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Full-grain leather and Nubuck suede take water repellant products well but keep in mind that they won't waterproof a hiking boot NOT designed to be waterproof in first place. The repellant will help shed water but if you're walking through streams or deep puddles you're going to get wet.
You may or may not need waterproof hiking boots. Consider environment you usually hike in and how long your trips are. If you do a lot of short desert hiking trips you probably don't need waterproof boots. Actually in a dry environment they'll only make it harder for your feet to breathe (more numerous or heavy layers mean less breathability). Nylon mesh fabric breathes better than leather, but remember you're making tradeoffs for durability, support, and protection.
If you would like to learn more about selecting your next pair of hiking boots and what's important regarding fit and construction click here. Or take a look at this related article to help say goodbye to blisters caused by poor quality hiking socks.
Marc learned about quality gear when his pup tent flooded forcing him to sleep in his tiny 2-seat Honda CRX. His hiking equipment & camping gear guides & reviews save you time & money. Subscribe to his camping & hiking newsletter & get the most usable info. FREE! © Marc Wiltse. Reprint permission if author, copyright, links & this notice are intact.