As we head into the winter season – sure to be a cold one if last winter was any indication – you’ve probably already pulled out your favorite sheepskin boots from storage, only to find that they are a little grimy…er, well-worn. Lucky for you, genuine sheepskin will last a lifetime if you care for it properly, and the same is true for our Minnetonka shearling boots, which feature a soft suede upper and a sheepskin and wool blend lining. Sheepskin is a natural, durable material that can easily withstand the elements, which is why shearling boots are so popular for winter wear. Care for them the right way, and you can enjoy the same pair of sheepskin boots for years to come!
For those of you who own a pair of authentic sheepskin boots, you know that they are so incredibly warm and comfortable, you’d be hard pressed to trade them in for anything else during the winter, especially when the temperatures drop and it feels like the chill is reaching right through to your bones. Unfortunately, that also means that your sheepskin boots see a lot of wear during the winter, when the mix of snow, dirt, gravel and salt leaves a layer of grime on your shoes that seems impenetrable. Not so!
With the right sheepskin care and cleaning tips, you can transform your well-worn shearling boots from soiled and grubby to clean and pristine, and make them look great and last as long as you need them to. We recommend two products when cleaning or caring for sheepskin, and protecting the natural material from future damage – a rain and stain shield made for suede or leather for the outside and a mild detergent to clean the wool on the inside. If you’ve noticed that your sheepskin boots have become dirty, soiled or water-spotted, a suede conditioner or cleaner should do the trick.
To clean your sheepskin boots, hand blot the area with a rag, mild detergent (or your everyday hair shampoo) and cold water, being careful not to soak through to the suede. Then carefully rinse and hand blot the excess moisture using a clean, dry towel, and let the boots air dry. Brush the wool when it is nearly dry to fluff it back up. If your sheepskin boots are exceptionally soiled, your best bet might be to take them to a dry cleaner that specializes in leather and/or furs. Also, if your shearling boots ever become significantly wet, it’s best to let them dry slowly over time, without placing them in direct heat, which can damage the sheepskin.
One of the most important things to remember about sheepskin, is that you should try to clean the spot or stain as soon as it occurs, rather than letting it set over time. So, at the end of this winter, when you get ready to pack away your shearling boots in favor of flip-flops, remember to treat any grime or stains right away, so when you pull them back out next winter, your shearling boots are good as new!