How to Harden Leather Using Wax

Things You'll Need

  • Boiling pan
  • Wax
  • Hardener
  • Dye (optional)
  • Leather
  • Wax paper

How to Harden Leather Using Wax. There are multiple ways of hardening leather. One of the easiest ways is using wax. Hardened leather is often used to make shoes and jackets as well as armor and costumes. Listed below are the few easy steps required to harden leather with wax.

Put your wax in the designated boiling pot. For the sake of your pan it is safest if you use a double boiler. This will prevent the bottom of the pan from getting too hot and burning the wax.

Add the hardener. The container will offer the ratio for wax-to-hardener most desirable for the specific product you use.

Dye it. It is not necessary to dye the leather, but if you want to, add the dye after the hardener.

Drop the pieces of leather in the wax. Multiple pieces can be put in together depending on the size of each piece.

Wait for the bubbles. The leather will begin to bubble. These bubbles can last up to 10 minutes depending on the chosen leather. When the bubbles stop remove the leather.

Place the leather smooth side up on wax paper and wait for it to dry.


  • If you are hardening the leather for wearing then use half of the hardener more than the container recommends. When dying the leather make sure you can do all of it in one sitting. Matching the color will be very tricky if you have to go back and try again. If you are going to shape the leather place it between two pieces of wax paper and secure it to a shape you would like. This can be done by strapping it to something else with the same shape or by holding it in place until it dries.

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