There’s nothing like a great pair of leather boots or shoes. Not only are they stylish, but they protect your feet too. It’s no secret that quality leather footwear isn’t cheap. So, when your favorite pair starts to get wrinkles and creases it can be concerning. Fortunately, you don’t have to let your leather suffer. Take a look at these ways to keep your leather boots and shoes looking their best.
What Causes Leather to Crease Anyway?
While it seems like the quality of leather is to blame for the way your shoes crease, the shape of your foot and how you flex it while you walk is the main culprit. Leather is naturally flexible and easily forms to the shape of your foot. In fact, the best part of a high-quality leather boot or shoe is the way they form to your foot’s shape, in order to supply maximum comfort. However, this form-fit causes leather to crease and wrinkle.
Is There Any Way to Stop Leather Shoes and Boots from Creasing?
Yes, there is one way to stop your leather from getting creases: don’t wear them. Your feet have to bend when you walk, so creasing in your shoes is inevitable. Everyone is different, and your shoes won’t wear the same as someone else’s. For instance, you may roll your foot a certain way or drag your feet. Don’t worry, there are a lot of ways to diminish and slow down the appearance of creases.
(1) Choose the Right Size
Improperly fitting shoes crease much worse than a correct fitting pair. It’s essential to get a well-fitting shoe or boot to prevent prominent creasing and to ensure your comfort. If you’re having trouble finding a great fitting pair of leather shoes, try heading to the professionals. Many stores that sell quality leather shoes and boots have experts to help you make the right choice for your feet.
(2) Boot Forms and Shoe Trees
Your first line of defense against creases and wrinkles in your leather footwear is by using boot forms and shoe trees. The best kind of boot forms and shoe trees are made of cedar. They not only hold the shape of your leather shoes and boots, they give your shoes a pleasant scent, and absorb leftover moisture and sweat.
(3) Start a Leather Care Routine
After you’ve picked out the right shoe tree, buy supplies to start a basic leather care routine. Keeping your leather footwear clean and conditioned is a great way to make your shoes and boots look like new, even when they start to crease. You should use your leather care routine about every couple of months or whenever your boots or shoes get wet.
(4) Try Using an Iron and Cotton Cloth
Fill your shoe or boot as tightly as you can with newspaper to help maintain its shape. Turn your iron on a low setting that is no more than 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Take a cotton cloth and dampen it with water. Make sure your cloth is damp, not soaked.
Fold your towel evenly, and lay it over the crease, in order to prevent direct heat from reaching your shoe. Pass your iron over the crease slowly, while gently pressing the towel. Check the crease after each pass to be sure you’re not damaging the shoe, and continue until the crease is reduced as much as possible. Take the newspaper out of your shoes, insert and shoe tree, and let your shoes air-dry.
(5) Take Your Chances With a Blow Dryer
You can get creases out of leather by using a heat gun or blow dryer, but it’s risky. Direct heat on your leather boots and shoes can cause lasting damage to your favorite pair of shoes. Your shoes need your full attention if you plan your blow dryer.
Start by inserting your shoe trees into your shoes to keep their shape. Turn your blow dryer to its lowest setting and keep it about 10 inches away from the crease in your shoe. Slowly and gently pass your dryer back and forth to warm up the leather so that it’s warm to the touch. Set down your dryer, and start to delicately massage the crease out. Let your shoes cool with the shoe trees still in place. Your shoes or boots are going to be a little dry. So, you’re going to need to condition or oil them.
(6) Get High-Quality Leather Cream, Wax, or Oil
Finding the right cream, wax, or oil, also known as leather conditioners, for your leather can soften or remove creases without heat. Leather is a naturally porous material and absorbs any liquid it comes in contact with. So, make sure the leather conditioner you choose is the right one for your leather footwear, or you may end up with discoloration. No, you can’t use the same conditioner on your shoes as you would your car upholstery.
When choosing your leather conditioner, it’s important to know wax conditioners won’t do well with creases. However, they do protect the surface of your leather from water and other liquids. Fortunately, the right cream or oil nourishes the leather in your shoes and helps to remove creases.
Keep in mind that you can use too much leather conditioner. This can cause your favorite pair of boots or shoes to rot and become spongy. Always follow the instructions, always do a test patch, and remember that sometimes, less is more.
Quick Cleaning Tips for When Life Happens to Leather
Life happens, and your shoes are usually there for all of it. Take a look at these quick tips to keep your leather clean and as crease-free as possible!
(1) Your Shoes Are Wet
While your shoes are still wet, apply a leather conditioner. This helps the water evaporate and nourishes your footwear. Your leather shoe may end up cracking and wrinkling if you don’t condition them after they get wet.
(2) Your Boots are Turning White
White marks on your leather are usually caused by salt deposits from getting wet. Luckily, they are easily removed with leather conditioner and polish.
(3) Your Leather Stinks
As you can remember, leather is super porous. It quickly picks up scents like smoke. Usually, your cedar shoe trees can take care of any odor in your shoes, but you can use equal parts water and distilled white vinegar for particularly pungent scents.
(4) Your Leather Has Something Sticky On It
Get to that sticky spot as soon as possible with a clean cloth. Never wipe something sticky off your leather footwear, because it only makes the situation worse. Gently dab the spot with an appropriate leather cleaner. Wipe away excess cleaner, allow your shoes to dry, and then condition them.
Wear Your Leather Footwear, Look Great, and Feel Happy
There’s no other material like leather; it’s beautiful, natural, and durable. So, don’t keep your favorite footwear hidden in your closet, because you’re worried about damaging it. Shoes are meant to be worn, and yours look great on you!