Is Snow Bad For Leather Boots?

by Lindsey Rose Black

While they are a definite fall staple, leather boots can be tricky to transition into winter weather. If you're asking yourself, "Is snow bad for leather boots?" you're totally not alone! The answer is yes, but that doesn't mean you can never rock leather boots when the ground has turned into a winter wonderland. With a few easy hacks, you'll be able to take care of your leather boots properly and wear them regardless of what the weather forecast shows.

According to Primer magazine, "snow, cold, and salt are all leather boots’ worst enemies. All three of these things can lead to the leather of the boots drying out, cracking and eventually becoming irreparable." Yikes.

Sadly, I learned this lesson the hard way. I had a gorgeous pair of lace-up leather boots I'd found at a thrift store a few years ago. They were only $13 and they fit like a freaking glove. Naturally, this meant I wore them every day, including through the "blizzard" Manhattan faced last year. Bad idea since I hadn't taken any of the precautions below. I had to sadly part with my beloved boots that March due to too much wear and tear, and shall never make the same mistake again!

Follow the tips below to keep your boots looking like new so you can wear them all year long.

1. Weatherproof

Waterproofing Wax For Leather, $8, Nikwax

Before you step out the door, Outdoor Life recommends reaching for a waterproofing sealant wax or cream to protect the shoes against snow. My favorite is Nikwax since it doesn't alter the color of the leather.

2. Water & Vinegar On Salt Stains

If you end up with snow salt stains on leather boots, a mixture of equal parts water and white vinegar will get rid of them, according to Jezebel. Just dip a clean cloth in the mixture and swirl over your boots until every stain is gone.

3. Tissues Or Newspaper

Assuming you've just walked in the door after sloshing around in your boots, trekking blog GearWeAre advises stuffing the boots immediately with tissues or newspaper to absorb the moisture. Don't stick them by the fire, though! Too much heat will dry them out too quickly and cause cracks.

Images: Fotolia (1, 2); Pixabay; Courtesy of Brand