Leather shoes are a staple in any wardrobe, but what do you do when they get wet or dirty? You can’t just toss them in the washing machine! In this complete guide, we will answer all of your questions about how to put leather shoes in the freezer. We’ll cover everything from how to clean them to how to protect them from damage. By following our tips, you can keep your leather shoes looking and feeling great for years to come!
Why Would You Want to Put Your Leather Shoes in the Freezer?
Leather shoes are an expensive purchase, and you want them to last as long as possible. Unfortunately, leather can suffer from odors and mold. Putting your leather shoes in the freezer may be a good way to help protect them against these factors.
Another beneficial reason to put your leather shoes in the freezer is if you are trying to break them in. The cold temperature helps make the leather more pliable, allowing it to be stretched and molded to fit your feet better. This can help reduce blisters and discomfort when wearing new shoes.
Benefits Of Putting Leather Shoes In The Freezer
But what are the exact benefits of putting leather shoes in the freezer? Is it actually helpful? Well, yes it is! In this section, we will discuss the advantages of freezing your leather shoes.
It helps to prevent the bacterial growth
As we already mentioned, leather shoes are susceptible to bacteria and mold, as they provide the perfect environment for such microscopic organisms due to their porous surface. Bacteria and fungi can cause discoloration and tarnish the leather material, reducing its lifespan significantly.
If your shoes are emitting a foul smell, it too may be due to bacteria that has built up inside the shoe. By putting them in the freezer, you can get rid of this unpleasant aroma and make sure your feet smell nice and fresh again.
The cold temperature helps to kill any odorous bacteria that may be present in the leather material, and will also help prevent new smells from forming.
This is especially beneficial if you have sweaty feet, as a build-up of bacteria can cause very unpleasant odors. And if you don’t have much time on your hands to clean and air out your shoes, a quick trip to the freezer can help keep them smelling nice.
There is mixed information on whether freezing actually kills the bacteria or only prevents their growth, but it is still considered good practice to put your leather shoes in the freezer at least once or twice a month for better results.
It can make removing certain stains easier
Frequent use can cause various stains and marks to form on your leather shoes. These can be difficult to remove without the proper products, so putting them in the freezer may be a good alternative. The cold temperature helps make certain tough stains much easier to remove, as it makes the leather surface more pliable. This allows you to wipe away any dirt or grime that may have built up on your shoes with ease.
One of the most notorious stains to get rid of is gum. Putting your leather shoes in the freezer can make it much easier to remove, as the gum will stiffen up and be simple to peel off without damaging the surface.
It prevents mold growth
Mold can be one of the most damaging factors to your leather shoes. The moisture that is trapped inside the shoe due to sweat and other environmental factors provides an ideal environment for mold spores to thrive and cause damage.
The cold temperature in a freezer will help prevent any mold growth on your shoes, as it will make it harder for fungi or mold spores to survive.   
Downsides Of Putting Leather Shoes In The Freezer
Sadly, not everything is that simple when it comes to freezing your leather shoes. Like any other method, there are some drawbacks that you should consider before doing this.
Leather can rip
One of the main disadvantages of putting your shoes in the freezer is that it can cause the leather material to rip. This is due to extreme temperature changes, which cause the fibers in the leather to expand and contract unevenly.
Another downside is that freezing your leather shoes can cause their shape to change. The cold temperature can make them become stiffer and less pliable, causing them to take on a different form than before.
This means that even if you manage to get a perfect fit for your feet initially, after freezing your shoes they may not fit you the same way.
It can dry out the material
Additionally, the cold temperature in a freezer can be severely drying for the leather material, making the surface rough and brittle over time. This will not only make it harder to clean your shoes but can also reduce their lifespan significantly.
Cracking and peeling of the leather is another issue that may arise due to freezing, as the cold temperature causes the material to become dry and brittle. This can ruin your shoes completely, so it’s best to avoid this method unless absolutely necessary.
In order to prevent this from happening, you should limit how often you put your shoes in the freezer and always use a conditioning product afterward to help keep them soft and supple.
It may leave water marks on the surface
Another potential issue with freezing your leather shoes is the possibility of water marks forming on the surface. This is due to condensation that may form on their exterior as they warm up, which can leave unsightly stains on your shoes.
In order to avoid this from happening, you should wrap them in a towel or plastic bag before freezing them. This will help absorb any moisture that accumulates during the process and prevent it from leaving stains on the shoe’s surface. And we will talk more on this prevention measure and more next! 
Factors To Consider When Putting Your Leather Shoes In the Freezer
As you can see, putting your shoes in the freezer has plenty of benefits, but it also has some considerations. So, to ensure your leather shoes remain in good condition, we will discuss some factors to consider before placing your beloved leather shoes in the freezer.
Type of leather
One of the most important factors to consider when you decide to put your leather shoes in the freezer is the type of leather used. Leather can be divided into two categories: full grain and corrected grain.
Full-grain leather will maintain its color and texture better than corrected grain if placed in the freezer because of its natural oil content that helps keep it soft and supple. However, if you choose to freeze corrected grain leather, it may start to harden or become brittle over time due to a lack of natural oils.
Suede is particularly vulnerable to changes in temperature, so you should be extremely careful when placing suede shoes in the freezer. If you do choose to place your suede shoes in the freezer, it’s best to put them in a waterproof bag first and make sure they are completely dry before doing so.
The second factor to consider is that your leather shoes must be properly prepared before they can go into the freezer. You can’t just throw them in there and expect them to stay in good condition.
First, you need to make sure they are completely clean and free of dirt and debris. The best way to do this is by using a soft cloth or brush and gently wiping the leather down with a mild soap solution.
Once the shoes are clean and dry, you should remove the insoles and laces. This is done to avoid further bacteria growth while the shoes are in the freezer. Additionally, you should stuff the shoes with newspapers to help them maintain their shape and avoid damage from freezing temperatures.
Now, it’s time to wrap your shoes in a few layers of towels or a freezer bag. This is done to avoid any water droplets from forming and damaging the leather. Make sure you wrap the shoes tightly and securely so no air can get in. If your freezer is big enough, you can shove them in a shoebox as well. This will help to keep them protected and organized.
It’s important to note that you should never put your shoes in the freezer with wet or damp leather, as this could cause irreparable damage. Once your leather shoes are properly prepared, they’re ready to go into the freezer!
Length of time
Another factor that you should consider is how long you plan on keeping your leather shoes in the freezer.
Another question to consider is what temperature should you set your freezer at before putting the leather shoes in.
Well, it depends on what kind of freezer you have but generally speaking, you should set it somewhere around 0°F (-18°C). This temperature will help prevent the freezing of any moisture that may still be in your leather shoes and will also keep them from becoming stiff or brittle.
It’s important to remember that even though leather is a durable material, it can become damaged if exposed to extreme temperatures for too long. So, make sure you are monitoring the temperature of your freezer, and when in doubt, err on the side of caution!
Make sure your shoes don’t touch the walls of the freezer
The last factor to consider is that you should make sure your leather shoes do not come into contact with the walls of the freezer.
This can cause frostbite and other forms of damage, especially if the temperature in the freezer gets too low. So, always make sure to place your leather shoes on a flat surface or shelf inside the freezer, away from any direct contact with cold surfaces.
Also, we suggest emptying the freezer of any other items before placing your leather shoes in there. This will further minimize the chances of any frostbite or condensation damage to your leather shoes. And you won’t get any smells from the food and other items that may be inside! 
How long to leave leather shoes in the freezer to stretch?
The answer to this question depends on the type of leather used for your shoes. Some leathers will stretch relatively quickly, while others require a longer period of time in the freezer.
Generally, leaving your leather shoes in the freezer for around 4-8 hours should be sufficient to stretch them. If you won’t reach the desired effect within that amount of time, try repeating the process the next day.
Why do people keep shoes in the freezer?
The act of putting leather shoes in the freezer may sound strange, but there are many benefits to doing so. It can help to prevent bacteria and fungi from growing on the surface of the shoe, as well as help to maintain its shape. The cold also helps to keep the leather soft and supple, making it more comfortable to wear for extended periods of time. Additionally, freezing leather shoes can help to break in them quicker, making them more comfortable as soon as you put them on.
Does freezing leather shoes damage it?
Many people wonder if it is safe to put leather shoes in the freezer as a way of cleaning them or keeping them fresh. The truth is, yes it can if done incorrectly. The extreme temperatures of the freezer can cause some of its components such as glue or stitching to become brittle or crack. Additionally, if the shoe is exposed to extreme temperatures for too long it could cause irreparable damage such as cracking and splitting of the material.
The most important thing to keep in mind when putting your leather shoes in the freezer is to wrap them with a towel first. This will help keep the moisture out, preventing any of its components from becoming too brittle or dry and cracking. Additionally, it is important to freeze your shoes for no longer than 4-8 hours at a time to ensure that your shoes are not exposed to extreme temperatures for too long.
Does putting leather shoes in the freezer stretch them?
The short answer is yes, putting leather shoes in the freezer can help stretch them. However, this method should only be used as a last resort and with caution due to the potential for damage or misshaping of your shoes.
When leather gets too dry or tight it can cause the material to harden, making it difficult to break in. Placing your leather shoes in a freezer can soften the leather, making it more pliable and easier to stretch. The trick is to place a damp rag or cloth inside the shoe before freezing it to help prevent any damage that could be caused by prolonged exposure to very cold temperatures.
Just keep in mind that not all leather shoes will respond the same way to being placed in a freezer. Depending on the type of leather and how it was tanned, freezing could potentially cause irreparable damage.
Does freezing damage shoes?
The short answer is: it depends. Freezing temperatures can damage some types of shoes, including leather ones, but not all. Generally speaking, the colder and drier the environment in which your shoes are stored, the less likely they will suffer any damage from freezing temperatures.
For leather shoes specifically, while they may become a bit stiff after being exposed to cold temperatures for an extended period of time, this stiffness should fade away once they’ve been brought back up to room temperature. However, if your leather shoes have been exposed to extremely cold temperatures or dampness for too long then there is a chance that their integrity could be compromised and cause permanent damage.
Can you put leather in the freezer?
The short answer is yes, you can put leather shoes in the freezer. Doing so will help to kill any bacteria and germs that may be present on the surface of the leather. It will also help to reduce odors, as well as protect against mold or mildew development. However, it is important to understand that freezing temperatures can cause damage to leather shoes over time.
Before putting your leather shoes in the freezer, it is best to clean them thoroughly with a gentle cleanser designed specifically for leather products. This will help ensure that any impurities such as dust or dirt are removed so that they do not become frozen within the shoe’s material structure. Once cleaned, wrap them loosely in a towel and place them in the freezer for no longer than 8 hours.
Useful Video: THIS is why you should put your Shoes in the Freezer
Sometimes, you might have exhausted all other options to get rid of the odor of your leather shoes, and freezing them is the only practical solution. It’s a quick way to kill bacteria and fungi that can cause permanent damage to your footwear.
But many people wonder whether putting leather shoes in the freezer is a safe method. Generally speaking, it’s recommended that you put your leather shoes in the freezer for no more than four hours at a time. This will kill most of the bacteria and fungi without causing any damage to your footwear.
If you leave your shoes unattended, it can make them dry and brittle. Therefore, it’s important that you take proper care of your leather shoes before, during, and after freezing them. Make sure to clean them properly, air dry them and then wrap them in a towel before putting them in the freezer.
The key to making sure freezing your leather shoes is successful is to check them every hour or so to make sure they don’t freeze solid. Once some time has passed, take them out of the freezer, allow them to thaw, and then let them dry completely.
And you should keep an eye on temps too. If temperatures are too low, it can cause irreparable damage to your shoes.
To sum up, putting leather shoes in the freezer can work as an effective method to get rid of odor-causing bacteria and fungi. However, it’s important to make sure you do it properly and follow all the steps mentioned in this guide for the best results. We personally suggest you resort to this method only as a last resort and make sure to take proper care of your leather shoes.
For more tips on how to take care of your footwear, don’t forget to check out our blog. We publish new articles every week! Stay tuned for more useful information.