Use Meltonian Leather lotion or Venetian Shoe Cream for Chromexcel & Shell Cordovan if you don't want the color to change. The later is recommended by Horween, but the Meltonian is more easily available & works great. These products actually return the leather to it's original color. Chromexcel is already oil stuffed & very weather resistant by design. It's not like you can't wear them in the winter if you don't want to sno-seal or obenauf's them. You're not going to the arctic circle or anything so just relax & enjoy your boots. Realize that Crane acknowledges what he does to his boots is extreme... PS - the desert tears these boots up - Yucca is extremely sharp & unforgiving. Sadly a synthetic is probably best for desert bushwacking.