mink oil....bad for good leather?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Ward, Apr 29, 2010.

  1. Ward

    Ward Active Member

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    So I used to use a quick wipe down of mink oil on my EGs or C&Js every morning and the other day the shoe shine guy who comes by my work scolded me. He said that the oil is not good for nicer leathers.....and said it makes it harder to polish the shoes. Is he just trying to get me to need a shine quicker? I've never heard this before. He did mention that on lower quality leathers it does not matter that much either way...
     
  2. MyOtherLife

    MyOtherLife Senior member

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    This has been covered many times. Make use of the 'search' feature in future. You'll find it a powerful time saver.
    That said, the shoe shine guy told you the truth.
    Mink oil for one, is not even made from Mink. It is processed pork fat or made synthetically.
    It permeates the leather and is used primarily on leather workwear (leather construction boots, etc) to keep salt from ruining the leather in winter. It also acts as a water repellant, again, btter suited for leather workwear.
    It can also be used for an old pair of beater shoes you'll use for rainy days, possibly.
    I would not advise using Mink Oil or Dubbin on any dress shoe.
    Using it on dress shoes is a very bad idea, especially on shoes of the quality of your EG's & C&J's.
    With your leather saturated with this oil, they'll never take polish properly, no matter how sparingly you've applied it.
    See a reputable cobbler in your area. He may be able to remove the mink oil chemically.
    But I stress, do some homework first. Perhaps tell us the city you live in and someone here can recommend one.
     
  3. Cary Grant

    Cary Grant Senior member

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    And you do not need to oil, condition or polish every day.
     
  4. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I put mink oil on a $800 pair of shoes, couldn't remove the oily buildup with anything. I brought them to every person under the sun including Ron Rider who couldn't do anything substantial to make them take a shine again. I think im going to throw them in the garbage.

    All in all mink oil is wonderful for leather, but terrible for finish.

    He said that it doesn't matter on lower quality leather because it is corrected. The pores are sanded down and it can't absorb anything. The mink oil just sits on top.
     
  5. sho'nuff

    sho'nuff grrrrrrrr!!

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    So I used to use a quick wipe down of mink oil on my EGs or C&Js every morning and the other day the shoe shine guy who comes by my work scolded me. He said that the oil is not good for nicer leathers.....and said it makes it harder to polish the shoes. Is he just trying to get me to need a shine quicker? I've never heard this before. He did mention that on lower quality leathers it does not matter that much either way...

    mink oil is for horse saddles and cowboy gear.
     
  6. Wes Bourne

    Wes Bourne Senior member

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    I've heard and often read that mink oil or any other animal fat based product will cause leather to break down over time. I just condition with Lexol and use Snow Seal (made with beeswax) on leather that appears particularly dry. Sno Seal is also a great waterproofer and won't interfere with waxing.
     
  7. Ward

    Ward Active Member

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    Great to know. Thanks for the replies.
     
  8. Wes Bourne

    Wes Bourne Senior member

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    ^ Manufacturer info here, typical review/testimonial here. The small 7oz. jar will last forever.
     
  9. greekgeek

    greekgeek Senior member

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    .
    Mink oil for one, is not even made from Mink. It is processed pork fat or made synthetically.


    Say wuh? You can buy mink oil.
     
  10. Harold falcon

    Harold falcon Senior member

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    mink oil is for horse saddles and cowboy gear.

    +1. It is best used to help soften and add water resistance to tough leathers. I use it yearly on my motorcycle saddlebags. I would not use it on shoes or delicate leather items.
     
  11. erdawe

    erdawe Senior member

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    I've heard and often read that mink oil or any other animal fat based product will cause leather to break down over time. I just condition with Lexol and use Snow Seal (made with beeswax) on leather that appears particularly dry. Sno Seal is also a great waterproofer and won't interfere with waxing.

    This...
    Quite straight-forward and has yet to fail me on variety of leather products including shoes/boots.
     
  12. a tailor

    a tailor Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    if you have soft leather athletic shoes or walking shoes.
    mink oil will keep them soft and pliable and water proofed.
    i use it on my walking shoes.
     
  13. trader

    trader Senior member

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    ive heard saphir renovateur has mink oil in it. true? i don't think so though cause I use it all the time.
     
  14. Lustre

    Lustre Well-Known Member

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    hm that's pretty strange, because saddleback leather seems to recommend mink oil for their bags.
     
  15. Walter4

    Walter4 Well-Known Member

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    Saphir Renovateur followed by a light Saphir Medaille d'Or wax and your shoes will always look amazing and be reasonably resistant to the mild water exposure. No need to complicate things unless you treating hiking/work boots.
     

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