The best way to clean leather football boots

Updated March 23, 2017

Football requires boots to play on grass and in sometimes muddy and wet conditions. The boot uppers are often made from leather because of the material's comfort, strength and ability to resist damage. If you follow a few essential steps, cleaning leather football boots can be quick and painless. Maintaining an appropriate cleaning regimen will mean a longer life for your boots.

Remove dirt, mud or dust from your boots by banging them against the ground or another flat surface to knock the gunk off. Hose the boots down to get rid of the bulk of the grime, then wipe the boots with a damp cloth and some washing-up liquid. For hard-to-remove grime, squirt 60 to 90 ml (2 to 3 oz) of leather cleaner designed specifically for high-quality leathers on your boots and rub with a clean, soft cloth.

Scrub your boots with a toothbrush for detailed cleaning, particularly along the stitching and around and between the studs.

Allow your boots to dry. Stuff them with newspaper to help absorb moisture. Leather boots should be dried naturally, without any artificial heat, so they retain their shape, flexibility and longevity. If possible, remove the sock liners while the boots are drying.

Condition your boots. After you have cleaned them, rub in some wax-free leather conditioner. This will help preserve the softness of the leather and prolong the life of your boots. Even high-quality leather boots will fray and tear if they're not maintained properly.


Never use household cleaners or harsh chemical products to clean your boots. They will destroy the leather.

Things You'll Need

  • Washing-up liquid
  • Cloths
  • Leather cleaner
  • Newspaper
  • Leather conditioner
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About the Author

Nicole Long is a freelance writer based in Cincinnati, Ohio. With experience in management and customer service, business is a primary focus of her writing. Long also has education and experience in the fields of sports medicine, first aid and coaching. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in economics from the University of Cincinnati.