Boot Care 101

In most areas of the States, colder weather means stowing the sneakers away and breaking out more rugged kicks to deal with inclement weather. For any office that calls for business casual attire, work boots are now coming back in a big way, and at more formal offices, the right dress boot can be the perfect style move to meet both dress code and weather challenges. Unlike most sneakers, boots look pretty dope with a little age and character built in, kind of like a great leather jackets. The shoes end up taking on the form of the wearer and no two pairs age the same. But even if you can afford to be a little loose with the wear and tear, don’t default to utilizing the boots as shitkickers. Use the following tools and techniques to make sure the boots last longer than any other kicks in your closet. Plus, if you plan on dressing up your boots it’s all the more important to make sure they’re looking their best.

Brush It
Get a solid natural hair brush - Horsehair is the gold standard - it’s a key player in proper boot upkeep. Yak hair is another option too, just make sure the bristles are always made of natural hairs. Synthetic bristles can actually nick up the leather and suede on boots if you’re not careful. Natural wear and tear trumps wear and tear due to user stupidity all day every day and twice on Sundays. Brush on the regular to remove dirt and grime and before applying additional cleaning remedies.

So Fresh, So Clean
In terms of cleaning, you want cleaner and conditioner. A lot of companies will offer two for ones, but don’t fall for it. We advocate for separating the cleaning compounds from the conditioners since some can actually considerably change the color on your boots. For cleaners, our money goes to Lexol. Mink oil conditioner formulas get shouted out a lot amongst enthusiasts, but they tend to darken the appearance of boots, so buyer beware. If you want to keep the original hue of the kicks, finding a ph balanced conditioner is key. You're rocking animal hides, so just like your ashy ass elbows and knuckles in the Fall, they need moisturizing more than you think. Forgetting to condition the boots can lead to irreparable damage. Don't forget to cop specialized cleaners for suede boots as well. They don't require as much moisturizing but they do tend to retain dirt a lot more than leather.

Sweat The Technique
During the wet season, have a regular rotation of boots to rock with. When boots get wet they need to dry on their own. Unnatural methods of drying will lead to cracked, dried out leather that can’t be restored. Plus, having more style options for prohibitive weather never hurts.

As soon as you purchase your boots, wipe them down with a soft cloth to get rid of any dust. A cleaning likely isn't needed since they're brand new. Skip to conditioning them using a soft cloth or cloth sponge, and let them dry naturally. If your boots aren’t new, use a damp rag to wipe off any dirt or stains off, then move onto the leather cleaner. For anyone concerned with colorfastness, test an area first. We typically go for a small area on the tongue that would normally get covered when the boots are tied properly. Read the instructions too, bruh. More is not always a good look, and depending on a product, a few light layers of conditioner work way better than one heavy coat. And do like Daniel-San with the wax on wax off circular motions when rubbing conditioner into the uppers.

When it’s all said and done, bad weather doesn’t mean you can dress badly. Let the boot game catch up to the sneaker game and flourish amongst other style gawds.