How To Shrink Leather Shoes with Vinegar?  

How To Shrink Leather Shoes with Vinegar?

Perhaps you’ve ever owned a pair of leather shoes that became too stretched over time. Maybe you have bought leather shoes and found that the shoe is too big for your feet.

It can be frustrating to have these experiences, but there are ways to make them more comfortable. Vinegar can shrink leather shoes!

Vinegar is a mild acid made from the fermentation of alcohol. Vinegar is well-known for its use in sauces and cooking and is a cleaning agent that can remove stubborn stains and smears. Most people are unaware that Vinegar can also shrink leather.

Using Vinegar to SHRINK LEATHER

One of the most common materials used for making shoes is leather. It is flexible, breathable, and elastic. Many people prefer leather shoes for their durability, mildness, and comfort. It can, however, shrink or stretch due to its malleable nature.

Vinegar shrinks leather when it is soaked in it. This is a great way to shrink leather shoes that are too loose.

These materials are required to do so:

White Vinegar (Apple cider Vinegar may be substituted)

Pair of cotton socks

Large ceramic or plastic bowl


The white Vinegar should be poured into a bowl. Next, place the cotton socks in the bowl and let them soak for a while. Next, put the socks in the leather shoes. Don’t try to get the Vinegar out by wringing the socks.

Let the vinegar drip inside the boots. Allow the socks to sit in the shoes for at least two hours so that the Vinegar can penetrate the leather.

Finally, remove the socks and dry the shoes in direct sunlight. This will shrink the shoes and speed up drying. If the weather isn’t favorable, dry your boots with a blower or in a warm place in your home.

After drying, you can put your shoes on and verify that they fit correctly. You can shrink the leather further if your shoes are still too loose.

Essential Points to Keep in Mind When Wearing Shrinking Leather Shoes

Leather cracks can be caused by prolonged exposure to the sun. Check the shoes you have left out in the sun every once in a while. Once the leather has dried completely, you can remove it immediately.

Turn the blow dryer down to the lowest setting to dry leather shoes. While drying your boots, keep the dryer at 6 inches from them. This will ensure that your leather shoes are not damaged or burned.

After shrinking your shoes, you might want to apply leather conditioner. This will smoothen the leather and protect it from drying out. It also prevents cracks.


Will Vinegar Cause Damage to Leather Shoes?

Vinegar is a well-known cleaning agent. It is understandable to be concerned that Vinegar could cause damage to your leather shoes. Vinegar is safe and won’t cause any damage to your leather shoes. White Vinegar is the best choice.

This is the one you use to cook. Do not dilute the Vinegar with water. Water and leather don’t mix well. Water can make leather stiff, especially if the shoes are not weatherproofed.

Is Vinegar safe to clean leather shoes?

To clean faux leather shoes and patent leather, you can also use Vinegar. To do this, dip a cloth into a solution containing one part vinegar and one part water.

Use the material to clean any dirt from the leather shoes. Do not worry about cleaning the leather shoes with Vinegar and water. The shoes will not be damaged by the water you use to soak them in.

Will my Leather Shoes Smell if I Use Vinegar?

Vinegar is a great deodorizing agent. Vinegar can have a strong smell that some people may find unpleasant. After soaking your shoes, Vinegar will inevitably linger in the boots.

However, the smell will soon disappear once the shoes are dried. Vinegar can also be used to remove unpleasant odors from your shoes.

You can make a natural deodorizing solution by combining 1/2 cup white vinegar, several drops of tea tree essential oil, and 1/2 cup water. This spray can remove unpleasant odors from all shoes, including leather.

Spray the solution onto a clean cloth, and wipe the shoe’s inside. This will keep your shoes clean and free from odors. The exterior of your shoes should not be sprayed after drying your boots; air dries or dries them in the sun.

Is it possible to shrink my leather shoes with water?

Water can be used to shrink leather shoes, but it is dangerous. Although water and leather do not go together, it does not mean that water can cause the leather to crack.

Most leather shoes, mainly patent leather, can withstand water exposure. Apply a leather protector solution if unsure if your leather footwear has been treated.

For a few seconds, soak the shoes in water. Follow the dry-cleaning instructions. Do not soak your shoes in too much water. Although this method may give you the desired results, we have found that shrinking with Vinegar is the most effective.


Leather shoes are durable and can last long if you take care of them. Leather is flexible and can become softened over time. This could make your shoes feel a little looser after prolonged use. Shoes that are too tight to the foot can be uncomfortable.

Vinegar can be used to shrink leather shoes. This will give you the exact snug fit as your new shoes. It won’t cause any harm to your leather shoes and will effectively eliminate the foul odor.

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