How To Make Boots Fit Tight Around Calves In 2023? [Ultimate Hacks]

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Have you ever bought a pair of boots that were just too big around the calves?

And you don’t know how to make boots fit tight around calves?

They’re often stiff and hard to walk in, even with thick socks on. Plus, they make your calves look bigger than they are! You can’t return them because you’ve already worn them outside.

Now, what do you do?

Luckily, there’s an easy fix! All you need is a couple of household items and about 15 minutes.

No sewing or special skills are required! Here’s how to get boots to fit tight around your calves.

For this purpose, you will need:

  • Boots that are too big around the calf (obviously!)
  • 2 rubber gloves (laundry type)
  • 1 roll of stretchy, clear plastic wrap
How To Make Boots Fit Tight Around Calves Steps
Follow these quick steps to make boots fit tight around your calves.
Step 1
Remove the laces from your boots.
Step 2
Fill one rubber glove with water and tie off the top. Place it inside the boot to add some extra volume and shape. Now slide on the other glove filled with water (you may want to cut off the fingers for a snugger fit). Tie off the top and slide it down as far as you can. If you have trouble, use a rubber band to secure it at the bottom.
Step 3
Once both gloves are in place, wrap your boots with stretchy plastic wrap starting just below the knee. Continue wrapping until there is no more room above or below. Press down very gently with your fingers.
Step 4
Secure the end of the plastic wrap with a strong rubber band or two. You can leave it like this for about 2 hours, but if you want it to really set, try leaving it overnight.
Step 5
Now lace your boots back up! The extra volume from the gloves should give your boots a nice shape, and the plastic wrap should keep them from stretching back out. Enjoy your new snug-fit boots!

How Can I Stretch Boots That Are Too Tight?

how to make boots fit tight around calves

There are some things that can be done to stretch out boots that are too tight. The easiest way is to use our plastic bag trick above! You can also apply moisturizing conditioners or leather creams to soften up the leather for an easier break-in.

Another solution is to wear them on a regular basis and let your legs stretch them out naturally – although this can take time depending on how tight they are!

Shoe Stretcher Method
Stretchy Socks Method
Plastic Bag Trick
Alternative Method
  1. Buy a shoe stretcher in a size just a little smaller than your boots, and then heat the inside of the stretcher with a hairdryer to make it slightly softer.
  2. Put on your tight boots and carefully insert one foot into the boot you want to stretch.
  3. Squeeze the stretcher into the boot with all your might.
  4. Leave the stretchers in the boots overnight, and then remove them after 8 hours or so. Your boots will be much looser than before!
  1. Put on your tight pair of cowboy boots and put on two pairs of stretchy socks.
  2. Pull the stretchy socks over the top of your boots, and then pull them down to cover about half of your boot shafts.
  3. Leave the socks in all night while you sleep, and remove them in the morning. Your boots will be much looser!
  1. Put on your tight pair of cowboy boots and then place a plastic shopping bag over each foot.
  2. Fold the bottom of the bag up into itself so there is no more room for expansion, then fold down the top to close it off completely.
  3. Leave them in all night while you sleep, and remove them in the morning.
  4. Repeat this process for two weeks and your boots will fit better than ever!

If you don’t have any plastic bags around the house, use two pairs of thick socks instead!

Simply place them over your feet before stepping into your boots. Another trick is to fill plastic soda bottles or water bottles with rice and then put them into your boots overnight.

The rice will expand as they fill up the space in your boots, and they will be much looser in the morning.

How To Make Boots Fit Small Calves?

how to make boots fit tight around calves

For those of you whose calves are a little bigger, you can follow the exact same steps above, but instead of water-filled rubber gloves, use a couple of old pairs of socks.

If your calves are thicker than average and it’s difficult to get your boots on over them, try this method.

First, put on two pairs of thick socks before putting your boots on.

Then, slide your feet into the boots and carefully remove the socks inside the boots without tearing or stretching them. The additional thickness from the socks should provide enough room for you to pull on your boots easily.

How Should Tall Boots Fit Around Narrow Calves?

If you’re about average height, you can expect to find that boots fit around narrow calves well enough for walking around without any trouble.

If your legs are abnormally long or shorter than average, though, you might need some help finding boots that fit right.

One solution is to use the plastic bag trick above to stretch out the leather a bit.

If the boots are too long, you could also try folding up the cuff of the boots.

How To Alter Boots For Wide Calves?

how to make boots fit tight around calves

If you wear leather boots but your calves are wide, you might be tempted to take the calf measurement instead of the boot measurement when ordering boots for your wide feet or calves.

While this can work in some cases, if your calves are really much wider than the boots, it will only leave you gaping around the top of your legs. Instead, try these methods.

If you’re just looking for a little extra room, stuff the boots with socks or foam inserts.

This will make them fit well enough to walk in without causing damage.

After you’ve tried these methods, make sure to wear your boots around the house for a few hours before going outside.

This will help stretch them if they feel too tight and give them enough time to dry off if they were wet when you applied the plastic wrap/socks.

Don’t forget that this fix is only temporary and your boots will stretch out again over time.

Try it before a special event or party where you want to wear your favorite boots!

Always be careful when applying heat – the plastic wrap/socks could get damaged by the hot water and cause burns if not handled with care.

How To Make Leather Boots Tighter Around Calves?

To make tight boots fit around your calves, first remove the laces.

Then, use a hairdryer to heat up the boots where they are too tight. Next, quickly put on socks and stuff them with paper or foam before the leather cools.

If this is not enough, you can also try wrapping plastic bags around your calves and placing the boots over them.

If you have a larger calf circumference but smaller feet, you can also stuff the boots with socks or foam inserts.

Be sure to always use moisturizing conditioners on your boots after wearing them to prevent damage and help with break-in!

How Can I Stretch The Calf Of My Leather Boots?

how to make boots fit tight around calves

If you own a pair of leather boots that are too tight in the calves,

Don’t worry, Leather boots will stretch out with wear to conform to your leg, but it helps if you do some stretching first. The best way is to apply heat and moisture.

Take two plastic bags (shopping or bread) and fill them each with water.

Then, place one inside each boot and put the boots in front of a warm fan or in direct sunlight for about 30 minutes.

The warmth will help stretch out the leather while the moisture helps it to retain its new shape.

Don’t worry if your boots feel tight when you take them off – they’ll stretch out over time with wear.

In a pinch, you can try the water-filled gloves method from above. It helps to tie off the top of each glove before putting them in your boots to prevent them from sliding out.

If you want a long-term fix, have your boots stretched by a professional cobbler.

They’ll remove the stitching at the top of your boots and gently stretch out the leather for you.

You can also try using foam inserts to help stretch them – just stuff them in the fronts of your boots until they’re tight enough.

When To Stretch Boots And When To Send Them Out For Repair?

Stretching your boots yourself is a temporary fix.

If you’re planning on wearing your boots for an extended period of time, it’s best to have them stretched or repaired by a professional cobbler or boot repair shop.

If you stretch your boots out yourself and it works for this season, consider having them stretched again the next time around – every time you stretch them decreases their life span.

About How Long Do Boots Usually Last?

As a rule of thumb, most cowboy boots will only last for about one to three years if they’re worn daily.

That’s not very long compared to other shoes and boots!

If you take good care of your boots and wear them less frequently, you’ll be able to extend their lives considerably.

Boots that are only worn periodically should be cleaned and treated with a leather conditioner immediately after each wear to protect them from moisture damage.

If you store your cowboy boots in the wrong conditions, they could become dry or brittle and crack or peel over time.

How Do I Care For My Cowboy Boots?

When buying western boots, make sure you get ones with a little more room for your feet.

Try boots from a place like Corral Boots or Lucchese.

If the boots are too small, they will not be comfortable and you will have difficulty walking in them!

You can also try the plastic bag method above to stretch out a bit more if necessary.

If you have a smaller calf circumference but larger feet, you can stuff the boots with socks or foam inserts.

What Are Some Common Boot Problems?

how to make boots fit tight around calves

The most common problem people encounter with their cowboy boots is that they’re too tight on the calves.

This makes it difficult to walk in them! Some other issues include breaking in the leather, wrinkling at the ankles, and general discomfort.

How Do I Fix These Problems?

If you’re having trouble walking in your boots, use our plastic bag trick above to help stretch them out a bit around the calves.

You can also apply moisturizing conditioners or leather creams to soften up the leather for an easier break-in.

If you’re having trouble with wrinkles in your boots, apply some baby powder or corn starch to your ankles before putting them on. This will help reduce the problem when you walk!

What Else Should I Know?

Stretching out cowboy boots is a quick and easy way to fix them, but if you do this often or for extended periods of time, it could lead to damaged or dry leather.

If you do decide that stretching your boots is the way to go, take good care of them!

Clean and moisturize every time after wearing. This will help ensure that they last as long as possible!

How Can I Clean My Cowboy Boots?

To clean your Western Boots, always use formulated or saddle soap especially for leather.

These soaps are made to clean boots without stripping out the essential oils that help water-resistant them.

If your boots are very dirty, you can also use a gentle scrub brush, just make sure you’re not too aggressive!

Once your boots are clean, condition them with leather cream or petroleum jelly – this will ensure they last longer.

Final Review

If you’re having trouble getting boots to fit around your calves, try using one of these methods above to fix the problem!

Chances are your boots will fit much better after a few weeks of use.

These tricks will work best if you put them into practice at the beginning of winter or fall before your boots are too tight.

Remember to buy boots in the size you normally wear but go up a half or full size if you want to make room for thick socks!

If your boots are still too tight after using one of these methods, try breaking them in by wearing them around the house or yard. You can also ask a friend with smaller feet to help stretch them out for you if they fit well in the calves!

If your boots are too loose, try using a heel insert or an insole to help them stay on better. Have any tricks of your own? Leave them below in the comments section!


How can I fix wrinkles in boots?

If you’re having trouble with wrinkles in your boots, apply some baby powder or corn starch to your ankles before putting them on. This will help reduce the problem when you walk!

What boots are best for wide calves?

When shopping for boots, pay attention to the calf measurement of each pair. If you have wide calves, it’s best to look for large calf measurements. Chippewa, Streeters, Corral Boots, and Justin Boots are some great brands with wide calf measurements.

How can I extend the life of my cowboy boots?

To get the most life out of your boots, always remember to care for them properly. Clean and condition them with a waterproofing product after each wear and apply a fresh coat of polish at least three times a year to keep them looking their best.

When should I avoid stretching my cowboy boots?

Never stretch out your boots when the leather is dry – it could become damaged or crack. Try not to wear them when they’re too tight – it can be damaging to your feet and legs and may cause foot problems like plantar fasciitis.

Vanshika Dhingra
Hi! I'm Vanshika. I love shoes and handbags, but my addiction is not limited to these two items. You can find me in the shopping malls on weekends browsing through stores for new clothes, accessories, or anything that catches my eye. I am a twenty-something shopaholic who owns some fifty pairs of footwear from every brand and dreams to wake up to a walk-in wardrobe instead of a rising sun.