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Caring for Western Boots

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Cowboy boots get dirty. If your boots aren’t covered in dust, mud and all sorts of other dirt after a day in the stable or in the saddle, then you might be doing something wrong. They are supposed to get filthy. Western boots are durable and with the proper care can withstand almost anything you throw at them.

Western boots are meant to help riders stay safe in the stable, the pasture or the saddle. The best way to make sure they remain in good condition is to keep them clean and well maintained. Here are a few easy ways you can help to prolong the life of your western boots:

  • Clean the boots every time you take them off for the day. Dusting them off and removing any loose dirt with a damp cloth works best. Q tips and toothbrushes work great for getting into those hard to reach crevices. Never use cleaning solutions on the leather. Some contain strong chemicals that can dry out and crack the leather or cause the boot to become discolored.
A leather conditioner like Lexol can help keep your boots soft and flexible
  • Sometimes, boots can get pretty dirty and grimy. In these instances, a few wipes aren't going to help remove that built up dirt. Instead, use a mild cleanser or a saddle oil to clean them. Saddle oil is very effective for not only getting rid of the dirt but it also provides a protective coat on the boot leather.
  • Every few weeks apply a leather conditioner; this helps to keep the leather flexible and soft while also preventing it from drying out. Lanolin-based conditioners work well. Two thin coats are more effective than one thick coat.
  • To keep your boots waterproof, apply a water protector periodically which prevents the leather from absorbing water. The water is repelled and simply runs off the boots.  Before you purchase, read the label of the protectant first. You don’t want to use one that contains silicone or petroleum as these will cause the leather to dry out.
  • Polishing isn’t mandatory but it’s always nice for your western boots to have a sheen to them. If you plan on giving your boots a good polish, use boot cream polish and a boot shining cloth to buff the polish into a shine.
  • Always dry out your boots completely after a good cleaning or before storing them for the night. Air-drying works best but a good boot dryer is also very efficient. Boot dryers blow lukewarm air into the boot and do no damage to the leather of the boot. Never place your boots near a fireplace to dry it out; this will damage the leather.

Cowboy boots should be cared for and cleaned regularly to keep the leather in good condition as well as extend the life of the boots. With the proper care your western cowboy boots will last a lifetime.

 


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