How To Waterproof Boots With Mink Oil: 7 Proven Ways

Like how you could use lotion to preserve and repair your body or oil to moisturize your hair, mink oil is a leather softener applied to rejuvenate dried-out leather products. The leading contenders for mink oil treatment are boots and daily-use boots because they sustain the most harm over time. Boots that have been cleaned often last a lot longer and cost less overall.

In this article, I’ll tell you how to waterproof boots with mink oil quickly and easily to create a protective layer. However, the protective layer will heal tear from repeated usage, close gaps, and joints, shields leather from stains, and refills the oils that leather must remain soft and expandable.

Mink Oil: What Is It?

Mink oil is a leather softener primarily used to increase the water resistance of boots and shoes. On a positive note, mink oil forms an oil layer that deters moisture. However, it also dramatically dims leather, which is a drawback.

After using mink oil, it’s pretty tricky to get your boots back to their natural color; there’s a risky investment that they’ll be forever discolored. Yet, there are measures you may take to get them back to their natural hue; I’ll go through those afterward.

Where Is Mink Oil Produced?

The American and European minks are the two kinds that are most frequently raised as livestock.

Different kinds can be found worldwide, mostly in forest environments where they dig underground tunnels. Since frogs, fish, crayfish, and birds are frequently found in their food, they often like to search close to water streams.

Since the 1950s, they have been treated for their fur, which is utilized to produce jackets, among other products. They are commonly made between seven months and one annual old because they have a relatively limited lifespan, generally below five years.

Mink Oil Effects

The name awareness for mink oil did not appear overnight. It has served as the standard treatment for maintaining leather products ever since. Workers in the agricultural, engineering, and other professions found frequent interaction dried out their leathers, but mink oil appeared to undo the harm.

The salves wasted from leather after each use and, to a minor degree, during production are replenished with mink oil. The leather becomes more susceptible to breaking due to oil depletion, which could cause the fibers to separate and cause the leather to age more quickly than it should. In addition to replacing the lost oils, mink oil softens the threads to make them more resilient and stretchy.

7 Ways to Waterproof Boots With Mink Oil

Despite the common complaint that applying the mink oil in the wrong ways damaged my boots, it is relatively simple to apply. However, you must also be aware of what must be completed. Here is a simple guide for applying mink oil to boots.

Ways to Waterproof Boots With Mink Oil

Remove The Dirt

When the mink oil is indeed applied, the boots cannot remain unclean. Even minute amounts of debris might cause the oil to become blocked and eventually develop breaks.

A 3-in-1 shoe brush is also advised because it is ideal for getting into your boots’ crevices. But if you don’t want to use it, a straightforward dry cloth would work just as well. It won’t, though, be as successful.

Clean Out The Grease 

Not just the dust, either. The cleansing of the mink oil can be ruined by sticky oil. It’s great if you take it out in advance. The easiest option is to wipe the boot with a wet towel warmed with hot water. But don’t get the shoes wholly drenched. It should only take a few sweeps to complete the task.

Apply The Mink Oil 

You can remove the mink oil from the bottle in two methods. Using a towel is one option. Another approach is to apply oil on the boots with your fingertips while wearing rubber gloves.

I favor moving my fingers generally. The same holds for pure mink oil. I believe the bulk of the oil is absorbed by itself. Thus, it is a loss. I’m not interested in it. Anyway, lightly rub in small circles using little portions. It will disperse evenly in this manner.

Cover the Entire Boot Skin

To encompass the entire boots requires some time. It would be best to do it numerous times because you “should” only take small amounts each moment. But eventually, you’ll finish. Don’t omit any information, though.

Let the Mink Oil Dry

Retain them in that condition once you’ve finished coating. You don’t need to take any action. The leather will quickly swallow the oil if you let it in a properly ventilated area for a couple of hours. Never even consider using heat or strong wind to accelerate the process. It will disrupt the procedure.

Wipe Away the Remaining Oil 

Almost all mink oil should have been swallowed by the time the waiting is over. Yet, a lot relies on how much effort you put in. However, you can wait for a little more if you choose. After that, use a cotton towel to clean the boots.

Ordinary clothing can also be used, but the cloth will be more refined. You needn’t exert additional strain, though. It is best to wipe as lightly as possible. Don’t forget that you’re not polished. Only the surplus is being taken away.

Apply Polish For a Shine

This next step is entirely optional. But if you were unaware, if you polish your boots, they will appear glossy. Leave it if you prefer the way it looks.

Mink Oil Applying Considerations

Before applying mink oil to your boots, there are some factors you need to be aware of. By being aware of these, you can avoid making serious mistakes.

Light-Colored Boots Are Not Acceptable

Mink oil and lighter leather boots don’t go well together, especially if you prefer your shoes’ color. Light-colored boots will inevitably get darker when the oil is soaked. However, if you’ve already committed this error, I get a tip on how to lighten leather boots that can let you fix it.

Do Not Apply T Nubuc and Suede Leather

It’s essential not ever to ignore this. It’s not only mink oil either. For suede and nubuck leather, stay away from all types of leather treatment.

These varieties of leather weren’t intended to be conditionable. They don’t even require it. The fine fibers will all disappear if you happen to use them.

Stay Away From cotton threads, Boots

Despite the fact that you shouldn’t overthink this, cotton threads are hardly used by companies today. However, it’s preferable to be aware in advance. When a cotton thread is exposed to mink oil for an extended period, it tends to waste away.

Do Not Overuse

Take care not to use too much. Many people use so much mink oil that it appears that the leather is saturated. The worst possible thing you may do to leather is that. The leather’s inherent quality will be compromised. In short, use small quantities and reapply as needed.

How Frequently Should You Oil Mink Boots?

How frequently you wear your boots determines how regularly you should use mink oil on them. When worn frequently, monthly is sufficient. If not, remove them from the wardrobe every six months and coat them in mink oil.

Additionally, you must be aware that mink oil will slightly discolor the leather. If you’re wearing black boots, you might not even see them. On the lighter objects, though, it will be as bright as the sun.

Final Remarks

Whether you like it or not, mink oil is here to remain and will tend to be a popular enhancer. The item has existed for a long time and is reasonably practicable in a workplace context.

It remains a conditioner for working men, though. It is designed for hardworking individuals who work on construction sites or farms and wear tough leather. Since they anticipate it, professionals and tourists don’t mind if their shoes go darker.


Does mink oil make leather brittle?

When used correctly, mink oil won’t make the leather brittle. The leather will become overly supple, the holes in the skin will become blocked, and ventilation will be impeded by using excessively or too routinely mink oil.

Why is mink oil applied on boots?

Boots routinely worn in challenging settings, such as extreme heat, damp weather, or filthy, dirty locations, are treated with mink oil. A layer of mink oil protects the leather.

How long should I let my boots soak in mink oil?

Leave the mink oil on your boots for around 10 minutes to allow it to absorb. It can take a bit more time if they are incredibly thirsty.

Can shoe polish be used over mink oil?

Mink oil typically leaves a little gloss upon polishing, but it significantly dries out glossy leather. Shoe polish can be placed over mink oil to repair the facade and provide resistance properties, soft leather, and all three at once.

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