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What To Do With New Cowboy Boots?

What To Do With New Cowboy Boots?

Well, the moment of unboxing and putting on new cowboy boots for the first time is always exciting. I have never forgotten every second of it in the last 15 years!

However, for those are new to cowboy boots, those moments will be followed by tons of questions. One of which is, what should I do first with my new cowboy boots?

Well, don’t worry too much, today’s article will tell you what you need to do! From fitting tests to new cowboy boot care!

Let’s start!

What To Do With New Cowboy Boots?

When you put on your new cowboy boots for the first time, the first thing you need to do is to check if they cause you pain or discomfort.

Then some gentle care will be the essentials for a new pair of cowboy boots!

Check the fit by your sense

If cowboy boots are completely comfortable, great, nothing more to say! However, one can hardly encounter such a lucky situation. New cowboy boots will usually come with a bit of stiffness, a bit of pain, a bit of heel slip, and maybe a little bit of tightness.

If you feel one or all of the above, don’t worry or return it, as it’s normal in new cowboy boots and the sensations usually go away after the break-in period.

a girl is wearing a new pair of cowboy boots

Cowboy boots are made from 100% leather so they are usually quite stiff at first because that is the nature of leather. But the good thing is that leather tends to soften over time.

So, you just need to put effort into wearing them regularly from 1 week to 10 days, cowboy boots will be comfortable, don’t rush to return them to bootmakers.

There is still another case where cowboy boots are completely uncomfortable, you feel they make you too painful or cramped when wearing them. In this case, the best way is to return them immediately.

Most of these cowboy boots may not fit your foot size, don’t fit your wide foot, or don’t provide enough support for your high arch, etc.

Don’t try to do any tips or hacks to stretch or soften cowboy boots, it’s unnecessary. If you apply alcohol or leather stretch spray to cowboy boots, it can cause them to lose their original color (darker) and make it more difficult to return them to the manufacturer.

Again, even during the aforementioned break-in cowboy boots, do it with your feet and don’t apply any internet tips. To ensure your comfort, wear a pair of socks that are thick and higher than your calves during break-in period.

In addition, if you own leather sole boots and want to increase grip by rubbing the leather sole on concrete, hold on, it’s not the right time! You must first evaluate your cowboy boots.

If they are totally comfortable and you are sure you won’t return them to the bootmakers, then you can do anything you want. Otherwise, if the bootmaker sees that the leather sole is too scratched, they can refuse the return.

Take care of them, but not too much

What you need to pay attention to at this time is not to care for new cowboy boots too much.

I know what it feels like to hold a new pair of cowboy boots. I also understand the precious feeling of owning an expensive staple, but always be careful when using it.

man wears beautiful cowboy boots tapered at the toe

The familiar caring tasks that you often do are cleaning, conditioning, and polishing cowboy boots. Even so, you should only lightly clean cowboy boots at first, especially within 30 days.

30 days is the allotted time bootmakers give you to return unsatisfied products. Conditioners or polishes are products that often change the original color of new cowboy boots, making it difficult for you to return them.

Normally, I wouldn’t use cowboy boots to do heavy work on the ranch right away. I would spend 10 to 15 days on casual wear to make sure they break in and are completely comfortable. Then I increased the frequency of use, but not really too much in the first 30 days.

Stay away from rain and snowfall, as they are not good for cowboy boots. Also, avoid using waterproof spray because it also tends to darken cowboy boots.

I usually take a damp cloth or horsehair brush to dust them off when needed, but never apply a leather cleaner. Anything like conditioner or polish should only be applied after 2 to 3 months of using cowboy boots.

What can and cannot be used on New Cowboy Boots

As a matter of fact, most new cowboy boots are in very good condition, you don’t have to worry about them drying out or cracking in the first 2 to 3 months.

Each type of exotic leather will have a different period of time for conditioning, but I have not seen any leather that needs to be conditioned or polished after 15 days of wearing.

Ostrich boots are usually the type of boots that need the most conditioning to keep their color from fading, but it usually takes up to 2 months to do that.

The most important thing during this time is to keep the shape of cowboy boots upright, without being bent or broken. This ensures cowboy boots are always in good condition and can be easily exchanged when needed.

You can use boot trees, boot shapers, or boot racks to do these things.

Mens boot tree from Tecovas

Image copyright Tecovas Boot Company | #CommissionEarned | Click image for more info

You should also keep cowboy boots dry during this time, if they, unfortunately, get wet, dry them early with a boot dryer, wind from a fan, or hair dryer (at a moderate temperature).

After 30 days, you should also use a waterproof spray to protect cowboy boots from rain or snow outside.

That’s all you need to keep in mind!


In general, with new cowboy boots, you need to pay attention to the following things:

  • If cowboy boots are completely comfortable, then there is no need to worry about the fit anymore. But if you feel a bit uncomfortable because of a little stiffness or heel slip, calm down and break in them by wearing a pair of thick socks, the sensations will disappear after about 10 days.
  • If you can’t tolerate your new cowboy boots, return them if possible, and don’t use any tips or hacks to fix them. For leather soles, don’t rush to break them in early until you feel completely comfortable wearing the boots.
  • Leather conditioner or polish should only be applied after 2 to 3 months of wearing cowboy boots. Because new cowboy boots are usually already in good condition. Besides, using the above products can darken cowboy boots and make it difficult for you to get a refund.
  • Make sure cowboy boots are dry and in good shape so that they can be easily exchanged if you want. This also ensures the cowboy boots are more durable and beautiful. Taking care of cowboy boots is a good thing, but don’t overdo it.

That’s all you need to know!