Sunday, October 20, 2019


Hey Dude,

I hope you're well, sorry for messaging you directly; nevertheless, I wondered if you had any suggestions for boots treatment. I've got a pair of Red Wing Engineers Boots, that due to non-use need softening and I wondered what you use to keep your boots looking so good and comfy. I'm vegetarian and would prefer something not animal based, what would you suggest?


Hey Nick, 

I'm a huge fan of Pecard leather care products. I use the Boot and Shoe Care Oil along with Antique Leather Dressing. Neither products contain animal fat, tallow, mink oil, lanolin, or neatsfoot oil.
I use Barbasol shave cream to clean my boots. It's not abrasive and safe for all leather colors and it's inexpensive -- back in the 1990s, it was perfect for a young Marine who broke dozens of layers of black boot polish every week or two -- and it just yields the best results. It provided a perfect blank canvas to reapply fresh polish for a perfect spit shine. 

My cleaning process goes as follows:

Unbuckle all straps and brush off any dirt. 

Apply a generous amount of the shave cream over the entire surface of the boot. Massage the cream into the leather using your hand followed by a soft brush -- toothbrush is perfect for the job -- to clean using a circular motion. Ensure the welt and seams are not ignored. 

Allow to air dry over night or place in front of a fan for half the time.

I squeeze / pour a decent amount of Boot and Shoe Care Oil into a small container and apply generously onto the surface, welt, creases, seams, strap using my fingers. Since it's an oil, the absorption time is minimal. I may add a second layer depending on how dry I feel the leather to be.

Allow to air dry over night or place in front of a fan for half the time.

You can essentially stop at this point and feel confident the boot are being preserved and protected from the elements, but I like to add Antique Leather Dressing.

I apply a fairly thin layer of Antique Leather Dressing with my fingers as I would the Boot and Shoe Care Oil and allow the leather to absorb it over night (or sometimes two). 

Use a boot brush to buff away excess dressing. 

Done. This process isn't necessary again for a long time unless the boots are put through some grueling work or exposed to the sun for a long period of time. 

I hope this helps.


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