How glazing helps your leather shoes

glazing leather shoes

The glazing of leather shoes is a special polishing technique. Find out how

To master glazing leather shows, you require practice, patience, perseverance.

Like everyone else, you will only be able to master the necessary touch after having practiced several times!

Find out below the best glazing technique:

Glazing requirements

Here is everything you will need to help you with glazing your pair of leather shoes:

  • raw wood shoe trees
  • cloth
  • special icing paste
  • lukewarm water
  • special icing brush (optional)

The cloth is very important for the icing: try with several old t-shirts, boxers (anything cotton) you will see that you will have different results and especially with more or less difficulty

Maintenance frequency

It is advisable to renew the glaze of your shoes during each maintenance as described in the Easy Leather Shoes Care Guide.

How to glaze leather shoes

1. Preparation

First of all, in the case of a pair of shoes that has never been frozen, count 30 minutes before obtaining a result (the following icings will be simpler).

Glazing might take up to half an hour to prepare.  

  • To make a glaze, it is advisable to use a simple fine and smooth cotton cloth (a piece of t-shirt or sheet) rather than a cotton chamois. 
  • Your pair of shoes must be perfectly waxed before being glazed. If not, take a look at our Easy Leather Shoes Care Guide.

2. Glazing

After threading the shoe trees into your shoes wrap the cloth around your index and middle fingers making sure there are no creases.

Be comfortable with the position because you will not be changing it during the whole frosting. 

Glazing your shoes involves performing a two-step cycle (one with wax and one with water) as many times as necessary to achieve the desired result.

The water will cause the crystallization of the wax particles

Warning: taking into account the process (crystallization of particles) you will easily understand that the glazing can only be applied to parts which are not subjected to stress when walking: the hard end and / or the buttress.

Glazing – Step 1

  • Pat the cloth lightly in the shoe polish (VERY lightly even) in order to take a tiny amount of material. 
  • Apply the paste to the area to be glazed in a single gesture.
  • Then you have to stroke the leather with small circles without ever staying in one place.
  • At first relatively slow, the gesture should accelerate during the following cycles.
  • You will then feel that with a greasy touch (due to the application of the paste) the leather becomes drier and drier.
  • When this touch is stable and homogeneous go to start the 2nd step

Glazing – Step 2

  • Immerse the ring finger of the hand holding the cloth in the water and apply a SINGLE drop to the area to be glazed.
  • In a single movement, spread this water.
  • Stroke the leather in small circles but never staying in one place.
  • With the application of water you will again feel a greasy touch which will eventually dry.
  • When this touch is stable, repeat a cycle with step 1.

Here we can see the smooth and shiny appearance (= mirror) of the hard end. You can make a glaze in the color of the leather or play with the colors as on the left shoe (mixture of dark brown and black)

Glazing is also a good way to enhance a patina on your leather shoes.

3. Maintaining the glazing

With time and continued use of the leather shoes, the glazing will be scratched, damaged, etc.

To maintain it, you just have to perform step 2 above until the glazing is renewed.

If it is simply dust and / or traces of water, use either:  

  • a new cotton chamois
  • a special icing brush 
  • an old pair of nylon stockings

Note: Do not use a polish brush as it will scratch your icing. 

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