How To Clean Leather Boots With A Illustrated Picture Guide

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How To Clean Leather Boots

Leather boots are fantastic boots to wear both in the summer and winter months. Knowing how to clean leather boots properly is a very important skill you need to learn if you plan on keeping your leather boots for a long period of time without destroying the leather material.

Leather is a natural material that will absorb any sort of oil, grease, and even water if it is stayed on it for too long. What this article will teach you is the best way to clean your leather boots with household items that you have right now that will transform the way your boots look.

leather chelsey boots on table

At the moment I have very expensive leather boots/shoes that I will show you how to clean with a step-by-step illustrated picture guide to make it easier for you to follow. If your leather boots have a light color, do not worry, my boots are the same and you will see the outcome. Now let us get to cleaning our leather boots.

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Supplies Needed:


Best way to clean leather boots

Below will be the step-by-step guide to clean the leather boots that you need to follow properly to get the optimum results that you want to see.

Step 1:

Clean Off Dirty Or Debris 

taking dirt off leather boot

The first thing you need to do is remove any dirt that might be stuck on the bottom or side of the boots in large chunks that might cause the area that you are working to get really dirty fast. This will also prevent you from getting the boots even dirtier.


Step 2:

Get Necessary Things Needed

leather boot, microfiber cloth, warm water in bowl, dawn dish soap, spray bottle

So for this cleaning method, you will need a small bowl filled with warm water and some dawn dish soap. Squirt a few drops of dawn dish soap in the bowl and mix it around. This will be the cleaning solution you use to wipe the leather material down and it can also be used to clean the sole of the boots if you add some baking soda to it. 

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cleaning solution with dawn dish soap and baking soda


Step 3:

Check For Stains And Scuff Marks

showing scratch marks on leather boot

After you get the mixture ready, check to see if there are any stains or grease marks on the leather boots that you need to target individually to get them out. Targeting them now will save you time when you go to clean the rest of the boots. Dip a small part of the microfiber cleaning cloth in the mixture you just made and rub the stain in a circular motion until you see it starts to remove slowly.

Do not use any hard texture cleaning tools on the leather of the shoes because it will scratch and scuff the leather and leave some ugly marks. Use a brush that is designed for leather or just use a cleaning cloth. 


Step 4:

Clean The Sole Of The Boots 

cleaning leather boot sole with toothbrush and dawn dish soap

In the mixture you just made in step two, adding some baking soda to it will create the perfect cleaning solution to clean the sole of the boots and remove brown dirt marks or green grass stains and mark. Add a few drops of the baking soda to the mixture, mix it around and use the toothbrush and scrub the sole of the boots until it is cleaned. You need to change the water after you have done this, remake a new mixture without adding baking soda to clean the leather of the shoes. 

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Step 5:

Clean The Leather Of  The Boots

cleaning leather boot with microfiber cloth

Dip the microfiber cleaning cloth in the new mixture you just made and gently wipe the leather down. I recommend going in a horizontal direction only so that the leather doesn’t dry with swirl marks and vertical and horizontal lines combined. 


Step 6:

Leave It To Dry

drying leather boot with a fan

Once you clean the entire boots, leave it to dry in the sun for not too long or use a fan to air dry it. Leaving the leather in the sun for too long will damage and dry the leather out and form cracks.


Step 7:

Condition Leather


This step is totally optional but will give the boots a nice aged look to it with a darker color. You can buy a leather conditioner on amazon or a leather milk and use it to wipe the boots down. This will not clean the boats, it will only give the leather the proper moisture it needs and hide creases.

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Before and after picture of cleaning the leather boot: Clean boot on the left

clean leather boot on the left

Cleaned Leather Boot:

clean leather boot after finish cleaning


How To Remove Stains From Leather Boots

Scuff Marks On Leather:

All leather shoes eventually will get scuff marks and scratches on them because leather is a nautical material. You cannot physically get out the scuff marks and scratches, but you can hide them and make them look more like a style. All you need to do is purchase some leather milk and it will hide all the scuff and scratch marks and make them look like your leather boots have more style to them.

Ink Mark On Leather:

Removing ink marks from your leather boats can be a bit tricky. What you will need to do is apply some raw dawn dish soap to the area on the leather that has ink on it. Leave it for 5 minutes and use a microfiber cleaning cloth and wipe the stain out. Do not wipe the stain out of its spot onto other areas because it will spread easily now. Simply just give it gentle wipes until it comes out.

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Grease Stains On Leather:

Removing grease stains on your leather boots is somewhat simple. Just use some warm water in a bowl with down dish soap and wipe the area down with a microfiber cleaning cloth damped with the warm water and dawn dish soap.



leather boot after cleaning

This article is the best way to clean your leather boots with the best homemade cleaning method at home. You can buy leather cleaning products online, but it can add up when you add all the things you need. If the leather on your shoes is really bad, cleaning it will not help and you will need to replace the shoes.

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