What Is Patina? A Guide to Leather, Denim, and Watches

If you were to ask the average person on the street what ‘patina’ is, you’d likely get some variation of “Isn’t that when copper turns green?” The shortest answer is, yes, that is indeed one example of patina. However, this mystical buzz word is not limited to discolored metal and has far more power than … Read more

Here’s How to Get Salt Stains Out of Your Boots

A good friend and mentor of mine once told me that “if you take good care of your tools, then your tools will take good care of you”. This article is about how to get salt stains out of boots, but that happened when I was working as a camp guide, and I know this … Read more

Leather vs Suede vs Nubuck – Which Boots Should You Get?

Leather, suede, and nubuck: the three pillars of the quality boot world. Chances are, if you’re considering quality boots, they’re made of one of these three materials. But which is right for you? There’s a lot to consider when comparing leather vs suede vs nubuck: how hard you want to wear it, how much you’d … Read more

The Ultimate Guide to Mink Oil on Boots | Benefits, Alternatives, and More

So what is mink oil? Mink oil is a leather conditioner that is traditionally made from a mink’s abdomen fat. While it is mainly used by shoe enthusiasts and leather workers today, this oily balm has its roots in Native American material culture. Long ago, indigenous populations such as the Chippewa used mink oil as … Read more

Does It Matter If Your Leather Conditioner Has Petroleum?

If you’ve already invested in a pair of quality leather boots, you probably know how important leather conditioner is. A good conditioner will do a lot for you: smooth out small scratches and imperfections, soften and add suppleness, protect from salt and dirt, degrease and clean the surface, and revitalize the luster of the leather … Read more

Venetian Shoe Cream Review and How to Use

It’s fair to say that Venetian Shoe Cream is the go-to product for conditioning boots. Whether you’re talking about boots that are outdoorsy or dressy,  practically every company from so-so Thorogood to top-tier Viberg recommend you pair your purchase with a bottle of VSC. For this piece I interviewed Philip Collias, the CEO of the company that … Read more

Red Wing Boot Oil Vs. Mink Oil – What’s Best for Waterproofing and Maintaining Color?

Don’t make the same mistake I did. Don’t lose your Red Wings to the wrong conditioner. Take a look at these Red Wing Iron Rangers, perhaps the most beloved American heritage boot on the market. This is what they looked like when they arrived on my doorstep versus how they looked after applying a conditioner … Read more

3 Reasons You Need Cedar Shoe Trees

So, you’ve bought yourself a few pairs of high-quality leather boots. Congratulations! Your wardrobe and I thank you. Not only have you upped your fashion game, but you’ve made an investment in yourself, which is arguably one of the most empowering things you can do with your hard-earned cash. But now that you’ve spent the … Read more

The Right Way to Waterproof Nice Boots

If you own a quality pair of shoes and you know what you’re doing, then you make sure you condition the leather every few months. Leather, after all, is skin. Keeping it moist is a critical component of ensuring your boots last a long time, develop a patina, and maintain their lustre and depth of … Read more

How the Heck Do I Take Care of Chromexcel Leather?

These days, it seems like every other boot on the market is made from Chromexcel® leather. It’s on everything from mid-range boots like the Wolverine 1000 Mile and the Allen Edmonds Higgins Mill to $600+ boots like the Alden Indy 403 and the brown Viberg Service boot. Low-end, mid-range, and high-end boot companies alike are … Read more