How to Remove Deep Scratches from Leather Shoes

On leather boots, scratches and scruffs are unsightly marks. They not only put a damper on your style but they can also expose the underlying layers of the fabric to destructive elements such s oil and grime. But those minor scratches shouldn’t mean you dump your hardly used boots for a new pair. After all, leather boots relatively expensive and should thus serve you for a prolonged duration.

How to Remove Deep Scratches from Leather Shoes

To save your newly scratched boots and your wallet too, here are simple DIY steps you can use to get mask those foul scratches.

Reasons You Should Treat the Scratches Immediately

Scratches harbor dust

Regardless of how minute the scratch is, it allows dust to settle thus blocking pores that allow leather to breathe. Over time, this dirt affects the strength of leather fiber leading to gapping cracks.  

Scratches make the fabric more permeable

Deep seated scratches weaken the fiber of the leather thus making it more permeable to moisture. As you already aware, moisture won’t just make it your shoe uncomfortable to wear but lead to cracking once it dries up.

Scratched boot looks old and unusable 

If you don’t treat the scratches right away, there is a possibility you’ll opt to use your others shoes in place of the boots. This means you will nourish the boots less often. The leather will dry up and disintegrate than if you were conditioning it appropriately.

The A-Z Guide on Fixing Scratches on Leather Boots

Method 1: Using White Vinegar

What you’ll need:

– An old rug/piece of cloth

-White vinegar

-Leather nourisher

Step one: dip the rug in vinegar then rub the scratched area in circular motion. Leave the shoe to sit for 30 minutes then repeat the process one more time.

Step two: put the shoe in a well ventilated space and leave for a day. The surface around the scratches will have swollen slightly thus masking the scratch out of view.

Step 3: apply a water proofing conditioner to complete the process.

Kindly note you can use olive oil in place of white vinegar.

Method 2:   Sealing with a Glue

What you’ll require:

  • Super glue
  • Piece of cloth
  • Sand paper
  • Color polish
  • Nourisher

Step 1: clean the boot

To ensure the adhesives work as expected, you should first the clean the surfaces to be repaired and ensure they are sufficiently dry. Cleaning removes dirt that can weaken the bond between the surfaces.

Step 2: adjoin the parts

Fill the visible scratches/cracks with superglue paste. Use an old rug to wipe off excess glue on the sides of the scratch.

Step 3: sanding the scratches

Use a sand paper to level the glue around the scratched area. Sanding has a double benefit since it also produces a fine leather dust that sticks on the glued area. Thus, the scratches are filled with leather too.  

Step 4: buffing the leather with color polish

Buff the boot with a color polish to complete the repair. The polish doesn’t only nourish the leather but also helps mask the scratches further. This gives your boot an even, shiny appearance.

Method 3: Trimming loose leather

What you’ll need:

  • Renovating repair cream
  • Small scissors
  • Sand paper

Step 1: Trimming loose leather

Use the scissors to cut away any loose leather around the scratched area. You can also scrub the area gently using a sand paper to smooth the area out before applying the repair cream.

Step 2:  Application of renovating cream

Using a blunt object, apply the repair directly on the scratched area. Gently work it into the fabric. Once the application is even, let it sit until it is dry. 

Step 3: Polish the shoe

Complete the repair by treating with a conditioner. Shoe polish smoothes the repaired surface and also nourishes the fabric of your leather boot.  

Below is a quick review of the best leather polishes to use on your shoes




Where to Buy

Sof Sole Mink Oil Leather Conditioner


-10 Percent glycerine

-15% mink oil


Bickmore Leather Conditioner

-Includes plant oils and beeswax

-Industrial leather preservatives

7pc Full Leather Shoe Polish Kit

-2 Shoe Polishes

-Black Shoe brush

-Brown Shoe Brush

-German Polishing Cloth

JobSite Premium Mink Oil Leather Waterproof Liquid

-Water resistant

-Silicone moisturizes leather

-A Blend of silicone , mink oil, and lanolin


Your leather shoe can withstand environmental abuse and serve you for years if you know how you can repair minor issues such as scratches.

There are many DIY strategies you can employ but the three in here are straightforward and use locally available tools. Stop dilly dallying and save scratch shoe, now.


Leave a Comment