How Do You Break in Work Boots Fast for Sore Feet?

It’s an age-old dilemma: you get one of the best work boots for sore feet and they don’t provide that instant comfort you expected. You know your feet will eventually get used to your new boots, but you don’t have several months to make these work boots comfortable. So, how can you speed up the process of breaking in your work boots?

The good news is that there are a few options for hurrying up the process. However, keep in mind that there is no overnight cure for your work boots. You can’t rush this procedure, or else you risk damaging your boots completely.


How Do You Break In Work Boots Fast for Sore Feet?

The most important thing to know beforehand is that you start with the right size work boots. If your boots are too small, to begin with, no amount of breaking in is going to solve the discomfort issues you’re feeling.

1. Wear Your Work Boots Around the House and Yard

The main goal in breaking in your work boots is to get the boot’s footbed and leather to conform to your feet. These materials are very stiff, excellent for protecting your feet at work, but not so much for your comfort. It will take some time to get them to mold to your foot shape.

Wear your boots around the house as much as possible, so your boots can get used to the shape of your foot and also how it moves. Climb your stairs as often as possible since the movement of your foot will help move the leather; it will encourage flexibility in the leather.

Take a walk around your neighborhood to keep your feet moving. This will further help your boots because you’ll be walking on different surfaces, giving your work boots more chance to practice becoming flexible.

If you do this for a few hours each day for a week, you’ll notice a tremendous difference in how your work boots feel. You can start with just a few minutes first, but be sure to add time each day. This will also allow you to get adjusted to the heaviness of the work boots as your feet and boots adapt to each other.

2. Bend Your Work Boots to Increase Flexibility

Hold your work boots in your hands, with the toe in one hand and the heel in the other. Very gently bend the sole of your work boot in half, and then flex it back the opposite way. This will help break in the center of your boot’s insole, increasing its flexibility. Try this for a little bit every time before putting on your work boot.

The heel is also often a very stiff spot on work boots. To try loosening it a little, gently step on it. Do not stomp on it because you don’t want to damage it, and be sure you wear soft shoes if you try this. Again, you are only trying to loosen up the leather slightly. If the toes are also stiff, you could also try gently stepping on them in the same way.

3. Use Moisturizers and Conditioners to Soften Your Work Boots

With the correct oils and conditioners, you can soften the leather of your work boots, making them more supple. This will help the leather move more quickly and take the shape of your foot. Be sure that you are only using approved moisturizers, though, to not destroy the leather.

Mink oil is an excellent product to use on your work boots, but be aware that it can darken leather. So be careful not to use too much!

After you’ve applied the moisturizer, leave your boots for a few hours, or even better, overnight. Don’t put on your work boots until they are completely dry.

Remember that hydrated leather becomes more pliable. This is a fantastic way to speed up the process of breaking in your boots, but it doesn’t work by itself. You still need to stretch out the leather, then.

4. Use Shoe Stretchers on Your Work Boots

Shoe stretchers are pieces of wood shaped like a foot; they have spacers that can widen to put pressure on your boot’s leather from within to help it expand. You must go slowly with this process, only expanding a tiny bit at a time; otherwise, you risk ending up with work boots that are too large for you. You can’t undo it if you go too far.

Shoe stretching is an excellent way to address pinching, but it doesn’t help break in your footbed, which still needs to conform to your foot.

Written by Chris

Hi, I'm Chris! I have worked in environments that have been tough on my feet for almost 15 years now. During that time I have had to research, understand and learn all about work boots as and when I've experienced some pain or discomfort. I still work outdoors, but also enjoy writing for this website and sharing my knowledge with you.

January 3, 2022

Sore Feet

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