What is a safe, solvent-free way to waterproof my boots?
At this time of year many of us like to waterproof our winter boots, and all the commercially available products for this purpose use toxic solvents, most of them petroleum-based. A wool expert introduced me to lanolin as a safe alternative leather waterproofer. Lanolin is the oil in sheepís wool, and it is a natural water repellent that can be removed with no harm to the sheep. Available in pharmacies as “Anhydrous Lanolin,” and in a handy tube, lanolin is a rich, lubricating cream that can easily be rubbed into leather. A one ounce tube costs about $3, but a little dabíl do ya. Health food stores now offer a liquid lanolin used for cosmetic purposes for about $1 an ounce.