Red Wing Mink Oil vs. Boot Oil Review


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Both have mink oil, the same trusted Red Wing brand, and a loyal user base.

Which one to use? Which one to pick? Stay tuned:

Red Wing Heritage Mink Oil

This one is classic! Ask me, if you were about to use a mink oil paste, which one would you go for? You’re right, this one.

Check price on amazon

The ingredients and packaging

  • Mink oil
  • Lanolin (sheep secreted waxy substance).
  • Silicone (a synthetic polymer aimed for longer lasting and stronger coating).
  • A minimal color, a yellow glow.
  • 3 oz. in a polishing tin container.


  1. Made in the USA
  2. Red Wing is exceptionally cautious about what they are letting you use and how they are producing it. 
  3. It’s cleaner, more translucent, less thick- simply better the cheap mink oil paste. 
  4. Cheap pastes darken A LOT more than Red Wing mink oil paste does. For some instances, you might think you’re putting dark colors instead of cheap mink oil paste. 
  5. It leaves no or less white residue. Again, compare it to the grossly cheap substances- RW paste is light years ahead. 
  6. Better than leather oil for conditioning your boots.
  7. Deep penetration.
  8. Brings more of a matte look, compared to boot grease. On the contrary, it’s shinier than cheap pastes.
  9. You would not need much time.
  10. And you can use your hands, which is fantastic.
  11. You’ll need less for more work. Don’t over-apply.
  12. As all mink oil paste does, it is good for every other essential requirements like softening them up, helping you break into the shoes or boots, help mold the leather around your feet, protecting it from extreme heat, collisions, stains, salt, water, debris, chemicals, mud, stains and so on. 
  13. For reapplying: Reach out to it whenever you feel your boots are kind of drying up.
  14. Color starts to come back once the leather soaks in the paste.
  15. Some old users are madly in love with Red Wing mink oil.
  16. Unexpected user satisfaction.


  • I think it darkens more than Red Wing oil (and it obscures less than other pastes). 
  • It has silicone, and that substance has a bad name to degrade leather. However, some old users had said that it does not damage or do a bad thing to their leather.
  • It has a Red Wing-worth price tag.

Tips and Tricks

People go nuts when it comes to taking care of their Red Wing boots!

There’s such a useful and detailed review out there that I could not avoid:

“I was recommended this product in my local Red Wing store … when I was looking for a care/maintenance product that would properly hydrate the leather while minimizing the darkening effect that most leather oils tend to impart. I’ve since gone on to use & trust it on three different pairs of Red Wing boots of three very different types & colors of leather with great results … The color change is minimal to non-existent in all three pairs … Even on the smooth, shiny leather of the 9011 Beckman, it works wonderfully without causing any ill effects to the look & feel; they only come out looking richer in depth…

“Wait a little while for absorption, then wipe off the excess that isn’t absorbed with a clean cloth. Brush for a bit of a shine if desired. It’s not a polish, but you can pull a bit of a sheen out of it with enough brushing… 

“I’ll gladly continue to use this mink oil paste.”


It’s the best mink oil paste.

Red Wing Heritage All Natural Boot Oil

“My husband was unable to get this product locally. He’s used this for several years to waterproof his hunting and work boots. I found this product on Amazon and purchased it for him. It was exactly what he was looking for to revitalize his casual boots and waterproof them. The only negative thing to say is that it would be useful to receive a sponge or brush to apply it to shoes. Other than that, he was very happy with it and it will last him for many years.”

The ingredients and packaging

  • Mink oil
  • Pine pitch (helps mink oil last longer on your shoe leather as pine pitch is made of pine resin). 
  • No silicone.
  • There’s a yellowish tint in this oil.
  • Classic 8 fl oz. metal container.


  1. Red Wing is Red Wing. I’m a fan. 
  2. Made in the US.
  3. There are many old, recurring buyers. Some of them use nothing else.
  4. They quickly remove surface scuffs.
  5. All-natural ingredients. Their mink oil paste is not 100% natural.
  6. Yeah, like all mink oil, it darkens the color. It darkens less than the paste does. 
  7. You’ll need fewer reapplications.
  8. It’s better for tougher weather conditions. 
  9. While the paste brings a matte look, it’s more glossy.
  10. Of course, it protects your shoe leather, makes it soft and supple, prevents damage, and as a result, lengthens the lifespan.
  11. It takes less time to apply.
  12. Absorbs pretty fast.
  13. When you apply it several times, the leather does not get any darker.

“I was nervous this would severely darken my Iron Ranger 8111’s, but it’s what they recommend at Red Wing. It did slightly but definitely didn’t ruin any patina or color. Very satisfied!”


  • They don’t disclose the exact percentage of ingredients. But that’s bad for their competitors, not bad for us.
  • Sometimes they leak out while shipping. They should have arranged a better way of shipment. 
  • Darkens leather by 1 to 4 shades. Mink oil works that way.

Tips and Tricks

It is always good to test all mink oil product in less visible areas. See for yourself.

That’s how you do it

“First I clean up the boot with horse hair brush, then I use the redwing cleaner to remove any other dust or grime from the boot. After that I work boot oil into the boot using only my hand. I apply generously to my 8114s and let air dry. Finally, I use the leather protector spray to finish it off. The results are amazing. Perfectly maintained boots. I never worry about going into muck, or the woods, or getting dirty in my boots, because they always clean up so nice and the boot oil is great stuff.”


As many users said, they can’t go wrong.

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