How to Fix Scratched Doc Martens: A Step-by-Step Guide

Identifying the Severity of the Scratches

Identifying Severity of Scratches Doc Martens

For many Doc Marten lovers, discovering scratches on their beloved shoes can be a total nightmare. One of the first things you’ll need to do before attempting to fix your Doc Martens is to identify the severity of the scratches. This will determine the appropriate measures to take and help you achieve the best results. There are different types of scratches, and each may require a different approach to repair. In this article, we will review how to assess the severity of the scratches on your Doc Martens and guide you on the best way to fix them.

Light scratches: These are shallow scratches that barely affect the surface of the leather, and they can easily be removed or covered up. Such scratches can be caused by walking on rough, uneven surfaces or by rubbing against other materials. You can spot a light scratch if it doesn’t penetrate the shoe’s upper layer, but it does make the leather look a bit dull. These scratches may also appear as superficial scuffs, and you may notice that the color of your shoe has changed slightly.

To fix light scratches, you will need to use a leather cleaner or polish that matches the color of your shoes. Apply the polish gently on the affected area using a small brush and rub in a circular motion until the scratch disappears. If the scratch is more prominent and doesn’t go away with polishing, you can try using a colored shoe cream or wax. Apply the wax or cream over the scratch in thin layers, allowing each layer to dry fully before applying another. Finally, buff the area with a soft cloth or brush until it matches the rest of the shoe’s texture and color.

Deep scratches: Unlike light scratches, deep scratches are noticeable and can be felt with your fingers. They result from tearing or cutting the leather with sharp objects. To determine if the scratch is deep or not, examine it closely and check whether it goes through the top layer of the leather or just beneath it. The deeper the scratch, the more challenging it will be to remove. Deep scratches may appear as gouges that expose the leather’s raw edge, and they may be accompanied by cracks or cuts that start to peel the leather.

To fix deep scratches, you may need to apply a leather filler or adhesive glue to fill in the damaged area. Leather fillers come in different colors and textures, and you’ll need to choose one that matches your shoe. Apply the filler or glue on the scratch, smoothing it out with a spatula or putty knife. Leave it to dry for a few hours, gently sanding it to level it with the surface of the leather. You can then apply a shoe polish or cream that matches the color of your shoes. For extra protection, add a layer of shoe sealant or leather protector to prevent further scratches.

Conclusion: Identifying the severity of the scratches on your Doc Martens should be the first step when attempting to fix them. Once you’ve determined the extent of the damage, you can take the appropriate measures to repair your shoes. Remember to always take care of your Doc Martens by polishing them regularly, storing them in a cool, dry place, and avoiding unnecessary exposure to rough surfaces. Your Doc Martens will last for many years with proper maintenance and care.

Gather the Necessary Materials

Doc Martens boots repair

If you are a fan of Doc Marten boots, then you should know how frustrating it can be when your favorite pair gets scratched and ruined by an accident. Instead of throwing them out, you can try fixing them yourself with a simple DIY method. In this article, we will guide you through the process of fixing your scratched Doc Martens. To start with, you need to gather the necessary materials:

  • Clear nail polish
  • Cotton swabs
  • Leather cleaner
  • Leather conditioner
  • Microfiber cloth

Clear nail polish is an effective solution to cover up minor scratches on your Doc Martens. The polish will seal the scratches, and help to prevent further damage. Cotton swabs are used to apply the nail polish to the scratched surface. Leather cleaner and conditioner are used to clean and condition the boots. A microfiber cloth is vital to this process as it will not cause further damage to the leather surface.

It’s essential to keep in mind that the polish should match the color of the boots. If you can’t find the correct match, then transparent nail polish will work too.

Cotton swabs will help you apply the polish precisely and securely. You want to avoid using any kind of sharp object to apply the polish as that could cause further damage.

When it comes to leather cleaner and conditioner, not all products are created equal. It’s essential to choose the right cleaner and conditioner, or else you could end up damaging your boots instead of repairing them. Before you start, always read the labels carefully to make sure that the products are suitable for the type of leather on your boots.

A microfiber cloth is an excellent option for these types of boots as it’s gentle on the surface. Microfiber cloths are designed to pick up dirt and debris without causing further damage to the leather surface.

Before you start, make sure that your boots are clean and free of debris. Wipe them down with a damp cloth to remove any dirt or debris on the surface of the boots. Then, you can start with the repairing process.

Repairing the Scratches

Doc Martens Scratches

If you have owned your Doc Martens for a while, some scratches here and there are completely normal. However, if you want to make them look as good as new, there are some steps you can take without spending a fortune on a professional repair. Here are three ways you can fix the scratches on your beloved Doc Martens:

Method 1: Polishing the Leather

The quickest and easiest way to conceal scratches on your leather Doc Martens is by polishing them. Start by cleaning your boots with a damp cloth to remove any dust or dirt. Then, squeeze a small amount of leather wax onto a clean cloth and rub it onto the scratched area. Use circular motions to buff the wax into the leather until the scratches are no longer visible. Allow the wax to dry for a few minutes, and then use another clean cloth to buff the boots until they shine.

You can also use leather oil instead of wax if you prefer. Simply dab a small amount of oil onto a clean cloth, and rub it onto the scratches in a circular motion. Be sure to use only a small amount of oil at a time, as too much can darken the leather. Buff the boots with another cloth until they are shiny.

Method 2: Using Shoe Cream

Doc Martens Scratches

If the scratches on your Doc Martens are deeper, wax or oil may not be enough to conceal them. In this case, you can use shoe cream to fill in the scratches and restore the color of the leather. Start by cleaning your boots with a damp cloth, as before. Then, apply a small amount of shoe cream to the scratches using a clean cloth. Be sure to choose a color that matches your boots. Rub the cream into the scratches using circular motions until the scratches are filled. Allow the cream to dry for a few minutes, and then buff the boots with another clean cloth until they shine.

Shoe cream is not only great for concealing scratches, but it can also help protect your Doc Martens from water damage and other daily wear and tear. So, it’s a great product to have in your shoe care kit.

Method 3: Re-Dyeing Your Doc Martens

Doc Martens Scratches

If your Doc Martens are heavily scratched or discolored, you may want to consider re-dyeing them. Re-dyeing can give your boots a fresh and new look, and it’s not as complicated as it may sound. However, this method requires more time and effort than the previous ones, as well as a bit of experience.

You can buy leather dye in most shoe stores or online. Make sure you choose a dye that matches the color of your boots. Start by cleaning your boots with a damp cloth to remove any dirt or dust. Then, use sandpaper to gently sand the scratched area, as this will help the dye adhere to the leather. Apply a small amount of dye to the scratches, using a small brush or sponge pad, and let it dry for a few minutes. You may need to apply multiple coats of dye to achieve the desired color and coverage. Be sure to let each coat dry completely before applying the next one. Finally, apply a leather wax or oil to condition and protect the boots.

In conclusion, Doc Martens are durable and can last you for years, but they do require some maintenance from time to time. By following these tips, you can easily repair the scratches on your Doc Martens and keep them looking great for years to come. And, don’t forget to show off your amazing boots!

Buffing and Polishing the Leather

Doc Martens Buffing and Polishing Leather

Doc Martens are an iconic footwear brand known for its durable and long-lasting boots. However, even the toughest leather is susceptible to scratches and wear and tear. Fixing scratched Doc Martens is a common problem that many boot-lovers encounter. Fortunately, repairing the scratches on your Doc Martens is easy if you know how to do it. In this article, we’re going to discuss how to fix scratched Doc Martens through buffing and polishing the leather.

Before we delve into the process, it’s important to note that there’s no quick fix to repairing your Doc Martens. Buffing and polishing the leather will require time and patience, but the results will be worth it. Additionally, it would be best to get your hands on a Doc Marten wonder balsam to use after you’ve finished polishing. The balsam helps keep the leather in excellent condition and well protected even after you’ve polished it.

1. Gather your supplies:

Before you start buffing and polishing your Doc Martens, you need to gather your supplies. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Microfiber or soft cloth
  • Leather cleaner or mild detergent
  • Leather conditioner or conditioner cream
  • Doc Marten wonder balsam
  • Brown or black shoe polish
  • Hair dryer

2. Clean your boots:

The first step in repairing your Doc Martens is cleaning them. Using a microfiber or soft cloth, wipe away any debris or dirt on the boots’ surface. Next, use a leather cleaner or mild detergent to wipe the boots’ surface gently. Make sure you don’t use too much cleaner or detergent as it can damage the leather.

3. Condition the leather:

After cleaning, let your boots dry for an hour or two before conditioning the leather. Once they’re completely dry, apply leather conditioner or conditioner cream to the boots. Conditioning the leather helps nourish the material and keeps it supple. Doc Martens might be durable, but they are no different from other leather boots; they need conditioning too.

4. Buff and Polish the leather:

This step is where you will begin to see some significant improvement in your Doc Martens. Apply a small amount of brown or black shoe polish to a soft cloth. Make sure to choose a colour that is closest to your boots’ colour. Using a circular motion, work the shoe polish into your boots until they are fully covered. Again, we want to emphasize that a little polish goes a long way. Be sure to use a small amount of polish and rub it in gently.

After applying the shoe polish, use a hairdryer on high heat and dry the boots for an extended amount of time, around 10-15 minutes. The heat from the dryer will help the leather absorb the shoe polish better. Afterward, use a clean, soft cloth to buff away any excess polish. Finally, apply the Doc Marten wonder balsam to the boots for added protection and shine. And voila! Your boots will now look as good as new.


Buffing and polishing your Doc Martens can make them look as good as new. With the right tools and techniques, you’ll be able to repair any scratches or scuffs on the boots’ surface. Remember that patience and effort are required to get the best results. By using the right techniques to care and maintain your Doc Martens, you can keep your boots in excellent condition for many more years.

Preventing Future Scratches

Preventing Future Scratches

After you’ve successfully fixed your scratched Doc Martens, you definitely don’t want them to get scuffed and scratched again. The best way to ensure that they won’t is by taking preventative measures. Here are some tips to help you prevent future scratches on your beloved Doc Martens:

Apply a protective coating

Doc Martens Coating

One of the best ways to prevent future scratches and scuffs on your Doc Martens is by applying a protective coating. There are numerous products available both online and at shoe stores that you can apply to your shoes to help protect them from scratches and other types of damage. These coatings will create a barrier between your shoes and the outside world, helping to keep them looking great for longer.

Avoid wearing them in rough terrain

Doc Martens in the bushes

Rough terrain is perhaps one of the biggest culprits when it comes to scuffs and scratches on your shoes. Avoid wearing your Doc Martens in terrain that can easily scratch them. This means you might have to think twice before taking them for a walk in the woods or even in a rocky area. The more careful you are with your shoes, the less likely they are to become scratched.

Store them properly

Doc Martens storage

Proper storage is an important factor in preventing scratches on your Doc Martens. If you toss them in a pile with other shoes, chances are they’ll get scratched or scuffed. Store them in a separate area where they won’t touch other shoes or objects that can damage them. If you don’t have a specific place to store them, consider getting a shoe rack or even a shoe box, which can help protect them from scratches.

Use a shoe horn

Doc Martens shoe horn

Another way to prevent scratches on your Doc Martens is to use a shoe horn. These handy little tools make it easier to put your shoes on and take them off without scratching the backs, which is a common place for scratches to occur. Shoe horns are far less expensive than taking your shoes to a cobbler to fix scratches, and they can help prolong the life of your beloved Doc Martens.

Clean them regularly

Doc Martens cleaning

It might seem counterintuitive, but one of the best ways to prevent scratches on your Doc Martens is to clean them regularly. Dirt and grime can cause scratches, so it’s important to clean your shoes frequently. Use a soft cloth or brush to remove dirt and debris, and make sure to dry them properly. Regular cleaning will also ensure that your Doc Martens always look their best, even after years of use.

By following these simple tips, you can easily prevent future scratches and scuffs on your cherished Doc Martens. Remember, the more care you take with your shoes, the fewer scratches they’ll acquire, and the longer they’ll last.

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