How to Shrink Cowboy Boots

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Men's cowboy boots in a row

You finally have the perfect men’s cowboy boots, your favorite pair that you wear all the time. Except it’s been a while since the last time you wore them and you realize something about them just doesn’t feel quite right and they don’t fit as snug as you’d like them to. Cowboy boots are an investment and getting rid of them just doesn’t seem like the right thing to do. Quality cowboy boots such as Ariat men’s boots and Ariat women’s boots are made of leather, which means that not only are your boots durable, but they are also susceptible to a bit of loosening. Over time, you may find that your leather boots begin to soften and stretch. But where there’s a will, there’s a way to get your boots to fit again. If you don’t know how to shrink cowboy boots, you’re in luck. Our pros share this convenient three-step process to shrink your cowboy boots.

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Cowboy Boot Buying Guide: Your First Pair of Men’s Cowboy Boots

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cowboy boots

Country and western wear has become increasingly popular in men’s fashion. Country icons such as Garth Books and Alan Jackson love a good, sturdy pair of cowboy boots while country singer Luke Bryan likes something a little more extravagant. At Sheplers Western Wear, we’re sharing a cowboy boot buying guide with some tips you can keep in mind as you purchase your first pair of men’s cowboy boots.

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How to Soften Cowboy Boots

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Lined up Cowboy Boots

Forget the western style clothes and the Wrangler jeans, cowboy boots are the quintessential piece that make a cowboy’s look. With over 40,000 pairs of boots in stock at our western wear warehouse, you could say we know a thing or two about cowboy boots. While you may find the perfect pair of cowboy boots, they may not always be the most comfortable. If your boots are feeling a little too tough for your liking, you can always soften your cowboy boots.

Steps to Soften Your Cowboy Boots

Make your cowboy boots fit like a glove. Follow the steps below to learn how to soften cowboy boots without ruining them.

  1. Soak a cloth in warm water and wring it out so it’s still wet, but not dripping. Then, rub leather saddle soap on the cloth until it starts to lather. Leather and water do not mix well, so it is important that you use the right products to make your cowboy boots last.
  2. Working in slow, small circles, rub in the saddle soap onto the outside upper part of the boot. Start at the toe and end at the back of the foot. For the most comfortable cowboy boots, let them soak in saddle soap for an hour. To soften cowboy boots with hard leather, let them soak longer.
  3. Once the time is up, remove any excess saddle soap while simultaneously shining your cowboy boots with a towel as you buff the surface. To soften cowboy boots that have hard leather, you may need to buff an extra time.
  4. Put your new Sheplers cowboy boots on with a thick pair of socks in order to help stretch out the leather faster. This trick works perfectly for women’s riding boots to men’s work boots.
  5. Continue to wear your boots around the house with thick socks to stretch them out.
  6. Softening your cowboy boots may take some time, so if the leather is still too stiff after two days, repeat these steps until your boots reach your ideal level of softness.

Cowboy Boots Care Tips

Taking the time to soften your cowboy boots can make the difference between boots you can only wear an hour at a time and an everyday pair. Now that you know how to soften cowboy boots, you may also be interested in knowing how to shrink cowboy boots and how to break in American cowboy boots to ensure that your boots have the best fit possible.

Our online western wear store has a wide variety of cowboy hats and cowboy boots in different sizes, shapes, and textures to ensure everyone in your family is rodeo ready. Consider Sheplers your one stop shop for all your western wear needs, our cowboys pride themselves on help you find the perfect cowboy boots to best fit your individual style and needs.

Additional Readings:

Men’s Cowboy Boots | Women’s Cowgirl Boots | Men’s Ariat Boots | Women’s Corral Boots

Original Post: June 2016

Updated on: February 2021

How to Break in Your American Cowboy Boots

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cowboy boots

No western wear outfit is complete without some American cowboy boots. So, when you find a pair of boots you like, you want to make sure that they also fit well. At Sheplers, we are the first to admit that it can be tough to break in your new American cowboy boots. Luckily, we have plenty of tips and tricks to make sure that your feet stay comfortable all day long.

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