How to Break In your New Ballglove

You've just received your new Shoeless Joe Ballglove and want to get it "Game-Ready" as quickly as possible. Shoeless Joe gloves are a step ahead of other off-the-shelf gloves as they start the break-in process during manufacturing, so we suggest following their recommendations on how to finish the break-in process so you and your glove are good to go for many seasons.

  1. All new Shoeless Joe gloves come pre-oiled. To finish the break-in process of your new glove, get out and play catch or throw a ball into the webbing repeatedly. This will help form the pocket.
  2. After the first season or use, treat or recondition your glove with a recognized brand lanolin-based glove oil or leather conditioner. 
  3. 2-3 times a year tighten your glove's laces. Keeping your laces tight will help extend the glove’s “life”. This is especially important during the break-in process or throughout the first month or so of use. The laces will stretch most during this time.
  4. Storing a ball in the webbing of your glove will help keep the pocket formed. Some will use a rubber band to help keep a more rounded pocket. 
  5. It's always recommended to keep your hand and fingers fulling inserted into the glove. This helps keep the glove's fold or break formed correctly.
We've all heard "dug-out tricks" or short cuts on how to break-in a new glove quickly. Unfortunately, most of those short cuts damage the leather more quickly and shorten the lifespan of the glove. Here are a few Shoeless Joe specifically advises against doing.
  • Do not use shortcuts to break in your glove quicker.
    • Household cleaners, cooking oil, and personal care items (shaving cream) have changed over the years. They have added ingredients that can be harmful to the leather of your glove.
    • Do not microwave or bake your glove. This can damage the leather, drying it out too quickly.. 
  • Do not leave the glove lying in the back window or trunk of a car. Leaving your glove in the hot car will dry it out and damage the leather. It's a good idea to keep all of your equipment out of extreme environment for storage.
  • If your glove gets wet during practice/game use or perspiration, leave the glove out in front of a fan overnight. This can help keep mildew or mold from forming in your glove. 
  • Do not use your glove as a dog chew toy. New ball gloves smell amazing, and yes, your dog, cat or any other pet may find that smell good enough to eat or use as a restroom. Keep your glove away from pets.