How to darken leather boots

How to darken leather boots

Leather boots are considered to be the cult of fashion era and are ultra-trendy silhouettes that have the power to get some heads turning in your direction. Leather has a contemporary and yet a vintage feel to it. Partnering your leather boots with semi casual and casual ensembles can uplift the mood and amplify your persona.  

Leather boots are timeless pieces of footwear that were created to blend in any season with a cool panache and urban simplicity. They define style and glamor and have become the symbols of fashion and integrity. And this is the reason why leather boots have a higher price tag.  

But like other materials, even leather tends to wear off with time losing its shine and patina gradually. Since leather boots have cost you a fortune, refurbishing your old besties would not only revive them but also save you on expenses.  

If you own leather boots need restoration, one of the easiest ways to revitalize their appearance would be to darken them. this will grant them a burnished patina and make them look vintage and as good as new. Read on to figure out how to darken leather boots using simple and foolproof hacks. 

Clean the boots before you experiment with hacks: 

To make the process of darkening the leather more effective, you need to clean the leather first. For this you will need: 

  • Bristle brush 
  • Dishwasher detergent or leather cleaner 
  • 2 clean cloths 


  1. With the help of a bristle brush, gently wipe away the dust and debris. 
  1. Dampen the cloth with water and apply a single drop of detergent on the cloth. Rub the cloth on the shoes gently so that a lather forms.  
  1. Now with the help of the other clean, damp cloth, wipe away the lather on the shoes. Keep the shoes in a well-ventilated place to dry them out. 

Your leather boots are now ready to take a beating. You can try any of the four, below-mentioned methods of darkening leather boots and transforming the scarred and lackluster shade to a rich and darker hue. 


Darken your leather boots with oil: 

 Mink oil, neatsfoot oil and coconut oil are great options when it comes to conditioning, enhancing and darkening the leather. Tap their utility potential to darken your leather fabric. Follow the simple steps below: 


  1. Take a microfiber cloth and apply one teaspoon of any of the above listed leather oils on it. Gently scrub a small section of the boots one at a time in back and forth motion so that the oil is applied in an even layer. 
  1. If while rubbing and polishing the leather surface, you come to realize that the oil that you applied is not enough, you can add more drops to the cloth.  
  1. After applying the first layer, keep the boots in a well-ventilated place overnight to dry them out. You will perceive, that the leather is richer and darker in appearance than before. However, if you want your boots to be darker, then you can apply more coats of oil. But remember to allow the leather to dry out before applying additional coats of oil. 



A word of caution 

Avoid over-saturating the leather with oil coatings so as to prevent the leather losing its durability and firmness.  

Coffee can darken the leather: 

Coffee is one of the most popular household items that is employed in many home remedies. And everyone is stocked up on this essential addictive, aromatic and enriching beverage. You can employ this chemical free ingredient to darken your leather boots with ease and simplicity. 

Items you need: 

  • Instant or classic coffee 
  • Water 
  • Strainer  
  • Microfiber clean cloth 
  • Leather conditioner 


  1. Add water to the grounded coffee and bring to boil. Make sure that your coffee is strong enough. Let it sit for 10 minutes to cool it down.  
  1. You can apply the coffee by dipping a soft-bristled brush in the coffee pot and scouring the leather fabric with this cloth. Work on small parts and apply an even layer of coffee. Let it dry for 12 hours. If the leather hasn’t reached the desired shade, you can apply more coatings of coffee to amplify the intensity of the shade.  
  1. Once your leather is completely dry, burnish your leather boots with the leather conditioner to restore the shine and reinstate the natural oils that were exhausted during this process. 

Walnut hulls can come in handy: 

Walnut hulls are natural remedies that can assist you in darkening the leather. 

Items you will need: 

  • Walnut hulls 
  • Gloves and apron 
  • Strainer 
  • Small container 
  • A clean cloth 
  • Leather conditioner 


  1. Place all the walnut hulls in a container and fill it with water. Leave it for two to three weeks. The longer the hulls remain steeped in water, the darker and stronger is the color of dye going to be.  
  1. Ensure that you are wearing gloves and apron before continuing with this process because walnut hulls can leave permanent marks on your clothes. 
  1. Strain the water using the strainer. You can either get rid of the hulls or keep them for future use.  
  1. Apply this water on the leather boots with the help of a clean cloth. You can apply multiple layers of this water. However, ensure that you allow ample time for the leather to dry out and let the magic of the walnut hulls work through.  
  1. After drying out the boots, apply a leather conditioner to revive the gloss and patina of the leather fabric. 


Polish those boots: 

Polishing is a surefire way to bring a glossy and lustrous sheen to your leather boots. It generates instantaneous results and effectively causes your leather boots to darken up into a rich and luxurious shade. 

Items you will need: 

  • Brown polish 
  • Brush Applicator  
  • Dry microfiber cloth 


  1. Using circular motions, apply the polish evenly on the entire surface of the boots. 
  1. You will be able to perceive a very visible and favorable change after two coats. However, you can add more coats if you aren’t still satisfied with the shade. 
  1. Once done, buff up the surface of your boots with the microfiber cloth. This will even out the tone of the polish and make the leather look sleek, shiny and smooth.  
  1. Let the boots dry overnight.