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Waterproofing a leather hat? Answered

My day-to-day hat is a leather fedora.

Most of the time, it's great, but it does leak through the crown if I'm out in heavy rain for more than, say, 30-45 minutes.

This isn't normally a huge problem, since I'm not often out in heavy rain that long that often, but it is a problem on a wet camp, when I'm outdoors all day.

Unfortunately, I can't polish it, as the finish is matt, borderline suede.

Any ideas, folks?

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Downunder35m (author)2014-12-18

For suede your options are a bit limited if you want to keep the original color.

I had quite good success on my boots with the fabric protector spray by Scotch/3M.

It takes 2-3 rounds to fully "soak" the leather, you do it until it looks a bit wet.

Several hours of drying in between and now they don't mind if I step into a deep puddle.

The traditional way is by using oil or wax but it turns the leather rather dark, although especially wax gives a long lasting protection.

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Kiteman (author)Downunder35m2014-12-18

Oh, I wonder if that would work if I sprayed the inside...?

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Downunder35m (author)Kiteman2014-12-18

It does but the leather soaks in the water from the outside until it drips through the seams.

And even if it does not the leather goes really hard when drying again.

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caitlinsdad (author)2014-12-18

You should try that Rustoleum Neverwet, it dries clear but may impact the texture of the leather a bit. Seam seal all the seams like a tent first. Silicone oils and waxes will darken the leather.

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