Nothing can beat leather holsters for many gunners, even though some other materials, like Kydex and Nylon, have many advantages.

The leather gears are much quieter and more comfortable than the others. They can also last a long time, as long as they receive good care and maintenance.

You may have difficulty drawing or holstering your handgun when you buy one. That’s why you need to know how to treat the inside of a leather holster.

A Detailed Guide On How to Treat the Inside of a Leather Holster

How to Treat the Inside of a Leather Holster?

We recommend using a blocking technique to stretch your holster to get a smooth draw. Then, all you need to do is put your firearm in a thick plastic bag. It is okay to use Ziploc freezer bags or shopping bags.

How to Treat the Inside of a Leather Holster
It is easy to treat inside this item

Some gunners use two sheets of wax paper (waxed side towards their holsters). Wedge your gun down into this holster, then let it sit for at least one day.

Then remove your bag and check out the draw. Finally, you can use your holster as you would for intended use, without your plastic bag.

You should not use lubricants, such as Leather Lightning and spray silicone to handle the inside of leather holsters. Besides, you will not want your firearm slippery, as it can unintentionally slide out of your holster.

In addition, you do not want to tarnish your firearm’s finish. The interiors of holsters are hand-finished to provide the ultimate protection for pistols.

Three Reasons Why a Leather Holster is Better 

How to Treat the Inside of a Leather Holster 1
Leather items are very durable

This material is considered the traditional material for holsters, which gunners still prefer. Thanks to the organic nature of this material, it has always been favorite and hard to beat by any modern synthetic material.

High Durability

Leather items are always preferred for their durability and versatility. They are durable as the boots and coats that we use every day.

These items can last a lifetime if they are correctly cared for and maintained. Skilled repair persons or leather makers can quickly and easily repair these holsters if necessary.


This material always stands out for its comfort, whether you’re wearing a single shoulder, double shoulder, exotic skin shoulder holster, or hunting shoulder.

These items tend to mold into the shape of a gun over time due to their natural properties. And interestingly, they will mold to the bodies of gunners.

This material is also more comfortable as it is softer than most other materials used to make Holsters. Therefore, it is not surprising that it has become a good choice for making holsters.

This material will not scratch your skin during rubbing. Even after putting the weapon in your holster, it will be very comfortable. This item will adapt to your body instead of your body having to adapt to the holster.


In addition to the durability and comfort these items offer, they also have an eye-catching appearance. That is also one of the great advantages of these holsters. In particular, the longer you use this gear, the better it keeps looking.

  • Over time, these items will develop natural markings.
  • Aged leather should be unique and eye-catching.
  • The markings will cover their surface and add another dimension to the aesthetics.
  • Give the gunner a classic elegance.

How to Properly Store Leather Holsters?

How to Treat the Inside of a Leather Holster 2
This item should not be exposed to sunlight for too long

You can expect this item to last long with proper care and maintenance.

Things You Should Do

  • Get rid of impurities with a smooth finish using warm water with lotion or glycerin soap.
  • It is possible to clean holsters using Fiebings Foaming Saddle Soap or  Bick 4 Conditioner, which is very sparingly.
  • Clean your gear three to five times a month.
  • Wipe off dust, dirt, blood, and sweat using soft towels.
  • Use one of the quality soft-bristled brushes to scrub stubborn stains or dirt.
  • If your gear has dampened, it is essential to place it in a dry and cool area and let it dry.
  • You can remove minor cosmetic scratches by rubbing olive and saddle or baby oil.
  • It is wise to rub alcohol in a circular motion to reduce the appearance of deeper scratches.
  • Make sure to have at least one item to prevent your holster from coming into contact with your body, such as a shirt, to minimize perspiration.
  • Store your item in a dry and cool place. You should also wrap it in its original box or a soft cotton cloth when not in use.

Things You Shouldn’t Do

  • Leave holsters on a car dash or expose them to direct sunlight for long periods.
  • Store these items in an outdoor shed, the trunk of a car, an attic, or the garage.
  • Submerge your gear in water or other liquids.
  • Dring these items with a radiator, oven, laundry machine, or hairdryer.
  • Utilize Neat’s oil, leather conditioner, or mink oil, which soften or distort the molding.
  • Store your gear within reach of dogs, which may chew or gnaw on leather items.


Could Chrome Tanned Material Be Utilized For Holsters And Sheaths?

No manufacturer makes their holsters from chrome-tanned leathers or sheaths.

This material contains chromium salts which can cause metal corrosion if they come into contact with your handguns made of stainless steel or carbon steel.

In addition, many newer guns finished with manganese phosphate will quickly go bad by an extended contact.

This material will keep chemical salts through a tanning process. These salts will feature corrosive effects on blued steel by long-term exposure. Not only corrode blued steel, but these salts also corrode stainless steel and carbon weapons.

Chromium salts even cause the speckling effect, leading your firearm to look like it features freckles.

Can Vegetable Tanned Leather Holsters And Sheaths Lead to Rust?

This material is widely used in the production of holsters due to its incredible hardness and excellent moisture resistance. Yet, it can facilitate the oxidation reaction that produces rust when exposed to metal items for a long time.

Specifically, when this material is in contact with copper-containing or brass metals for long periods, it will produce verdigris, a bright blue-green compound.

The good news is that a simple wipe can easily remove verdigris. Besides, you can handle severe verdigris with the help of club soda.

Can I Utilize Suede Be For Making Holsters

Most of the suede is chrome-tanned, making it not an ideal pick for making leather sheaths and holsters.

Besides the potential problems of utilizing chrome-tanned material for holsters and sheaths mentioned above, suede features more surface due to its porous, buffed surface.

Its large surface will tend to hold and attract more moisture that can increase the oxidation reaction rate, rusting metal items. Therefore, rust may be higher if you use suede material in places with high humidity.

Should I Store My Firearms and Blades In Holsters?

Whatever holster you use, it is wise to avoid storing your pistol in leather holsters and sheaths. All leather items can retain and attract moisture, promoting oxidation that corrodes steel and other metals.

Which Is Better, Leather or Kydex?

It really comes down to personal preference. Kydex models are the winners when it comes to reholstering and retention. Meanwhile, their leather counterpart will take the crown when talking about style and comfort.

The Bottom Line

Hopefully, you’ve known what to do to treat inside your holster and how to preserve it properly. In that way, you can expect your gear to last a lifetime.

Thank you for reading! Please share this article if it was helpful to you.

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