Q: I just bought a pair of leather riding boots (Vince Camuto, of course!) that I am officially obsessed with. I love them so much that I’m scared to wear them outside of the house because I’ve ruined so many other pairs in the rain, snow and slush. How can I save these boots from a similar fate?
A: We’re so excited for you to wear your boots and a style that you love can’t be reserved for the indoors—they need to be seen!
Before hit the pavement though, mist your leather boots with a waterproofing spray. You can pick up a spray at your local drug store (we like Kiwi’s Super Protector) or bring them to a cobbler for a low-cost treatment. The waterproof spray will help them repel water and keep rock salt from dramatically staining your boots. Always test the spray in a hidden area of the boot (like the heel) to make sure the color is unaffected.
When your boots do eventually get wet, let them dry naturally at room temperature. Do not blast high heat directly at your boots with a hairdryer or leave them near a heater; the heat will damage the leather. If the sidewalk salt leaves that unattractive white ring on your boots, combine one part white vinegar with one part water and, using a lint-free cloth, gently wipe away the salt. Finish by polishing the leather.
Whenever you’re not wearing your boots, store them upright with boot shapers inside or, if you’re in a pinch, drop a rolled up magazine or tall water bottle into the shaft. This helps boots retain their shape and keep from cracking along the folds.
Now bundle up and take those boots for a walk!