How to Clean Rawhide Leather Boots

by Corey M. Mackenzie

Rawhide boots look rugged and are suitable for going to town or riding the trails. Unlike other kinds of leather, rawhide is, as the name suggests, raw leather. This means it hasn't been treated. Because of this, rawhide leather boots easily pick up grime and hold fast to dirt and stains. You can clean rawhide leather boots, bringing them back to a newer, fresher appearance. However, you must follow specific rules to prevent ruining rawhide leather boots.

Items you will need

  • Rawhide leather comb or brush
  • Rawhide cream
  • Soft cloths (at least 3)
Step 1

Take the boots outdoors or set them on a towel to prevent dirt particles from falling all over the floor.

Step 2

Gently rub the boots down with a rawhide leather comb or brush. Look for these items at stores that sell boots or equestrian supplies (tack). The comb or brush should remove much of the loose dirt. Follow with a dry cloth, rubbing this over the boots to dust them off.

Step 3

Place a dime-sized amount of rawhide cream on a soft, clean cloth.

Step 4

Rub the cream evenly over the shaft of the boot, gently working in the cream. Be careful not to let a concentrated amount of the cream settle on any one spot. You may end up with a darker area there than the rest of the boot.

Step 5

Continue rubbing down the boot. You may need to add a little more cream but don’t use more than necessary. Do the same with the other boot. Follow with a dry cloth to work in the rawhide dressing even more. This dressing cleans and also conditions this kind of leather. Let the boots sit in a dry area overnight before wearing them again.

Tips

  • Use a cream only when the boots get really dirty or start to look like they are drying out. In between such times, rub grime off with the comb, brush or a cloth.

    Use only rawhide cream or dressing. Do not use any other leather cleaner, unless the product specifically states it can safely be used for rawhide.

    Don't rub the boots too vigorously. Doing so may damage the leather.

Warnings

  • Do not use polish or water on rawhide leather. Doing so may ruin the leather.