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How to Shrink Cleats

Updated February 21, 2017

Cleats refer to a specific type of athletic shoe used most often for soccer or baseball. The shoe consists of a typical leather sports shoe with moulded plastic studs on the bottom that provide traction on grass or muddy turf. An improper fit will cause blisters or other injuries as the shoes will slip off your feet. Shrinking the leather allows the cleats to truly fit like a glove as the leather moulds around your foot.

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  1. Spray the surface area of your cleats evenly with a leather protector spray. This will prevent the leather from warping when you do submerge them in water. Allow the leather protector to dry and fully penetrate for at least two hours.

  2. Fill a basin with warm water. Submerge your cleats in the water, until they are fully saturated. This will cause the leather to shrink and pucker slightly.

  3. Set your cleats on a towel in direct sunlight until they dry. The sun will not only dry them, but will facilitate the shrinking process even more. To speed the process, you can shake the excess water off your cleats and then put them in the dryer.

  4. Put the shoes on once they've dried completely. Your foot and toes will push against the leather, forcing it to mould to your foot. Since the leather remains stretchable, no danger of shrinking the shoes too much exists.

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Things You'll Need

  • Leather protector spray
  • Basin
  • Towel
  • Dryer

About the Author

Lane Cummings is originally from New York City. She attended the High School of Performing Arts in dance before receiving her Bachelor of Arts in literature and her Master of Arts in Russian literature at the University of Chicago. She has lived in St. Petersburg, Russia, where she lectured and studied Russian. She began writing professionally in 2004 for the "St. Petersburg Times."

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