Like our skin, leather goods, including jackets, gloves, and boots, require moisturizers to remain in good condition. But instead of regular skincare and beauty products, leather needs special moisturizers, such as the Huberd’s shoe grease – a product formulated from natural ingredients, including pine tar and beeswax.
In this Huberd’s shoe grease review, we’ll take an in-depth look at the composition of the special leather moisturizer, what it is good for, how to use it, its benefits and disadvantages, and more.
But first, let’s begin the review with a quick history of the company.
Brief History of Huberd’s Shoe Grease
Huberd Shoe Grease Company was founded in McMinnville, Oregon by J. W. Huberd, who concocted the pine tar and beeswax mix in his workshop in 1921. He aimed to introduce his formula to logging camps, selling his product to lumberjacks. All over the region, lumbermen helped Huberd improve upon his formula, creating a customer base and establishing what would turn out to be the basis of a thriving manufacturing company. Huberd’s Shoe Grease has been made the same way since.
Huberd’s Shoe Grease, to this day, is handcrafted in small batches using the original 1944 equipment. According to the company, every product with the Huberd name is poured, stacked, covered, and boxed by hand to ensure the original quality and consistency.
There is a small but dedicated team at Huberd, with a mission to ensure every batch is blended and measured just as J. W. Huberd intended for his customers’ leather goods. This attention to detail, ingredients, and fine blending ensures a consistent product is created to preserve leather and protect the family tradition of the business.
What Can Huberd’s Shoe Grease Do?
The shoe grease conditions leather and restores it while preserving breathability.
Its slightly smoky smell and appearance remind one of thick custard, which could be due to the pine tar. Nevertheless, you don’t have to worry about a lingering smell because it fades very quickly as it dries.
The boot wax with waterproofing quality is non-toxic and contains no animal fat, preservatives, or synthetic compounds, making it perfectly safe for expensive leather jackets and boots.
Here’s is a summary of what the product can do:
- It is capable of waterproofing your shoes to ensure they resist mud, sand, water, dirt, salt, soil, industrial grease, and chemicals.
- It stops damage to leather products by preventing cracks, spots, stains, and scars from forming.
- It helps prolong the life of leather boots and other leather products in general.
Ingredients in Huberd’s Shoe Grease
Huberd’s Shoe Grease is composed mainly of beeswax and pine tar. It does not include any preservatives or animal fats.
Pine tar from trees helps seal in cuts and gaps in surfaces. The tar has also been used to protect surfaces that regularly get wet such as boats.
Beeswax is a trusted shoe softening and shining ingredient. It is used in this formula to ensure your leather boots are soft to wear but shiny enough to protect them from the elements without looking dull.
The beeswax naturally has a high melting point, and when it becomes soft, you can rub it into the leather boots. When the beeswax hardens, it then creates a water-resistant barrier protecting the leather boots from the elements.
Unlike other leather products in the market, Huberd’s Shoe grease does not contain silicone, synthetic compounds, harsh chemicals, or other pollutants. It uses all-natural products.
Advantages of Huberd’s Shoe Grease
Huberd’s Shoe Grease offers plenty of benefits, some of which include:
- Still made by hand in Colorado, United States of America.
- Huberd’s Shoe Grease makes leather shine, unlike other natural waterproofing solutions that give leather goods a dull look.
- The product is affordable, and a pound of shoe grease can generously coat 30 pairs of boots, protecting them from the elements.
- Its use is not limited to shoes; you can use it on many other leather products.
- The product is known to protect stitching on leather and soles.
Disadvantages of Huberd’s Shoe Grease
While this shoe grease works wonders when used on leather boots, it is not without its drawbacks. A few of them are:
- Smell: The formula used to create Huberd’s Shoe Grease is a classic composition, with no innovative chemical finding its way into the mix. This adherence to strictly natural ingredients means that the shoe grease has a strong smell reminiscent of a campfire.
- That said, the strong smell doesn’t tend to stick to the leather past a couple of days. Users have to bear with the faint smell till it passes.
- Darkening: One of the known ingredients in Huberd’s Shoe Grease is tar, and this can cause your leather boots to darken. For this reason, it is best to use this shoe grease on darker boots only. While darker leather boots can have a few shades, lighter-colored boots will get significantly darker, possibly ruining their look. Keep in mind that darkening here doesn’t mean dull-looking boots.
- Slow absorption: Due to the mix of ingredients, Huberd’s Shoe Grease is not a product that disappears into leather or is instantly absorbed by the leather when applied. It usually takes a while – anywhere from 12 to 24 hours – for the grease to seep into the leather.
- Usage: Although some people use Huberd’s Shoe Grease for dress shoes with mixed results, it is important to note that the grease might be a tad too heavy-handed for leather shoes other than work boots.
With all the preliminaries out of the way, the rest of this Huberd’s Shoe Grease review will focus on applying the product to specific leather products and how to care for your boots after using the grease.
How to Apply Huberd’s Shoe Grease to Your Boots
Applying this product to leather is an easy process and takes only a few minutes.
- Remove shoelaces so the shoe grease can permeate every nook and cranny.
- Wipe down the leather boots using a dry brush. If the leather boots require deeper cleaning, use saddle soap to eliminate excess dirt and debris.
- The leather boots should be completely dry before applying the shoe grease.
- Mix the shoe grease for 30 seconds before applying it to the leather boot. Use a rag or small paintbrush to apply the mixed grease to the boots. Make sure to work the mix into the boot’s entire surface, paying particular attention to the seams, stitches, joints, and the meeting points of the sole. If necessary, use your hands to apply the grease to hard-to-reach areas. The more time you spend rubbing in the grease, the more it gets into the leather and produces better results.
- Your boots are not ready to be used just yet. Do not brush them at this point because that will make them messy.
- For the best results, consider heating or warming up the greased boots for a short time. But this doesn’t mean you should place them out in direct sunlight. Instead, allow them to catch the midday sun for a couple of hours.
- Allow them to dry overnight, making sure they are placed in a warm area to enable the grease to sip into the leather.
- After about 12 hours, you can clean off any shoe grease left on the boot’s surface to provide a nice, clear shine.
- You can choose to leave your leather boots to dry for a day or more, depending on how much Huberd’s Shoe Grease you rubbed in. What you shouldn’t do is place your boots near an open flame. While this can seem like a great idea to heat the grease, Huberd’s Shoe Grease is highly flammable due to the pine tar in the mix.
- Reapply the grease every couple of months to ensure long-lasting leather protection.
How to Care for Your Leather Boots after Using Huberd’s Shoe Grease
Remember to wipe your leather boots clean using a damp piece of cloth at least once a week. However, the cleaning frequency depends on where you use the boots and how often you use them.
For example, you will need to wipe your boots more frequently if you work in a dusty or muddy environment.
For best results, consider greasing your leather boots once every 3 to 6 months. If you prefer softer leather boots, you can shorten the time between rubbings. Always dry your leather boots outside in the shade when they get wet. Refrain from placing them out in direct sunlight because this can damage the leather over time.
Consider using Huberd’s Shoe Grease every few months, especially if you walk a lot in your boots. If your job requires you to be out and about in the sun, it will be best to rub your leather boots down with the wax every month to ensure they remain shiny and soft.
What Can Huberd’s Shoe Grease Be Used On?
Considering that this shoe grease lasts long, it is easy to determine that it is safe to use on nearly every leather product.
The product is so good that both fake and patent leather items that require a bit more sun protection and waterproofing can benefit from a coat of Huberd’s Shoe Grease. People use this shoe grease on tent lining and boat vinyl, two surfaces that contact water regularly. The result is complete waterproofing for both surfaces.
Some of the leather goods you can use the shoe grease on include:
- Tent stitching
- Boots and shoes
- Boats, hot tub, and car vinyl
- Leather car seats and leather jackets
- Leather hats, belts, and biker gloves
- Leather headphones
- Leather lounge chairs
In a nutshell, any product made from leather can benefit from the protective properties of Huberd’s Shoe Grease. In addition to protecting leather goods, it also boosts longevity.
What You Should Never Use On Your Leather Boots
There are a few myths that have made the rounds for years concerning leather care. One of the more popular ones is the use of olive oil to care for your leather boots. This myth has persisted because olive oil is known as the poor man’s leather conditioner.
But here’s the thing: you should never use olive oil as a conditioner for leather boots because doing so can stain the boots over time and make them look darker in an awful way.
Although black leather shoes may not tan and stain as much as brown shoes, olive oil is still a poor choice of leather care product. You should only use olive oil on your leather boots is when you don’t have any good quality grease at hand, and you need to grease your boots. But it is crucial to wipe off the oil the very next day.
For the best leather boot care and quality protection over a long period, you should always stick with a high-quality leather conditioner like Huberd’s Shoe Grease. It has beeswax, which is a strong waterproofing ingredient.
Leather boots, particularly outdoorsy and leather work boots, are usually the last things we think to take care of. Hopefully, this Huberd’s Shoe Grease review will help you to take that little extra step that can make your boots last at least two to three times longer.
Doing this has the dual effect of making your boots a lot more comfortable while also saving you money on replacements. A simple routine of rubbing Huberd’s Shoe Grease into your leather boots every three to six months can be the difference between leather shoes that last long or boots that struggle with cracking and drying.