How to Soften Leather Shoelaces

by Kathryn Hatter

Shoelaces made from leather are an attractive and durable choice for shoes. One difficulty with using leather shoelaces, however, is that they are typically quite stiff and will not bend and tie easily when they are new. There are several methods that can help to soften leather shoelaces and make them easy to bend and tie. Try one or more of these methods for softening leather shoelaces.

Items you will need

  • Shaving cream
  • Washcloth
  • Clean cloth
  • Mink oil
Step 1

Work the shoelaces with your hands. Work one shoelace at a time and spend time bending, knotting, kneading, wadding and squeezing the shoelace in your hands. After this has been done sufficiently, the leather shoelaces will soften and become more pliable. This works by breaking down the fibers of the leather. Work both shoelaces equally for best results.

Step 2

Squirt a small dollop of shaving cream into the center of the washcloth and allow the shaving cream to soak into the wash cloth. Pass the soaked wash cloth along the entire length of both shoelaces and allow the shaving cream to dampen the shoelaces. Work the shoelaces by bending them to get the fibers to begin to break down while the shoelaces are damp from the shaving cream. Let the shoelaces dry. Repeat this, as necessary, until the shoelaces are as soft as desired.

Step 3

Rub a small amount of mink oil onto the entire length of the leather shoelaces. As you are rubbing the mink oil in, work the shoelaces to help the fibers begin to break down. Work the mink oil in for 10 to 15 minutes, and then pass a dry cloth along the length of the shoelaces to remove any excess mink oil. Repeat this as often as desired until the shoelaces are soft.

About the Author

Kathryn Hatter is a veteran home-school educator, as well as an accomplished gardener, quilter, crocheter, cook, decorator and digital graphics creator. As a regular contributor to Natural News, many of Hatter's Internet publications focus on natural health and parenting. Hatter has also had publication on home improvement websites such as Redbeacon.