How to Shrink Leather Boots – 5 Easy Methods

Boots are a wardrobe staple for both men and women, but when they don’t fit properly, it can be a challenge to make them look good. Do you also have a favorite pair of leather boots that don’t fit right anymore? Maybe you’ve outgrown them, or they don’t quite fit the way you’d like them to. Don’t worry – shrinking leather boots is a pretty simple process, and it can be done without causing any damage to the boots. In this blog post, we will discuss some easy methods for how to shrink leather boots, so continue reading for all the details.

How to Shrink Leather Boots
How to Shrink Leather Boots

Let’s discuss how to shrink leather boots: five proven methods?

Although leather boots are a fantastic complement to any outfit, maintaining them in a good shape can be quite challenging. If your leather boots have also gotten too big or loose, there are a few different ways you can shrink them back down to the required size. We’ll show you five of the best methods for shrinking leather boots, so you can enjoy wearing them for many years.

Method 1: Soak your boots in water-

Soaking your leather boots in water is one of the easiest ways to make them smaller. This method works best if your boots are made of leather or suede, or any other natural material. Here’s what you should do:

What do you need?

  • A basin or tub large enough to fit your boots
  • Water
  • A towel


Step1: Get everything together-

Ensure that you have gotten everything together before you start. You’ll need a basin or tub that’s large enough to fit your boots, water, and a towel.

Step 2: Fill the basin with water-

Fill the basin with sufficient water that allows you to fully submerge your boots. The water used should be lukewarm and by no means hot. As hot water can bring harm to the leather. This method also works best with distilled water, but you can use tap water if you have no other option.

Step 3: Soak your boots in the water-

Once the basin is filled, carefully place your boots in the water and let them soak for about 20 minutes. The water will help in loosening the leather’s fibers and will make them more malleable.

Step 4: Remove your boots from the water-

After 20 minutes, remove your boots from the water and set them on a towel. Don’t try to wring them out or squeeze the water out of the boot as it can easily ruin the leather.

Step 5: Let your boots dry-

Once your boots are removed from the water, let them air dry. You can speed up the process by using a hairdryer on the low setting, but be careful not to overdo it. As too much heat can damage the leather.

This method is best for boots that are made of natural materials like leather or suede. It is also vital that you take proper caution while using this method to avoid damaging the leather. We would also advise that you avoid this method if your boots are composed of synthetic materials.

Method 2: Wet Your Boots and dry them with a hair dryer-

If your leather boots are made of natural materials, you can try shrinking them by getting them wet and then using a hair dryer to dry them. This method works well on nubuck, suede, and full-grain leather boots. So, let’s have a look at how it’s done:

What do you need?

  • A set of oversize leather boots.
  • A bowl or sink of warm water
  • A clean cloth
  • A hairdryer


Step1: Get everything you need-

First, gather everything you’ll need for this method. Make sure you have a pair of oversized leather boots, a bowl or sink of warm water, a clean cloth, and a hair dryer.

Step 2: Wet your boots-

Next, wet your boots in the warm water. You can either submerge them completely or just dampen them with a cloth. Be sure to evenly wet all areas of the boots.

Step 3: Use the hair dryer-

After soaking your boots, use the hair dryer to warm them. Keep the hair dryer at a safe distance (approximately 6 inches away) from the boot’s surface and move it around so that the whole boot gets heated evenly.

Step 4: Check for fit-

Once you’ve finished heating the boots with the hair dryer, put them on and check for fit. If they’re still too big, repeat steps 2-4 until they’re the right size.

Step 5: Let them dry and enjoy!-

Once your boots fit correctly, let them dry completely before wearing them. It might take some time, perhaps even overnight. However, once they’re dry, you can enjoy your perfectly fitting leather boots!

Method 3: Sew in an Elastic Band-

This is a good option if you need to make a small adjustment to the fit of your boots. An elastic band is an easy way to take in a bit of extra fabric around the top of your foot, without making any permanent changes to the boot. Let’s see how it’s done:

What do you need?

  • Elastic Band
  • Needle and thread
  • Scissors


Step 1: Gather all materials-

To start, acquire all the supplies you’ll need for this project. You’ll need an elastic band, a needle and thread, and a pair of scissors.

Step 2: Measure the elastic band-

Next, measure the elastic band around your leg just above the boot. Cut the elastic band to size, and set it aside.

Step 3: Sew the elastic band into the boot-

After that, stitch the elastic band into the boot’s top or shaft using the needle and thread. Start at one side of the boot, and stitch across to the other side. Be sure to sew securely so that the elastic band doesn’t come loose.

Step 4: Trim any excess thread-

Finally, trim any excess thread from around the Elastic Band. Now, your boots should fit snugly around your leg, and they shouldn’t slip down when you walk.

This is a quick and easy way to take in a bit of extra fabric around the top of your foot without making any permanent changes to the boot. You can also use this method to make small adjustments to the fit of your boots as needed.

Method 4: use thick socks and insoles.

Another fantastic option is to wear your leather boots with thick socks and padded insoles. This will help to fill out the boots and make it appear as if your boots have shrunken. The procedure is as follows:

What do you need?

  • Thick socks
  • An insole
  • Your leather boots
  • A hairdryer


Step 1: Get the required resources-

The procedure starts with acquiring all the tools and resources that you would need for this method. This includes your leather boots, a hairdryer, an insole, and some thick socks.

Step 2: Insert the insole-

Next, take your insole and insert it into the boot. Make sure that it’s placed correctly so that it doesn’t come out when you’re wearing the boot.

Step 3: Put on the socks-

After the insole is in place, put on the thick socks. The socks should be tight enough that they don’t fall off your leg when you walk, but not so tight that they’re uncomfortable.

Step 4: Put on the boots-

Now, carefully put on the boots. If they are too difficult to put on, you may require some assistance from a shoehorn or your friends and family.

Step 5: Use the hairdryer-

Once the boots are on, use the hairdryer to heat the leather. Distribute the heat from the hair drier across the entire boot by moving it around in various directions. Avoid keeping the hairdryer in one location for too long, as this can damage the leather.

Step 6: Walk around-

Now, spend some time walking around in your boots. This will allow them to adapt to your feet and shrink down to the proper size.

Step 7: Remove everything-

Once you’ve walked around for a few minutes, remove the socks and insole from the boot. Then, take off the boots and let them cool down.

Your leather boots should now have shrunk down to the correct size! If they’re still a bit too big, you can repeat this process until they fit perfectly.

Method 5: Spray on an Alcohol-Water Mixture-

This is a great way to quickly shrink your leather boots. However, this method is only applicable to boots made of genuine leather. Let’s go over the process in detail.

What do you need?

  • A spray bottle
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • Water
  • A clean cloth
  • A hairdryer (optional)


Step 1: Gather all materials-

The methods start with acquiring all the supplies and gathering them in one place. This ensures that you don’t run into any problems during the process. You’ll need a spray bottle, isopropyl alcohol, water, a clean cloth, and a hairdryer (optional).

Step 2: Mix the alcohol and water-

In your spray bottle, mix equal parts of isopropyl alcohol and water. Shake the spray bottle well to form the solution. This will be your shrinking solution.

Step 3: Spritz the solution onto your boots-

Next, the solution needs to be sprayed onto your leather boots. Ensure that the mixture penetrates the whole boot, including the sole.

Step 4: Wipe away excess solution-

Get rid of any leftover solution on your boots by wiping them down with a clean cloth. As you don’t want them to be sopping wet, but still you want to ensure that they are completely coated.

Step 5: Dry your boots-

Set your boots aside to air dry, or use a hair dryer on the low setting to speed up the process. Once they’re dry, you should notice that they’ve shrunken down to a smaller size.

This method is great for quickly shrinking your leather boots, but it’s important to note that it can also damage the leather if you’re not careful. Hence, make sure you only use this method on the natural leather and that you don’t overdo it with the spraying. Otherwise, you run the danger of permanently ruining your boots.

So, these were some of the most reliable methods for shrinking your leather boots. If your boots are too loose or big, give one of these methods a try and see how it works for you. With some time and work, you can get your leather boots back to the size that used to fit you the best.

How to Improve the Fit of Your Large Boots.

Finding the ideal pair of boots only to discover that they are simply too big can be very irritating. Luckily, there are a few tricks you can try to make your boots fit better.

1: Wear thick socks:

This is probably the most obvious solution, but it can work well. Wearing a thick pair of socks (or even two pairs) will help to fill up some of the extra space in your boots and make them feel snugger.

2: Use heel inserts:

Heel inserts are little pads that you can put in the back of your shoes to help fill up any space and make them fit better. They’re relatively cheap and can be found at most drugstores or online.

3: Wear boot liners:

Boot liners are basically like socks for your boots. They’re made of a thin material that helps to fill up any extra space and make your boots fit better. You can usually find them in the shoe section of departmental stores.

4: Tighten the laces:

This is a good option if you’re having trouble with your boots slipping off your feet. Tightening the laces will help to keep your feet more secure in the boots and prevent them from sliding around.

5: Wear moleskin on your feet:

Moleskin is a soft, fluffy material that you can find at most drugstores. It helps to pad your feet and make them feel more comfortable in ill-fitting shoes. You can either cut it into pieces and put it on your feet before putting on your boots, or you can apply it directly to your skin once you’re wearing the boots.

Hopefully, these tips will help you to make your big boots fit better. All you need to do is to take your time and don’t rush, soon you’ll find an answer that works best for you.

How to Pick the Right Shoe Size?

There is no one-size shoe that fits everyone, nor is the standard-size shoe offered by different brands the same size. Such that sizes can differ between brands and in some cases even between the styles offered by the same brand. So, how do you make sure you’re picking the right shoe size?

Here are some general tips that can help you pick the right shoe size for your feet.

1: Know Your Foot Size

The first step is to know your foot size. This is important because it will act as a reference for you whenever you are out shopping for a good pair of shoes. For this, all you need is a tape measure and a piece of paper. First, trace your foot on a piece of paper and then measure it with a tape measure or a ruler. Once you have your measurements, you can use a size chart to determine your shoe size.

2: Try on Different Sizes

Once you know your foot size, it’s time to try on different sizes of shoes. It’s important to try on shoes with socks so that you can get a feel for how the shoes will fit. Pay attention to how comfortable the shoes are and whether they’re too tight or too loose.

3: Consider Your Width

In addition to your shoe size, you also need to consider your width. There are three different widths: narrow, medium, and wide. Try on different pairs of boots for each width to see which one is the most comfortable for you.

4: Consider the Activity

When you’re picking out shoes, it’s also important to consider the activity you’ll be using them for. If you are planning on running or engaging in other high-impact activities, then you must ensure that your shoes can give you the needed support and cushion. On the other hand, if you’re just going to be wearing them for everyday activities, you may not need as much support.

5: Read Reviews

Finally, remember to read reviews before purchasing any shoes. See what other people have said about the fit, comfort, and quality of different types of shoes. This can help you narrow down your choices and find the perfect pair of shoes for your feet.

By following these tips, you can be sure to pick the right shoe size for your feet. With the right shoes, you’ll be able to stay comfortable all day long, no matter what you’re doing.

Some Big mistake when you shrink boots?

There are some big mistakes you can make when you’re shrinking your boots, and we’re here to help you avoid them!

1: Never use boiling water-

This is a surefire way to ruin your boots. The boiling water will cause the leather to dry out and crack, and it will also warp the shape of your boots.

2: Don’t use too much heat-

Applying too much heat to your boots can also cause them to warp and dry out. Use a moderate amount of heat and move the boot around to ensure that all sections are uniformly heated.

3: Don’t forget to condition-

After shrinking your boots, you should condition them to keep the leather smooth and pliable. Get a high-quality leather conditioner, and apply it generously to your boots.

4: Don’t wear them right away-

Give your boots time to cool down and adjust to their new size before you wear them. Otherwise, you risk damaging them or may not get the proper fit.

If you follow these easy guidelines, you can reduce the likelihood of making common mistakes that can ruin your boots. With a little care and attention, you can shrink your boots successfully and enjoy them for years to come!

How to prevent shrinkage in leather boots?

Shrinkage in leather boots can be prevented by following a few simple tips.

1: A good rule of thumb when buying leather boots is to go half a size up from your regular size. This will allow for the natural shrinkage that occurs with leather.

2: Never leave your leather boots out in the sun or a hot automobile. As leather can shrink and lose its shape upon being exposed to heat.

3: When not wearing your leather boots, stuff them with newspaper to help hold their shape.

4: If your leather boots do get wet, stuff them with newspaper and let them dry naturally at room temperature. Do not use a hairdryer or other source of heat to speed up the drying process, as this can cause shrinkage.

5: When cleaning your leather boots, use only saddle soap or a mild detergent designed specifically for cleaning leather. Harsh chemicals can take away the leather’s natural oils, which can make it dry out and shrink.

6: Condition your leather boots regularly with a quality leather conditioner to help prevent shrinkage and keep the leather soft and supple.

By following these simple tips, you can help prevent shrinkage in your leather boots and extend their lifespan.

Related Questions:

How can I make my boots tighter?

By lacing them up tightly! Start at the bottom and work your way up, making sure to pull each lace tight. You can also wear thicker socks or put a shoe liner in your boots to make them feel snugger. Lastly, if your boots are still too loose, consider using moleskin or duct tape around your ankles for extra support.

How do you permanently shrink leather?

Unfortunately, there is no way to shrink leather permanently. However, you can try to shrink it temporarily by soaking it in water and then drying it in a warm place, such as near a radiator. To get the best results, you may need to do this numerous times.

Is it possible to shrink leather shoes?

While it is possible to shrink leather shoes, it is not recommended. Since leather is a natural product, it deteriorates quickly when exposed to high temperatures or moisture. Attempting to shrink leather shoes may cause them to become misshapen, discolored, or weakened. If you must shrink your leather shoes, do it with utmost caution.

How do I know if my shoes are too big?

There are a few ways to see if your shoes are too big. First, see if your heel slips out of the back of your shoe when you are walking. Second, see if you can fit more than one finger between the back of your heel and the shoe itself. If either of these is true, your shoes are likely too big. Third, test the shoes by walking around in them to determine if they are comfortable and stable. If they don’t, then they’re probably too big. Finally, keep in mind that shoes usually stretch out a bit over time, so if you’re unsure whether or not your shoes are too big, it’s best to err on the side of caution and go for a smaller size.

Does heat make leather boots shrink?

No, heat will not make leather boots shrink. Leather is an incredibly tough material that is resistant to shrinking or stretching when exposed to heat. However, if you are concerned about your boots shrinking, you can always buy a size up and use a shoe stretcher to help keep them from shrinking.

Do leather boots shrink over time?

Yes, leather boots may shrink over time. If your boots are becoming increasingly constrictive, try a boot stretcher or sizing up.

How to shrink leather shoes with vinegar?

The first step is to Collect all your supplies. For this, you will require a cup of white vinegar, a spray bottle, and a clean cloth. Begin by spraying the shoes with vinegar and using a cloth to help evenly distribute them. After that, give them 24 hours to dry in a warm area. Check the shoes again after 24 hours to determine if they have shrunk. If they haven’t shrunk down to your satisfaction, you can always repeat the process until they do.

What is the best way to shrink leather?

The best way to make leather shrink is to soak it in water and then dry it. This will make the leather get smaller and tighter. You can also use a leather conditioner to help shrink the leather.

Conclusion Paragraph:

In conclusion, we have discussed several options for how to shrink leather boots. You can try one or more of the methods listed above and see which ones work best for you. Some factors to keep in mind include the materials of your boots, how much room you need to shrink, and whether you want a permanent or temporary fix. Be sure to test out the solutions on a small area first before applying them to your entire boot. And finally, don’t forget to pick the right shoe size from the start so you don’t have to go through all this trouble!

Ella John

Ella John created with the vision of helping people to find the perfect boots for any occasion. As an expert in the field of footwear, she has created a comprehensive guide to finding the perfect boots. With her BA (Hons) in Footwear Design from De Montfort University, UK, Ella John has been writing about boots for several years. On you can find helpful information about the latest trends, tips for taking care of your boots, and advice on how to choose the right pair. Ella’s mission is to provide her readers with the best possible advice and help make sure that everyone can look their best in a perfect pair of boots. So if you’re looking for the information and inspiration you need to find the perfect boots, look no further than

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