Is shell cordovan a better option than calf for rainy days?

  1. Question (first posted by @Galix): Next winter I'll be moving to a place where it literally rains on average 235 days a year, plus occasional snow. Is it cordovan a better option than calf for that insane amount of water? And what about soles: dainite or commando?

    Answer 1 (posted by @Reevolving): No, some shell stains immediately. I never let my shell shoes see rain. Rain can destroy leather soles in a day. Get a pair of beater shoes with rubber soles.

    Answer 2 (posted by @NHorween): I wear my shell shoes all winter and absolutely in the rain. When shell gets wet sometimes welts will appear, but this can usually be resolved by brushing or rewetting the shoes evenly and then allowing to dry (naturally - no moving air or heat). If the sidewalks are salty I always wipe the salt away at the end of the day.
    These should be able to to ship to Norway - http://www.menshoes.de/en/oberleder/..._from_store=de
    Carmina is always a great option with Dainite Soles - http://www.carminashoemaker.com

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  1. nicelynice
    The density of shell cordovan seems inherently more waterproof than other leathers. I wear a pair of cordovan boots with commando soles almost exclusively when it rains.
  2. daizawaguy
    I get water marks on mine - avoid the rain!
  3. tigerpac
    100% yes better option. Wearing shell today because of the rainy NYC weather as a matter of fact.
  4. tigerpac
    100% yes better option. Wearing shell today because of the rainy NYC weather as a matter of fact.
  5. coolarrow
    I try not to wear shell shoes when there is a chance of rain. You can restore the natural shine of shell, but it is a PITA to brush out the welts.
  6. Coxsackie
    Shell can certainly sustain marks from rain, but generally these "stains" disappear on natural drying. I concur that wet cordovan shoes should never be force-dried.

    I completely saturated my Carmina shell jumper boots by riding a motorbike through a thunderstorm. It took three or four days for them to dry out and some very slight permanent watermarks are now apparent in a couple of places, but only visible close up. I regard this as an attractive element in the boots' patina. Shell, after all, is inherently slightly less formal than (say) box calf, and my jumper boots are more for wearing with jeans than with a worsted suit.

    As to the soles, both Dainite, Commando and Victory would work. Dainite comes in a single or double layer. Some shoes (e.g. Crockett & Jones) come with a storm welt, which adds even more to the water resistance. Ask for this feature.

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