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Winter Boots Care Guide

Winter Boots Care Guide

So you've just received your pair of Maguire winter boots and you want to know how to take care of them? The lifespan of a snow boot will depend on how you use and maintain it. Here are some tips and tricks!

Three Golden Rules

1. We use a water-resistant leather in our winter boots. This means they will keep you comfy and dry under normal use in the rain and snow. However, they are not waterproof, so avoid spending time in deep puddles, as they will eventually soak through.

Our suede boots, on the other hand, are more delicate.  While suede boots will also keep you warm and dry, they are susceptible to stains upon contact with rain and snow, and require specific care from the outset to be well protected.

2. All our winter boots are made from high quality leather, but it remains a sensitive material. That’s why our boots are designed for city use, not snowshoeing adventures. ;) Avoid excessive friction and scraping, but no matter how careful you are, scuffs and scratches may accumulate over time.  It’s part of having leather boots!

3. ALWAYS test any maintenance product on a small out-of-the-way area to ensure satisfaction before applying everywhere. 

Leather Boot Maintenance

Our number one advice is to prevent these famous white winter stains from appearing on your boots in the first place! These stains result from road salt dissolved in the snow, so the secret is to always remove snow and slush from your boots before it has a chance to penetrate. Shake off your feet after stepping in snow and keep a rag by your door to wipe your boots upon arrival.

How to remove salt stains from your boots?

If you do end up with salt stains on your boots, you can use our cleaning wipes to remove them. Use the wipes gently and only on the section with salt stains. Avoid using them too often as they can alter the appearance and lustre of the leather.

First use:

While our winter boots have not received specialized waterproofing treatments, you have nothing to do for your first use.

Repeated use:

  • Over the course of use, observe your boots for signs of waning water resistance (water no longer beads on the surface) or signs of drying (the leather changes colour or sheen, becomes white, or exhibits cracks).
  • Use our natural shoe wax to condition your leather boots, restore appearance and increase lifespan. Like a hydrating skin cream, shoe wax nourishes and protects the leather from cracking. Always clean your boots with a damp cloth before applying.
  • Depending on use, condition as often as needed.  We recommend at least once at the start of each season!

A note on other common leather care products:

  • Waterproofing spray: Leather sprays are less effective than wax.  The protection doesn’t last so you pretty much need to apply a spray every time you go outside…not very practical for most of us.  Regardless, if you do use a spray, be sure to clean your boots with a damp cloth and allow it to dry beforehand.  Always test your product on a small patch of material to check for discolouration, follow the instructions on the bottle, and spray often. 💁‍♀️
  • Mink oil: Use with precaution!  In the past, we have seen boots become damaged by poor application. This is why we suggest a less oily product or to ask a cobbler to apply it. However if you are used to this product: Always test your product on a small patch of material before using.

Nubuck and Suede Boot Maintenance

Nubuck and suede have a more delicate finish and are more prone to stains than leather. Even though they are water resistant, these materials demand regular treatment from day one to maintain their appearance, particularly those in pale or bright colours.

First use:

  • Apply a suede and nubuck spray that repels liquids and prevents stains.
  • Note that these sprays can sometimes alter or darken the colour of suede. Before applying the spray, ensure your shoes are clean and dry, and test in a small area.
  • If you are satisfied with the effect, spray a light, even coat over the entire surface of the shoe. Spray with a distance of 30 cm and do not over spray. Leave to dry for 15 minutes, then spray your shoes again. 
  • You can reapply every 3-4 weeks if you wear your shoes every day.

Warning: Avoid stains whenever possible, as these can be difficult to remove and cleaning options can alter the appearance and the grain of suede.

  • For a small isolated stain: Try to remove stain with a soft damp cloth.
  • For a large stain: You can use a suede brush. Gently brush soiled regions to restore the suede's original finish. We advise testing beforehand on a small patch to verify satisfactory results.
  • If exposed to rain and stains resemble drops of water: With a soft damp cloth, moisten the boot in a uniform manner until the drops are no longer visible. Allow to dry.
  • If a full/deep cleaning is needed: If after a couple years your boots have accumulated dirt and stains over a large area, you can employ our cleaning kit. Please note that this treatment should only be used occasionally as it can alter the appearance of the suede (though better that than dirty!).

But the best tip we can give you...

Bring your boots to the cobbler! Simple as that. Whether it is at the beginning of the season or at the end. They are the best person to make sure your boots will remain beautiful.

List of Best Cobblers in Canada

  • Atelier Carinthia | Cordonnier-Bottier

3412, Rue Saint Antoine Ouest, Montréal QC, H4C 1A8

(514) 935-8475

https://www.carinthia.ca/

  • Cordonnerie Rockland 

Centre Rockland, 2305 Chemin Rockland #1400, Mont-Royal, QC, H3P 3E9

(514) 342-6455

https://www.cordonnerierockland.com

  • Cordonnerie Jarry

409, Rue Jarry Est, Montréal, QC H2P 1V2

(514) 388-8583

  • Karpman Hopital des Chaussures

56, Rue Rachel Est, Montréal, QC H2W 1C6

(514) 499-9297

 

Cobblers in Toronto

  • Sole Survivor | Shoe & Boot Repair in Toronto

https://solesurvivorshop.com/

  • Nick’s Custom Boots & Shoe Repair

167 Dupont Street, Toronto, ON M5R 1V5

(416) 924-5930

https://nickscustomboots.com/

 

Cobbler in Ottawa

  • Capital Shoe Clinic

203, Queen St, Ottawa, ON K1P 5C9

(613) 232-8632

Others Questions?

If you don't find the answer you're looking for there, don't hesitate to reach out to us at hello@maguireshoes.com.

We wish you a happy warm winter!