DIY: Bath Tub Boots

La Mundial has a reputation for poor customer service. In my experience they are all true and I would avoid the brand like the plague. The reduced cost is not worth the headache. I ordered two pairs of boots from them… They made me fight (for months) to get me my second pair… They messed those up and I literally had to call the AG of Florida to show them I wasn’t messing around. I even resorted to posting on COTHF about the hassle to try to get them to acknowledge my calls/ emails.Anyways, the boots did not fit me properly and my legs would go numb in both pairs anytime I rode with them zipped up all the way. I purchased DerDau boot stretch spray and used it without luck. After much debate I finally decided to try the bathtub method. I figured it couldn’t possibly get worse since the boots were already fairly unusable.

  • Boots
  • Bathtub filled with HOT water
  • Boot socks
  • Plastic bags

To start I would make sure that you have a towel laid out, your boots, and your plastic bags. I personally chose to dip just the calf of my boots given that the foot of the boots fit me alright. This essentially just involved me holding the boots in the bathtub and swishing them around. The water was so hot that I couldn’t keep my hands in it – this is key to this process working. Next I pulled the boots out (let them drip a bit so they aren’t totally soaked when you put them on), wrapped my feet in plastic bags, and on went the boots.

matching socks are important

Once the boots are on you have to wear them until they dry. This is the trickiest part because soggy feet/ legs is  not very comfortable. Luckily given that I work from home this isn’t as much of an issue for me. With the tighter boot I actually resoaked the boot a few hours in and started over.

Admittedly I do not wear these boots that much since I purchased new boots from a euro shop but they do fit a lot better after the bathtub method. I would recommend that anyone in this position try the bathtub method to get your boots to fit. The water didn’t seem to have any ill effects on the leather.

Have any of you tried this method?

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11 Comments

  1. I have never tried this method, but I know of people who use this trick on new saddles. They dunk the saddle, then tack up and ride til it’s dry. I don’t think I could do that to a brand new saddle, but would def try on boots. Those square toes are a nice touch btw 🙂 hope they fit after sloshing about all day!

  2. I was nervous to do this method at first, but my calves are dramatically different sizes after getting kicked in the knee while riding freshman year of college, so if I’m going to have well-fitting off the rack boots, one of them is either going to be too big or too small. I choose too small last time and did the bathtub method. Worked great! My feet used to go numb within minutes of putting them on, not anymore. And I made sure to condition well afterward and have had no issues.

  3. Thank you so much for sharing this! I’m having serious tall boot issues of my own at the moment. One question: did the soaking make your tall boots less waterproof afterward?

    1. I don’t think my boots have never been waterproof… I usually switch my boots for dubarrys or other shoes directly before and after rides so I never really expose them to the elements.

  4. I have some pairs of leather shoes that I’ve filled with ziploc baggies of water and stuck in the freezer, but I haven’t tried heat. The freezer was only semi-successful and, obvs, wouldn’t work so well for boot embiggening. :/

  5. Glad to see a real life person actually tried this since it’s recommended online so much. I don’t have boots that need this, but I’ll file it away for later use.

  6. I’ve pseudo tried this, when I got my Bevals, I hosed my legs down at the barn because they were numbingly stiff and tight and miserable and then wore them until dry. It did seem to help a bit. I’ve also done the alcohol rubbing on the inside to soften bit didn’t really find it a big change.

  7. My first pair of La Mundials were like that, so tight that I could not get them all the way on. I rode with them only halfway zipped because they were the only boots I had. I tried water, I tried olive oil, I tried just making myself wear them, nothing worked, unless I put them on first thing in the morning. I will definitely try this with them, though. My second pair were great and fit me perfectly, but I specifically told him to measure the calf larger because my legs swell after sitting at a desk all day. Sorry you had trouble, but glad to hear you figured something out to make them at least passable for you.

  8. This post makes me happy and sad. Happy because I’m glad this method of boot stretching worked for you. And sad because I was considering giving that brand a try.