Sorry, I made a mistake!
Edited by Munky - 12/30/15 at 4:08am
Thanks for the reply. If you don't mind, I have included some pictures of my loafers after one wear (my first pair actually).
Would you recommend getting toe plates installed on them based on the damage done?
(Edited for clarity - I was confusing Bick and HDLP on absorption).
FYI on conditioners: I took an old pair of tan colored Red Wing work boots that have been neglected for ~20 years. Used Bicks, Lexol, and HDLP on different parts of the boots. So far the Lexol and HDLP have darkened them. Will see if that fades over time. I have 3 coats of Bicks on one with no significant darkening. Most interesting to me is that Lexol got absorbed almost immediately. The HDLP and Bicks took a while to get absorbed (or could have been evaporation). I started at one end of the boot and applied Lexol. By the time I got back to the end where I had started to wipe it down the stuff was gone and already absorbed by the leather. It was like a sponge taking up water.
The leather with Bicks on it feels the same, but less dry. The area with Lexol feels just a little bit greasy - just barely. The area with HDLP feels waxy. Not surprising given that HDLP is a solid at room temp and the other two are liquid.
Will try a couple of others as well. They all seem to do a good job of getting into the leather. For work boots where darkening isn't an issue I'd probably use HDLP or Lexol. For my nicer shoes I'll stick to Bicks or something else that is non-darkening (much less darkening is more accurate).
Update: two days later the Lexol no longer has a greasy feel and the HDLP is just barely waxy. If I didn't know what I was looking for, I'd say they all feel about the same. Note that I put on a heavy coats of HDLP and Lexol. No change in the colors: HDLP is the darkest, Lexol is a little less dark, and the three coats of Bicks is still much lighter that the other two. Will see if darkening fades over time.
Almost 3 weeks later there's still a significant difference in darkness. The HDLP and Lexol look about the same. The Bicks is much lighter. Going to have to hit the 2nd boot with Lexol to get them evenly shaded. I applied the HDLP and Lexol more heavily than the Bicks, which could be a factor. However the Bicks has had several applications where the others have not. The light patch on the front left of the left boot is untreated (near the small toe area).
The recommendation for Bick4 made sense to me, especially given the sources. Just wanted to see any visible difference for myself.
Aren't there some sizing systems that are meant to be better standardized, such as Mondopoint? I have noticed that different USA manufacturers will convert their sizes into different European sizes and wondered if this reflected randomness or that the European sizing system is more consistent than the one in the USA. Then, I just don't know how much one can rely on sizes given in centimeters or the Japanese system. UK sizing, that I have experiences, seems no more consistent than USA sizing.
I guess another possible explanation for some of the variability is that the footwear manufacturers are trying to size based on an implied heel-to-ball length, even though they are giving "overall" sizes. Then, of course, pointy-toe shoes would be longer than ones with rounder toes, and people who obsess too much over how much room in front of their toes they have and not whether the balls of their feet line up correctly experience more variability.
My slightly narrow, low volume feet, with short toes frequently lead me into danger with getting footwear that is too small. All the available D-width footwear encourages me to buy a smaller size to get the volume right. Then, my short toes allow me to fit into footwear with generous room in the toe box. And, in the end, the footwear doesn't fit well. Bah. I have come to realize that I must only buy footwear that has plenty of apparently extra space in the toe and that something is probably wrong if D-width footwear fits me well in thin socks. Of course, I am also pursuing some C-width footwear...
Sorry for the long rant...