The Hollis Black, a work and dress boot hybrid from HELM

The Best Way to Stretch Leather Boots

Why a small pinch or early discomfort isn't a dealbreaker.

All the different ways to stretch your footwear.

Leather care that can speed up the break-in process.

Most leather footwear isn't a perfect fit on the first wear. Read on to learn how to approach your new pair of leather boots.

Note: We offer free shipping, exchanges, and returns. All first-time customers get 10% off their first order using the code WELCOME

Leather stretches as you break in your boots but sometimes it helps to stretch outside of normal wear

You have boots that look gorgeous from a distance and even better up close. These boots are a perfect match to suit your personality, style, and purpose – the perfect pair of leather footwear that you spent a lot of time researching before your purchase. That's what makes it so hard when you feel a pinch or any discomfort when you wear them. You know they're the right size but they still feel a little tight in places.

Want an option that requires minimal stretching? Try The Hynes, our softest, most comfortable leather boot.

The good news is most tightness is normal, but you need to be proactive about breaking in or getting a good stretch in your leather

Finding and acquiring the best-fitting leather boots can take awhile, and while there might be some initial disappointment, a small pinch is not a deal-breaker.

For the correct footwear to be the perfect fit, there are a number of factors that come into play:

  1. There should be no shooting pain.
  2. Your toes should have no trouble fitting in.
  3. The same applies to the width and length of your feet, although in these areas it is a lot easier to stretch your boots.

There are a number of ways to ensure you have the perfect fit. However, the best way to stretch leather boots will depend on where the troubled area is and which method you choose to use. You can make use of stretching tools or you can use one of the DIY methods that is outlined below. You can always take your footwear to a professional to get a recommendation and expertise.

Ultimately, some methods may require more time than others to ensure that perfect fit. 

There are a number of alternative stretching tools that promise quality results. Some tools or devices may work better than others. Primarily, it is best to go for methods that have the most proven reviews, associated with any given style. If you're ever unsure, ask us!

How to Stretch Your Leather Boots

Using Tools:

  • Boot stretcher and calf stretcher: You can make use of a boot stretcher and calf stretcher to help stretch your boots. The boot stretcher will stretch the foot area of your boots when you feel tightness along the tops or sides of your feet, while the calf stretcher will stretch the calf section of your boots when you have a higher profile style and need some more room from the ankle up.
  • Stretching liquid or spray: You can make use of shoe stretching liquid to help soften your boots thus allowing you room to “break them in." For this method to work, you'll have to wear the shoes while still wet from the liquid. As a tip, it is better to spray inside the boots in order to avoid damaging the outside.

DIY methods:

DIY methods may be on the slow side but they can also be effective. You can make use of:

  • Ice to stretch your boots. Freezing your boots can help expand them. This is because when water is frozen, it expands and in the process, your boots are also expanded. When using this method, however, it is important to ensure that you don’t get your boots wet. For this to happen, you can make good use of sandwich bags to store the water before placing them into the boots and sticking them in the freezer. This way, you avoid discoloring your boots.
  • Heat can also help stretch boots. For this method to work, you will have to wear a pair of thick socks and then proceed to blow dry over the tight spots with a hairdryer.
  • Last but not least, you can stuff your boots with materials such as rolled up towels, old newspapers or any other material that may help stretch the boots.

Through our experience, these are some of the best methods available, and these are some of our best styles:

The next time you purchase these stylish and popular boots from HELM, you no longer need to worry about that irritating pinch. With one or two of the methods mentioned above, you should be able to enjoy the perfect comfort fit of your boots. 

There's a wide range and selection of stylish and practical boots to choose from here at HELM. So go right ahead and order the correct boots that match your style and personality.

If you're looking to ease the break-in period of your boots, we recommend Blackrock Leather 'N Rich, our best-selling leather conditioner that hydrates and conditions leather, softening it for an easier fit and quicker mold to your foot.

Now you know the best way to stretch leather boots, why not buy a new pair. Purchase with confidence, knowing that you will get that perfect fit.

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