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How to Shrink Leather Gloves: With 2 Simple Steps

Finding a good pair of leather gloves is an unmatched feeling. The feeling you get from wearing them is unremarkable. So, when you start a job that requires them or even enter the cold seasons, there is nothing more disappointing than finding out they do not fit you like a glove. As a result, the question “How to Shrink Leather Gloves” becomes popular.

Usually, when talking about leather items, most people think that the durable material cannot be budged from its original form. Although the resilience of leather as a material is one of its main advantages, it is not difficult to shrink them to the size you wish.

Key Takeaways

  • Shrinking leather gloves is possible through two techniques. The hot water method and the rubbing alcohol method.
  • When leather gloves are wet and heat is applied to them, leather gloves shrink.
  • It is important to read the tag on your chosen gloves just in case the manufacturers want you to be aware of something.
  • Always keep a spray bottle on hand; A spray bottle is an essential household item because they can be used for cleaning, ironing, and watering.
  • If you plan to use the hot water method, you should first boil the water and then let it cool down.
  • If your leather gloves become stiff, use a leather conditioner, such as leather honey, to rehydrate them.
  • When using the rubbing alcohol method make sure to have liquid dish soap near you too.

What is Behind the Shrinkage of Leather Gloves?

As previously said, shrinking a highly praised fabric such as leather may be scary to some. After all, it is not a cheap material, and no one wants to be blamed for causing damage to it.

What is behind the shrinkage of leather gloves is not rocket science, but rather just old-fashioned wisdom. Luckily shrinking leather does not require any harsh components that risk its form. You will mostly need water and high heat. With these two fundamental elements, the leather of the gloves will soften and be more flexible to mold to your desired size.

A widely used technique for shrinking leather gloves calls for rubbing alcohol, which is completely safe for both the item and you. Usually, you will only need one of these methods since they have a high success rate.

To not prolong this any further and waste your valued time I will continue to thoroughly explain how to shrink leather gloves using the hot water method and the rubbing alcohol method.

In order to not drag this out any longer and waste your precious time I will continue to go into great detail on how to shrink leather gloves using the hot water approach and the rubbing alcohol method.

Shrinking Leather Gloves Using Hot Water

Before starting to shrink your leather gloves, a crucial step you need to take is reading the labels that they have. Because each glove is different, this is done to ensure that manufacturers do not have special standards in place for their respective products.

Now that we have got that disclaimer out of the way, you first need to start by boiling water. After it starts to steam and boil, the next step is to let it cool down to a medium lukewarm temperature. Straightaway, I know what you may be thinking, was the boiling part pointless? It may seem like that, but I can assure you it is not, boiling the water will get rid of any germs that can damage the fine leather material on your gloves. 

The gloves will then be submerged in the prepared water for at least 10 minutes. If by any chance the water the gloves are in starts going cold, feel free to pour warm water on top of it. This is done because the cold water itself may cause an unwanted effect. After all, the keyword in this method is hot water.

After the time has passed, carefully take the gloves out of the water, and be sure to withdraw any excess water from them. You should strive to be delicate with this part of the process and not twist the leather gloves as you would a dish towel since the material is significantly more sensitive.

The final step is drying leather gloves. To be sure that you will reach its maximum effect, the air drying should be done for at least 12h. Sometimes to quicken this process, people have been known to put their gloves in a drying machine or use a hair dryer. While these steps will accelerate the time that the leather gloves dry, they can also damage them. So, if you do decide to attempt either one, proceed with caution; you have been warned.

Shrinking Leather Gloves Using Rubbing Alcohol

Shrinking your leather gloves using rubbing alcohol is way simpler than it sounds. All you need is lukewarm water, rubbing alcohol, and some dish soap. Elements that most people already have in their homes.

To begin this technique, you need to fill up a bowl with equal part water and rubbing alcohol. Essentially the two components need to be in a 1:1 ratio with one another. Then you just submerge the leather gloves into the solution and let them get soaked up.

The reason behind using rubbing alcohol is to remove the protective oils that the gloves are originally manufactured with. This protective wall which is formed is what makes your gloves last long in the first place. The oils form a barrier that does not let the warm water interact with the fibers of the leather.

Enough with the science lesson. While letting the gloves soak in the water, you need to prepare a different solution. Here you will need warm water, the famous rubbing alcohol, and liquid dish soap. Again, they should be poured into a bottle in equal portions. After removing the gloves from the first mixture, put them on a dry surface and pat the excess water off dry.

Now, to come near the completion of the shrinking process, you need to use the solution with the dishwater soap and sprinkle it on top of the gloves. This will interact directly with the leather threads. Last but not least, use a clean warm towel and compress the gloves with it while being gentle to not twist them in any form. Do this until they are semi-dry and for the rest of the process just let them air dry.

This may seem like a science project, but it is going to certainly give you results to shrink your favorite pair of leather gloves. If you want to go the extra mile after completing all of this, you can lather up the gloves with leather oil to coat and secure them all in place.

Final Words/Outro

We’ve reached the end of this article. I hope that I have aided you in your journey to shrink a pair of leather gloves. Both of the methods that were explained work wonderfully and, in the end, you can even try out both.

If you ask me personally, I prefer the rubbing alcohol one. It may be more tiresome and have more steps, but the mixtures seem to interact with the threads of the leather more directly. Either way, the two techniques will serve you well.

It is worth mentioning that not only for leather gloves but also for leather boots or say leather clothes in general, the hot water method will do its magic.

Further Reading

Given that you seemed to enjoy what you read, why not explore the topic of polyester, if you can dry clean it, or the one that shows you how to clean wicker baskets?

Additionally, there is a blog that includes the types of wool.
Enjoy.

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