How To Shrink Leather Boots [Step By Step]

How to shrink leather boots?

Leather is one of the most widespread materials used in the clothing industry. Be it jackets, or belts, or shoes, leather is everywhere. It is easily available and has valuable properties as a clothing material. Leather boots are famous among people of all ages and gender as they are comfortable yet durable. If you wear leather boots, then you know how comfortable it is.

While it is unlikely that you will purchase a boot that doesn’t fit, there are still chances of the boot being larger or smaller than your feet. This may happen in case of online purchases wherein you can’t try out the fitting. Well, don’t you worry, in this article, we are going to help you if your boot is larger than your feet and help you to shrink it.

Wouldn’t it be better if your boots could fit your feet with minimal efforts and without actually shrinking them? Here are some of the methods that we will recommend you to try before shrinking your boots. We are confident that by using these tricks your boot will fit you perfectly. Let’s take a look at them.

  1. Insert thicker insoles

Most boots have removable insoles. You can replace the insole in your boots with a new one that will help your feet to fit perfectly. In case your boot does not have a removable insole, you can add a new thin one or a thick one depending on how loose the boots are. This is the best and the easiest method to wear a large boot that will fit perfectly now.

  1. Wear thick socks

While thinner socks may be comfortable to wear, it won’t do any good if your boot doesn’t fit you. If the boots are large by a small margin, then this could be the best way to compensate for that gap. A thick sock provides cushioning as well and makes wearing the boot comfortable. This method is useful if your boot is large by only a few sizes, or if the boot is bigger enough, then thick socks can be used with the above method to compensate for the size difference.

  1. Stich a piece of elastic band

While this is not really shrinking the leather boot, it does the same task. Cut out a piece of elastic band that has enough thickness to make a difference to the boots. Keep the patch bigger, as it will ease the stitching process, while the extra elastic can be cut-off later. Use a safety pin or a hairpin to pin the elastic band to keep it in line with the heel area. With a thick thread and a needle, preferably a curved one, sew the ban with the boot. And don’t forget to remove the clipping pins. This method works best with a thin leather boot as a heavy-duty pair of work boots will give you a hard time stitching it. By using this method, you can make the boots fit your feet perfectly.

By using the above-listed methods, you can wear your larger boots, that too fittingly without the need of shrinking them. But what if you actually want or need to shrink them. Don’t worry, the next methods will help you to shrink the size of your boots.

Leather is a natural material, and due to this property, its size can be influenced by the use of external manipulators as extremes in temperature or even just a firm yet gentle stretching. The one thing to keep in mind while using these methods is that while leather naturally shrinks when exposed to heat, this can cause other problems, such as heating can make the leather brittle, developing cracks and wrinkles all over your boot. But don’t worry, we have kept all the proper precautions in mind while telling you how to shrink your boot so that it does not get damaged. Let’s have a look at them:

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  1. Wet and Wear Method

This principle uses the principle of heat to shrink your boots evenly from all places. This method should be used if your boot is too large and you want to shrink the entire boot. Follow these steps to do the same –

  • Step 1: Fill a bucket with lukewarm water

You don’t need a large vessel, but you need to completely submerge your boots. A bucket or a washbasin will do the job. Fill it with lukewarm water.

  • Step 2: Submerge your boots

Completely submerge your books in lukewarm water. Make sure that no part is left out of the water, as it will not shrink and can cause size disruptions.

  • Step 3: Soak your boots

Let your boots soak in water for around an hour. Ensure that your boots are properly and thoroughly saturated.

  • Step 4: Soak your socks

Take a pair of well-fitting or thick socks and soak them thoroughly too.

  • Step 5: Put on the wet socks

  • Step 6: Put on the boots as soon as you take them out of the water as they start shrinking right away.

  • 7 Step : Wear it until the boots dry off

While this makes look tiresome, it is the best way to ensure that the boots retain their shape and fit your feet perfectly. As the leather dries off, the boots will shrink down to the size of your feet. The socks protect you against the tightening leather.

  • Step 8: Apply Conditioner

Applying conditioner should fix any surface damage caused by the shrinking of the boots. You should let the conditioner dry out naturally.

While the entire process can be done without wearing the boots, however, in that case, you lose control over the resulting shape of the boots. Also, you can insert some boot stretchers into your boots if you don’t want to wear the drenched boots.

  1. Shrink Your Boots With A Hair Dryer

This method is used if your boots aren’t completely made of leather or if you need to shrink only certain parts of your boot. This method is just as simple and effective as the above one. Follow these steps to shrink your leather boot:

  • Fill a spray bottle with hot water

A sponge or an old rag can be used to dampen your boots if you don’t have a spray bottle.

  • Spray over the leather surfaces of the boot

Get those leather areas soggy as any dry part won’t shrink. To avoid making a big mess, spray from a distance of at least 5 inches (13 cm).

  • Dry the boots with a hairdryer

Start with the parts of the shoe that are loosest on your feet, as the parts that you dry first will shrink the most. Hold your dryer at about 6 inches (15 cm) in from the boots, and slowly and evenly pass over each one until they’re both dry. Be gentle as holding the dryer too close or running it too hot will wreck your boots.

  • Try on the boots to check the fitting

Once the boots are dried out, try them on with socks and check their fitting. If they fit perfectly, you are good to go. Else, repeat the above steps on the specific areas that are too big. Spray and dry the boots until the boots fit you perfectly.

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  • Apply leather conditioner on the boots

To prevent your leather boots from cracking or peeling following the heat from the blow-dry, apply conditioner on it. To make your boots really shine, feel free to use lots of the conditioner.

By using the above method, we guarantee you that you will be able to shrink your leather boots partially or fully. A lot of time and effort is invested in this method. It however produces a desirable outcome as well.

You know how important a good fit is. If by mistake your leather boots are large, you can have them shrink to the perfect size of your feet from the comfort of your home. In an unlikely event that your boots are still loose even after using all the above-listed methods, then we would recommend you to take the boots to a cobbler and let the man do his job. We won’t recommend you to try out any other methods as it can permanently damage your boots. Do give the above methods a try and take precaution while implementing them, as a wrong step can damage your boots.

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