Leather boots can take a lot of abuse, but if you want to keep yours looking their best, you'll need to frequently remove the accumulations of dirt, sand, mud, grass and debris. You could purchase a leather cleaning kit at your local shoe store, or you can skip the commercial approach and use a simple home remedy, saving yourself some money.
General Cleaning Instructions
For general cleaning with natural products, the Environmental Protection Agency recommends a half-and-half mixture of white vinegar and water. White vinegar is an amazing all-purpose stain remover, which also removes the salts, dirt and debris that tend to accumulate on leather boots. After mixing your solution, apply it to a damp sponge or cloth and start scrubbing your boots. Rinse the vinegar away with a water-dampened cloth and then place the boots outside to air-dry.
In some cases, you may need a little something extra to get rid of the difficult stains that develop on the surface of leather boots. Baking soda can help you in this regard. Dampen a soft cloth with water and dip it in baking soda. Scrub the stain in a circular motion and then rinse with water. Once again, allow the boot to air dry -- preferably outdoors in sunlight.
Suede, though derived from leather, requires a different approach. Excess moisture can damage the texture, so use as little liquid as possible. A pencil eraser can safely remove many stains from suede, and you can also try scrubbing it with a dry leather brush to remove dust and surface dirt. For stains, you can apply a few tiny drops of undiluted white vinegar and scrub with a dry cloth. Then allow the suede to air-dry.
If you have difficult stains -- like those resulting from blood or chocolate -- appearing on expensive leather boots, try consulting a leather expert. He can best help you to eliminate the stains without damaging the leather. Clean your leather boots regularly to prevent excess dirt and stains from accumulating. If a stain does appear, clean it right away. The longer it sets in, the more difficult your cleaning effort will be.