How To Clean Cowboy Boots – Step-By-Step Guide

Cleaning your cowboy boots regularly not only keeps them looking great but also extends their lifespan. The most common way to clean cowboy boots is by using a cowboy boot care kit or, alternatively, a horsehair brush and a bottle of leather cleaner.

However, what happens if you have neither of these on hand? In this article, we’ll be looking at how to clean cowboy boots with a leather cleaner and some household items.

How To Clean Cowboy Boots

tips to clean cowboy boots

How To Clean Cowboy Boots With a Cowboy Boot Care Kit

To clean your cowboy boots with a care kit, follow these steps:

  • Take a damp cloth and wipe the lower section of the boots to remove any dirt or mud. You can use an old toothbrush to loosen any stubborn particles that won’t come off with wiping.
  • Let the boots dry for a little bit until all the moisture is gone.
  • Dip into the leather cleaner with a dry cloth or sponge and gently scrub a thin layer of cleanser onto the boot.
  • Leave the boots to dry and they should look as good as new

How To Elean Cowboy Boots With Household Items

If you have no leather cleaner on hand, then you can try these household items to clean your leather boots.

Banana Peel

Using a banana peel may allow you to get rid of stains and protect the leather surface of your boots.

  • Take a banana peel and rub the inner surface evenly over the boot.
  • Wipe off any residue with a dry towel

Water And Vinegar

A solution made from water and vinegar could also be used to clean your cowboy boots.

  • Mix a 1:1 ratio of water and vinegar.
  • Immerse a dry cloth in the mixture and squeeze out any excess.
  • Rub evenly over the surface of the boots

Hair Conditioner

You can try using a hair conditioner to clean your boots.

  • Apply a fair amount of hair conditioner to your boots.
  • Use a soft cloth and wipe clean


If you have none of the other items at home, then water will do.

  • Soak a cloth in some warm water and wring out the excess.
  • Use the damp cloth and rub over the surface of the boots

How To Care For Cowboy Boots

Cowboy boot care requires much more than cleaning, you also have to condition and polish them if you want to keep them in good shape. You can even waterproof your cowboy boots, which further preserves and protect them.

How To Condition Boots Using Cowboy Boot Conditioner

cowboy boot conditioner

After cleaning your boots, you need to condition them. You can use a cowboy boot conditioner to do so.

  • Take a dry cloth or sponge and dip it into the leather conditioner.
  • Apply to your boots. Start from the bottom of the boot and work your way up using small circular motions

Make sure that the conditioner is fully absorbed into the leather. If the boots still feel dry after application, then you can apply more conditioner by repeating the process. This way the leather on your boots will be soft and moisturized, which will give them a better look, keep them in good shape, and make them more comfortable.

How To Polish Cowboy Boots

polish cowboy boots

Once your boots are conditioned, you can polish them to further improve their appearance and make them shine. You will need to use a wax space neutral polish to do this.

  • Apply a thin coat of polish to the areas of the boots you want to shine. Be sure to apply a thin and even layer to these areas.
  • Once the Polish dries, use a soft cloth the brush off any excess.
  • Take a horsehair brush and buff the polished areas to create a stunning shine.

How To Waterproof Cowboy Boots

Cowboy boots go through a lot, especially when riding in the pouring rain or trudging through mud. These boots are designed to survive the rugged and rough lifestyle, but if you’re not careful the leather used in construction can become stretched, cracked, or discolored from water exposure.

To stop this from happening you can waterproof your cowboy boots and help them retain their shape and prevent the smelly odors caused by mildew. Before you start, make sure that the boots are clean. It is also recommended to check and see if the manufacturer recommends a specific product for their boots.

In most cases, wax works well to waterproof your cowboy boots. It also nourishes and protects the leather.

  • Begin by heating the wax so that it can spread more easily. Do this by placing the wax in a warm area or by heating it with a hairdryer.
  • Once the consistency is optimal, use a clean cloth and apply the wax on the entire exterior of your booth. make sure to apply a thick and even coat.
  • Leave the boots to dry overnight. The next day, remove any excess wax and buff the boots to make them shine.

Read here for more on how to waterproof leather boots and shoes.

Frequently Asked Questions

How To Clean And Take Care of Ariat Cowboy Boots?

High-quality Ariat boots are great if you work 10-12 hours a day outside. The leather and the EVA midsoles give you a great balance between durability and comfort. To clean and care for your Ariat boots, begin by wiping away excess mud and dirt.

Use a toothbrush for stuck-on dirt and a dry eraser or whiteboard eraser to remove scuff marks. Let the boots dry, then condition them. Once you’re done, polish the boots to make them shine and you’re done.

How Often Should I Clean My Cowboy Boots?

This will depend on how often you wear them. If you wear them every day, you should clean them at least every 3 months. If you wear them periodically, you can clean them every six months. You can take a few seconds after every wear to knock or brush the dirt off your cowboy boots. This helps to keep them cleaner in between regular cleaning.


Cleaning and caring for your leather cowboy boots will allow you to enjoy them better and for longer. Follow the simple steps in this guide and keep your feet happy, comfortable, and protected in your cowboy boots.

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