Playing baseball can be all fun and games until you get a new set of gloves; that’s when an actual challenge begins. Being a baseball player or a fan, you may already have an idea of how the state of new baseball gloves can influence your performance. The main reason behind it is the fact that leather gloves are unplayable and stiff when taken out of the package. You need to play until the break-in to play comfortably. As they are quite expensive, keeping your baseball gloves well-maintained is important to ensure usability and moisture.
While other things may become damaged due to frequent usage, baseball gloves improve their performance. They are designed to take the beatings and toughen up so they can easily withstand the ball’s pounding. In addition, baseball gloves are also required to have enough flexibility to catch the ball. So, how to break in these leather gloves? People suggest several ways, one of them is using mink oil. This leads to another question: can you use mink oil on baseball gloves without damaging them?
Is Mink Oil a Good Choice for Your Gloves?
How mink oil can impact your leather gloves depends on the gloves. Despite some people claiming that it is beneficial, mink oil can sometimes also fail to provide the desired results. This product uses fatty layers under the mink skins, and even if it works, it works for a short time. Even though it is said that mink oil won’t immediately harm your gloves and can work like a leather conditioner to moisturize your gloves, long-term usage of the item may not be useful for the gloves. Below are mentioned some pros and cons of using mink oil on baseball gloves.
Can You Use Mink Oil on Baseball Gloves?
Possible Benefits of Using Mink Oil on the Gloves:
Softening the Gloves:
If your baseball gloves are made of leather, they are likely to become brittle and dry over time. Mink oil can be helpful in conditioning the leather so the gloves can become softer. When the oil is applied to the baseball gloves, it will penetrate into their fibers. As a result, the gloves can have an increased lifespan and flexibility. The durability of your gloves may also increase after the fiber in the gloves is lubricated properly. This means that the gloves may be less likely to experience wear and tear.
Retaining the Shape:
If you don’t store your baseball gloves properly or take good care of them, they might end up losing their shape. That’s where mink oil can be useful; it can help the gloves retain their shape. By using mink oil, you can keep the gloves in their original shape for a long time. What happens is that mink oil lubricates the gloves’ fiber and helps them maintain the correct shape.
Restoring the color:
In case the baseball gloves start losing their original color, mink oil can help them to restore the color too. When mink oil is applied to a product made of real leather, it can darken its color and make it richer. In addition, mink oil can also be beneficial in protecting your gloves from the sun, along with other environmental aspects that may lead to a faded color. As a result, baseball gloves can look new and richer in color for a long time.
The outcome of moisture damage on the gloves can be quite damaging, which is why you should make to protect them from water damage. Keeping your baseball gloves dry is important, particularly if you play in wet conditions. You can apply mink oil to provide your gloves with more water resistance. Mink oil can create a barrier on the gloves’ surface to prevent water from penetrating into your gloves’ leather. The baseball gloves having mink oil applied will have lesser chances of suffering from water damage.
Another advantage of using mink oil on gloves is that it can prevent them from cracking and drying. Preventing the gloves from cracking is important because it can lead the gloves to become less effective and lose their shape. Furthermore, mink oil can also help prevent the gloves from drying out, thereby preventing them from possible damage.
Applying mink oil to the gloves every now and then can be helpful in making them more durable. That’s because the gloves’ fibers can be lubricated by mink oil. In addition, mink oil can also prevent the gloves from breaking down.
Using Mink Oil on Baseball Gloves – General Concerns:
Despite some benefits of applying mink oil on the gloves, there are some concerns, too, which should be taken into account before applying the oil.
Darken the Gloves:
One of the drawbacks of using mink oil on the gloves is that it may darken the color of your gloves in the long term. The reason behind it is that mink oil consists of oils that have a tendency to darken the gloves, specifically after being exposed to sunlight.
Sticky Texture Due to Oil Residue:
Applying mink oil on the gloves may also make them sticky due to oil residue. As a result, you may be required to adjust your gloves time after time during the game because the ball won’t come off them easily. Moreover, mink oil can also make your gloves more slippery, which means the chances of dropping the ball or even injuring yourself will increase. Therefore, in some cases, applying mink oil can worsen your overall performance.
Applying Mink Oil on the Gloves – FAQs:
Can I use any oil for a baseball glove?
Does mink oil harm leather?
Although it may have several benefits on the base of all gloves, applying mink oil in the long term may also be harmful. Hence, refrain from applying too frequently or in a greater amount. Otherwise, it may make the leather very soft, prevent airflow and clog its pores.
So, with all the shortcomings and benefits, can you use mink oil on baseball gloves? The answer is yes and no. After stating the benefits and the relevant concerns, we can say that mink oil can be either beneficial or harmful, depending on the gloves. It’s better if you learn both the pros and cons and then decide if you should apply it on the gloves or not since every glove’s material may be impacted by mink oil differently.