Most hunting boots go through a lot. Hunters wear them in quite hostile conditions. The boots have to face mud, trash, dirt, dust, sand, wear and tear and what not. And all of this not only deteriorates the quality of your good looking boots but also degrades the quality to a great extent.
So what to do? You cannot, of course, escape putting your boots through all this, and you cannot avoid these conditions also. Plus, the main reason that leather hunting boots need so much of care is that leather is a natural material. It is also skin. So like our skin, it too will get damaged if not properly cared for.
Let us explore how we can keep our boots look brand new even after years. Just do regular cleaning following the steps and you are good to go.
Insole and laces
First of all, remove these. The boots must be aired properly and dried after each and every use. Do not leave them damp anytime. Also, it is a good practice if you remove the laces and insoles also when they are drying so that the boots dry up properly.
The reason is that insole absorbs a lot of moisture. Thus, removing it will dry up your boots much faster. Ideally, you should let your hunting boots dry for 24 hours before you can wear them again.
Dirt has the potential to ruin the color of your boots. Once you remove all the laces and insoles, make a point to remove all the dirt. If your boots are very badly soiled, use a shoe cleaning product. For normal dirt, use lukewarm water. This opens up the pores of leather and then closes them again.
Use lukewarm water
Brushing the leather revives its properties. Thus, leather can breathe again. If you do not want to use cleaning products, go for lukewarm soap suds. And then, the leather absorbs all the water. This leaves it in an unprotected state.
Since wet leather has left your hunting boots exposed and open-pored, you need to do something for it. Else it will hamper the quality of your boots. So to close the pores again, use an impregnating spray when they are still wet. This prevents the absorption of water into the leather, enabling it to keep breathing.
The hunting boots should be creamed on a regular basis. Water and dirt remove its natural properties. So cream is needed to rejuvenate them. Otherwise, the leather will break and become cracked up. Since hard leather is not flexible, it will be ruined.
Use a hair dryer to melt the cream a little as it stays hard when you open it. Apply it with bare hands. This ensures smooth coat and better stay. Again use a hair dryer to absorb the cream into the leather. Real leather needs external agents to maintain its shape and stay flexible.
Dry the boots
Let it stay at room temperature. The boots will dry on their own. Never make the mistake of putting it near some heating element else it will burn the leather. It will rip it apart and give a bad effect.
Testing the leather
There are other steps like waxing and oiling. If you do these steps properly, then water will form droplets on the surface of the leather and not get absorbed by it. Now, if you manage to get this done, congrats!
Keep repeating these steps and do the cleaning and maintaining on a regular basis. This will maintain the new look of your hunting boots for a very long time.