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Mink oil.


Distinguished Member
Mar 3, 2004
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I just picked up a pair of BROWN
Alden captoes from Brooks Brothers. Since I had remaining gift credit from my Ebay purchase, I wanted to take advantage of the sale that ends today. Between the Peales and the Aldens, I actually like Alden's coloring better, and also liked the instep support they provided (the Peales provided little support, and would have exacerbated my overpronation). I should first note that, once again, I had HORRIBLE service. I was coming from home and had track pants and a t-shirt on. But I'm in good shape, and a reasonably good looking, clean cut guy. I didn't look disgusting or anything. There were maybe two people in the store, both looking at inexpensive stuff. I seriously stood by the shoes for 15 minutes, and even had two pair in my hands, waiting for help. Unbelievable. Almost drove me out of the store. Anyways, when I was picking up some new polish for them, I saw some Kiwi mink oil. It said it may darken lighter leathers. I'm wondering whether I should use it on the brown shoes. I wouldn't mind darkening the leather a bit (so to get it an even darker shade of brown), but I obviously don't want to spot them. And, honestly I don't know what mink oil ACTUALLY does for shoes. I also picked up some neutral polish for another pair of shoes I have. This got me wondering -- should you use neutral polish on the soles of the shoes? Is this just idiotic to even consider?


Distinguished Member
Feb 23, 2004
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Get brown polish for your brown shoes. Mink oil, in my experience, is solely used for rugged outdoor shoes, not dress shoes. I use mink oil, or similar goop, on my hiking boots, boat shoes, mocassins, etc. It darkens the leather because of the penetrating moisture of the substance, not because of a dye. If you want to darken them a bit, either use dark brown or dark blue polish. Blue actually does some pretty cool things to light or medium brown shoes -- if done carefully, you'll get a good antiqued effect. Once you've got the color you like, go for the neutral color.


(stands for Jerk)
Spamminator Moderator
Feb 17, 2002
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I also picked up some neutral polish for another pair of shoes I have.  This got me wondering -- should you use neutral polish on the soles of the shoes?  Is this just idiotic to even consider?
On the soles? You mean, on the bottom, where you will then walk across carpets and slick surfaces? Or just the stacked heel and edges, or something? On the bottom does seem insane to me. On the edges, I don't know.


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Aug 16, 2003
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Mink oil will definitely darken leather.

It does provide moisture protection, but you need to take special care to make sure you rub it in completely and remove all the excess residue. Mink oil residue left on the shoe will attract dirt (particularly in the crevices and cracks and lacing).

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