HIKING BOOT CARE:
A few minutes of care can extend the life of your boots.
Step 1: Clean mud and dirt off with warm water and a brush or rag.
Step 2: Use a boot cleaner such as NaturSeal® or Nikwax® and a brush to scrub your boots to deep clean the leather. This will remove imbedded dirt, waxes and oils. Allow the boot to dry thoroughly. Now the leather is ready for conditioning and waterproofing.
Step 3: Apply waterproofing and leather conditioner such as NaturSeal® or Nikwax® in either paste or liquid. Apply paste with your fingertips or use a dauper for liquid. Notice that the paste and liquid soaks into the leather immediately, particularly if leather is old, worn or dry. This will darken the leather. The darker color will fade back to original over time.
DO NOT HEAT!! Excessive heat will destroy the leather.
Step 4: Add a final coat of protection by applying a fabric guard such as NaturSeal® or Nikwax®. This is only necessary if the boot has fabric on the upper.
Walking in wet grass will wear away your waterproofing and conditioner very fast. Plan on applying it more often if you enjoy tromping through meadows early in the morning.
Do I need to treat leather boots that have a waterproof/breathable liner?
Yes, for two reasons. First, leather needs regular applications of conditioner to keep it from becoming dry and stiff. Second, your waterproof liner is under the leather. It will not prevent the leather from becoming saturated and heavy with water once the original waterproof coating wears off.
Courtesy of Vasque