If you must wear your new pair of cowboy boots the following day, what do you do? You must learn how to break in cowboy boots overnight.
And that is why you are reading this article regarding the same.
Like most boots, your Lucchese cowboy boots will not fit right out of the box. However, that does not mean that they do not come true to size because they do.
It is only that when they are new, they might pinch here and there for a week or so, until they conform to the shape of your feet.
But even a week is too long to wait. You need to break them in a day or even less. At least, you can have them fitting snugly.
Does Leather Stretch Easily?
Most of the methods for how to break in leather boots involve making them stretch. However, many people cannot help asking whether leather stretches.
After all, it looks and feels so tough!
But leather, be it cowhide, snake skin, alligator skin, buffalo skin or any other does stretch. All types of animal leather stretch to some degree without facing any danger of the fibers breaking.
That being said though, you should not overstretch the boots because the fibers can reach their breaking point when stretched too much.
So, how long does it take to break in cowboy boots? It should take a couple of days to a week or so. However, when you have to wear them the following day, you don’t have the luxury of time. Therefore, you must know how to break in tight boots fast, overnight.
Steps for How To Break In Cowboy Boots Overnight
Investing in a new pair of Ariat cowboy boots for your ranch work gives a very good feeling. However, these boots can really pinch when they are new. So, how do you go about breaking them in so that you can wear them the following day with considerable fit and comfort?
We have discussed methods of breaking in leather boots in other articles before. Some of them include dunking the boots in water, wearing them with thick socks, applying heat onto the pinching areas and so on. However, some of these methods may not work when you have to wear the boots the following day. So, the methods for how to break in Ariat boots, or any other brand of cowboy boots that we will discuss here are fast, less messy and effective.
1. How to stretch cowboy boots using ice
This is one of the most effective methods and used well and keenly, it is not going to get your cowboy boots wet.
What do you need?
You just need a couple of plastic bags. Fill them halfway with water so that there is some space left for the water to spread in the bag. Remove the insoles and then drop the plastic bag inside the boots. Push it in so that it reaches to the ball of foot area or it goes to the toe box if need be.
To be doubly sure that you don’t get your boots wet, you can use a second plastic paper bag over the one with water.
With the water inside the boots, place them in a plastic container and then leave them in the freezer section of your fridge for 8 hours or more.
If you remember your physics, when water turns into ice, it expands. Therefore, when it expands, it will force the leather fibers to stretch.
Leave the boots in the freezer for 8 or more hours. By morning, they will have expanded nicely. Remove the ice and wear the boots to work.
The good thing with this method for breaking in cowboy boots is that it is clean, well, as long as the boots were clean. If they do not stretch enough the first time, you can repeat the same process the following night.
2. How to break in leather boots using a hairdryer
Every home has a hairdryer. As it turns out, this tool does more than just dry the hair. It is also very useful for softening cowboy boots and getting them to stretch amply.
So that they can stretch, you need to know how to soften leather cowboy boots. If the boots are ill fitting all over the feet, perhaps this is not the method to use. However, if they just feel too tight at some selected spots, you can use directed heat from the hairdryer to soften them.
Some of the areas that you can use the hairdryer on include the toes, the heel and the sides of the foot. If this is your predicament, this tool is going to help you.
Direct the heat at the tight areas
Turn on the heat to slightly below medium, and then hold it at least 7 inches away from the spot that you want to stretch. Hold the hairdryer in the same position for a minute or so until you feel that the leather has softened enough.
With a pair of thick socks on your feet, wear the boots while they are still warm and walk about with the house with them. It can take them several minutes to cool down, and by then they will have stretched.
If you feel them fitting your feet albeit snugly with the thick socks on, chances are that they will fit well with regular cowboy socks.
You can repeat this process a few times until the boots stretch enough. Don’t be tempted to wear the boots to bed though.
3. Using a cowboy boot stretcher
As a true boot aficionado, you may have a boot stretcher at home. If you do, this tool is very handy for stretching leather boots. However, if you don’t have it, well, you can skip this section.
So what is a cowboy boot stretcher? This is a tool that is shaped like a boot. It has an adjusting mechanism that enables it to expand sideways. As it expands, it will exert pressure to the leather forcing the fibers to stretch. If you leave it in the boot for a couple of hours, they will stretch enough to give you basic comfort.
It is recommended that you adjust the boot stretcher to the maximum; of course depending on what you feel would be enough stretch for your boots.
You can then leave the stretcher inside the boots overnight so that it stretches the leather enough. By morning, you will be able to wear the boots comfortably.
4. How to stretch cowboy boots using alcohol
Alcohol is very good for softening leather. In fact, you can also use wine to do this job. The good thing about using alcohol is that it does not become messy. It evaporates fast and so you do not need to wait for your boots to dry.
There is a small downside though … it cannot help with boots that are too tight. However, if they pinch around the edges or the small toe a bit, you can use alcohol.
So how do you use alcohol to stretch new boots? It is simple. Dab it onto the shoes with cotton wool or a piece of cloth. It is best that you do this with the boots on your feet. Wear the boots with socks to force them to stretch.
When you apply the alcohol on the leather, walk about the room to make them fit more comfortably. If they were not too tight, this is going to work.
You can repeat the process to get the fibers to soak with alcohol. It makes them flexible enough to stretch. After the alcohol dries up, the fibers will not shrink.
Things to avoid when breaking in cowboy boots overnight
Obviously, you need to wear the boots the following day. Therefore, there are a few things to avoid:
Soaking boots to break them in
Do not immerse the boots in water because even with a store-bought boot dryer, they will not be dry by morning so that you can wear them. In addition, using water to stretch boots is messy and you do not want to mess up your new boots.
Steaming the inside of the boots
Steaming the interior is one of the best ways for how to break in new boots. However, it is almost similar to getting your boots in water. Therefore, they will never dry in time to wear them the following day. Besides, it is a messy process, similar to breaking in boots with water.
That is all there is for how to break in cowboy boots overnight. These are just 4 effective methods but again, what you choose depends on how snug or tight your boots feel.
Our method of choice would be the ice method. It is cool, simple, effective and the results are forever. Just wake up to an expanded boot, thaw some of the ice out a bit and then remove it completely.
However, if you have boot stretchers at home, use them. Leave them overnight in the boots and by morning, the leather will have stretched enough to give you comfort.
How to stretch cowboy boots is that simple really.