Leather is a material of many qualities. It is in equal parts luxurious and practical, making for high-quality, fashionable, yet durable clothes and accessories. At the same time, leather is known for being both hardy and fragile.
While real leather can withstand the tests of the elements in most situations, one thing that can throw a curveball is water on leather.
If you have accidentally soaked a precious leather bag and are frantically wondering what to do when leather gets wet, we are here to help you.
Read this simple and straightforward guide on how to dry leather to preserve your treasured possessions.
How to Dry Leather Step One: Assess the Damage
The first thing you need to do is to assess the damage. When answering the question "can you get leather wet?", there are two possible answers. The first concerns 'light' water exposure.
If you have, say, spilled a glass of water on your leather wallet, then you likely don't have anything to worry about. Just wipe the water off with a dry towel and move on.
However, if your leather product has been submerged in liquid, then you have wet leather and you will need to act quickly to save your item.
Oil-Based Leather vs Water-Based Leather
There are two types of leather; oil-based and water-based leather. Oil-based leather damages much more easily from liquid exposure than water-based leather does. If your wet leather is water-based, then simply dab it with a dry cloth.
Then, you need to allow the water inside the leather to evaporate on its own, which you can do by leaving the item outside. Ideally, you should stuff some newspaper into the item to help absorb the water.
If your leather is oil-based, more drastic measures will need to be taken. What happens when leather gets wet if it is oil-based is often not good. It will rapidly degrade, wrinkle, and eventually fall apart.
If your oil-based leather sustains water damage, begin by dabbing away all of the surface-level moisture with a dry towel. It must be completely dry before you move onto the next step.
After this, you can place it in the sun, ideally somewhere with plenty of airflow, to dry the inside of the item. Do not, under any circumstances, place newspaper in wet oil-based leather shoes.
Once you think the item is dry, you will want to apply a coat of leather oil to the exterior to help it recover. Add another coat each day until the leather appears to have gotten back to its normal, healthy state.
Protecting Your Leather
Once you have successfully dried your leather products, the next step is to ensure they are properly protected against future damage.
For this, you can add a leather conditioner to your products to keep them strong. You can also use a standard softening cream or lotion to help protect water-damaged leather and allow it to regain its original softness.
These simple measures will reduce the risk of future irreversible water damage.
Shop for Quality Leather Products Today
Now that you know how to dry leather, it's time to find the right products for you.
You can shop for our latest sale items on our site today to find quality, bespoke, and exquisite leather items that will last you a lifetime.