plastic or rubber-tipped brush.
    • Do not wash with saddle soap.
    • Apply nubuck conditioner to nubuck but not to suede.
    • Clean stains off of suede with a solvent-based cleaner and a dry cloth or medium-abrasive sandpaper.
    • Spray a waterproofing product formulated for nubuck or suede on the boots regularly to prevent staining.