Does Olive Oil Waterproof Leather Work Boots?

Does Olive Oil Waterproof Leather Work Boots

Leather Work Boots are a good investment as they are very durable and comprise of features that we look for in boots. From protecting our feet to injuries to keeping them warm, and to look good, they serve quite a few purposes.

However, leather boots are not 100% waterproof because of their permeable nature, which can be a deal-breaker for some. Even if you buy waterproof leather boots, over time they lose this functionality as the material starts to get old and deteriorate.  

There are several tried and tested methods of treating leather to increase its longevity and improve the waterproofing aspect. Olive Oil is one such product that people use to treat their leather boots, but it does NOT assist in waterproofing, and can also ruin them in the long run.

While we encourage DIY, it is crucial that you know which product to use and which to avoid on leather boots. Some specific oils and waxes are available in the market to do the job of waterproofing. One important thing to note here is that leather boots cannot give you the same amount of protection from water as rubber boots but they are still worth it.

How to Waterproof Leather Boots?

As mentioned above, leather boots can be waterproofed using specific waxes, and oils. Apart from these, you also get sprays, creams, and pastes. 

1.) Firstly, make sure to clean your boots thoroughly using a clean cloth or a brush with soft bristles. This is a necessary step, to not leave any residue behind on the boots, which can hinder the process of treating the leather. 

2.) If the wax is hard initially, it needs to be made flexible before use. This can be done by warming it a little before the application.

boot clean with a lint free cloth

3.) Remove the laces if any, then use a clean lint-free cloth to apply the wax on the leather. You should never smear it directly on to the boots. Take small amounts of wax to do the job and apply it in a circular motion. 

4.) Leave the boots to dry naturally for a minimum of 60 mins to allow the leather to soak in the wax completely. Do not try to expedite the drying process by using a hairdryer, doing so may ruin the boots. 

5.) After it has dried, use another clean cloth to wipe off any excess wax remaining on the boots.

6.) Then your boots are ready to be used. Spill some water on them to check if the one coat of wax was enough. Feel free to apply another coat if necessary.

7.) Similarly, there are also sprays that can be used to waterproof leather boots. The only difference while spraying is that it can be applied directly to the boots. It is an easier option for people who have limited time in hand and need quick results. The process of spraying is less time consuming compared to waxing. 

8.) Make sure to keep the boots at least 6 inches away from you while using the spray. 

How often should you treat your leather boots?

Leather boots once treated with the right products for waterproofing will last for at least two weeks. However, boots waterproofed with wax last longer compared to boots treated with the spray. 

In either case, you can also consider using a leather conditioner post the waterproofing process. It helps in making the leather boots more supple and increases its shelf life. 

Benefits of Waterproofing Leather Boots

Let us look at the several advantages of waterproofing your leather boots.

1.) To begin with, by waterproofing leather boots, you are protecting them from harsh elements that can ruin them in the long run. It acts as a shield against dirt and grime. 

2.) Over time the shape of leather boots gets deformed with water seeping into them time and again. Hence, waterproofing will be beneficial in retaining its shape.

3.) Leather boots that are exposed to water often can also cause blisters on your feet. As the moisture gets trapped within the material. Waterproof leather boots will not allow water to penetrate through which in turn will keep your skin from harm’s way. 

4.) Your leather boots will remain young for a longer duration with waterproof treatment. Apart from preventing water to seep in, it also helps in rehabilitating the leather once they start to look old. 

5.) It is best to treat the boots when they are new as it will be able to steer away from water from the start. 

Below is a list of recommended waxes and sprays that I have found to be effective

Is olive oil good for leather boots?

Olive oil is not great for your leather boots and the reason behind it is that olive oil is heavy oil and leather has numerous pores in it that will soak up the oil and in a long run rot the leather.

Think of the olive oil when you are cooking; only a little amount is enough to cook the entire meal. Olive oil can grease substances to a large extent and that is why when applied to leather boots, it will stay on them for a long time and rot it in a long run.

Also, olive oil tends to darken leather unnecessarily and so in case you want to apply olive oil, you can only do so to your black colored boots.

Can I use olive oil on my cowboy boots?

Cowboy boots are made of high quality smooth leather, and therefore, it is NOT recommended to use olive oil on them.

Applying olive oil on them on them will only worsen the quality of the leather by making them sloppy because the leather would soak excess oil (olive oil being heavy in nature) and make the leather greasy as a result. This will also attract more dirt while you walk on the streets and the dirt would get into the pores of the leather and damage them sooner.

Can you use olive oil to soften leather?

You can only use olive oil on black colored boots!

Yes, olive oil can be used to soften leather boots if they are too much dry and have started to develop cracks in them.

But, be very careful with the quantity of the olive oil you are going to apply. Only a little will do the job. Also, do not forget to blot the leather with tissue paper after a few hours so that the excess oil comes out from the leather thus, saving your boots from the damage.

How do you shine boots with olive oil?

To shine your boots with olive oil, just follow the simple steps below:

      • Clean your boots with a lint free cloth
      • Apply a few drops of olive oil with your finger tips and massage in small circular motions onto your boots
      • Take a tissue paper and dab on your boots to soak up the excess oil from the boots onto the tissue paper
      • Take a horsehair brush and brush your boots rigorously to bring on the shine

Wrapping up

There are quite a few home remedies too that can help waterproof leather boots. Such as – Vaseline, transmission oil, candle or beeswax, and clear enamel spray. However, relying on them is not a wise decision. It is advisable to buy a proper product from a trusted brand to treat your leather with.

Never try something new that is not backed by a trusted source, because leather is expensive and it will be a shame to lose out on a good pair. Read the labels of the products for clear instructions as each of them are different from one another.  

Whenever you waterproof leather boots make it a point to let the wax or spray get into the seams. These products can be harmful or cause irritation to a person, hence, you should wear protective gloves to avoid coming in direct contact with them.

Another added tip for the best results is to keep the boots in a well-ventilated space when leaving them to dry. Any amount of moisture can hamper your efforts. Apply these tips and methods to give your leather work boots the care it needs to protect your feet and also increase their durability. 

Stephen Luettgen
I have 12+ years of experience in construction, inspections, handy work, and currently working as a Construction Site Manager. In today’s day we spent a significant part of our time at workplace and a right work gear can have significant impact not only on your safety but also work quality.

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