The Best Glue for Fixing Boots

Use shoe glue for repairs so you don't have to buy new boots.

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Boots persist as a smokin' hot fashion must-have, so there are probably more than a few pairs in your closet. This fabulous footwear has outgrown its original function of keeping legs and feet warm and dry in harsh weather. Boots now have high heels, open toes, buckles, bows and various other bling. High-fashion boots are also likely to be far less sturdy than their winter and mountain-climbing counterparts. But the glue you use to fix your favorite hikers works equally well when the sole of your gold patent leather bootie separates from the upper.

Type of Glue

It's best to use a glue or adhesive made specially for footwear when your boot's upper has a hole or tear, or when the sole has a hole or starts to come loose. Shoe Goo and Freesole are two urethane adhesives developed specifically for shoe and boot repair. Both are water-resistant and create a strong bond so that the repair lasts, no matter how much you walk or run around in your boots. Regular bonding glues might work temporarily but weren't created for the pounding most boots take, whether hiking up a hill or carrying you from club to club.

Fixing Holes

Originally created to fix "tennis toe" holes caused by players dragging the toes of their tennies while serving, Shoe Goo became popular with skaters and others whose boots and shoes endure tons of wear and tear. The goo is water-resistant right out of the tube, according to the manufacturer's website, and can also be used to seal soles and reinforce boots before they sustain damage. You can use Shoe Goo to actually fill in a hole in your boots, whether on the toe or the sole, and to repair tears on the uppers.

Gluing Soles

A loose sole on your boot can be dangerous as well as frustrating. "Backpacker" magazine recommends McNett's Freesole adhesive to reattach loose hiking boot soles. Freesole is made with "the same material as most shoe soles," according to McNett's site, so it creates a quick, strong and lasting bond. Use it on your funky and fashionable boots, too; the glue won't know the difference.

Tips for Repair

As with most gluing repair projects, follow the manufacturer's instructions when you fix your injured boot. To reattach a sole and keep it that way, clamp the upper and lower together or put a weight on top of the boot. Let the glue dry and set overnight to make sure it bonds. Check in the morning to see if it needs another coat. If your boot is fixed and ready to go, you can head back out in style.

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