How to Clean Leather in 4 Simple Steps
It's easier than you think.
Here’s what you’ll need: three clean cloths; two bowls of clean, warm water; and dish soap.
As a note, if you’re looking for a specialized substitute for dish soap, there are also a handful of nontoxic leather cleaners on the market. These can also be used to clean leather effectively and tend to be applied in the exact same way.
Mix a very small amount of dish soap (one-eighth of a cup should be sufficient) into one of the bowls of warm water. By opting for nontoxic soap, you’ll avoid chemicals found in harsher detergents that can damage the quality and color of the leather.
Next, dip one of the cloths into the soapy water and gently wipe down the leather in the direction of the grain. If you can’t visually determine the direction of the grain, don’t worry: Simply keep your motions gentle and consistent.
Finally, dip a second cloth into the clean water and carefully wipe down the leather, following the same direction and pattern. Make sure your cloth is only damp, not soaking wet, as too much moisture can create further damage.
Once the cleaning solution has been applied and removed, use your dry cloth to wipe down the leather, again in the direction of the grain.
While it might go without saying, avoid using rough or textured cloths, and instead opt for soft, smooth variations like .
Allow the leather to fully air-dry away from heat or direct sunlight. Never ever use a blow-dryer to expedite the process, and always ensure that the leather is 100% dry before you wear it again.
One of the best things you can do to protect your leather against future wear is using a high-quality . Be sure to look for something water-resistant, and avoid harsh chemicals like heavy-duty saddle leather.
This story was published at an earlier date and has since been updated.
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