Leather Care: A Guide for Your Leather Accessories
Your leather accessories need proper care in order to last for years to come. Here's a guide to leather care for all of your important accessories.
Leather can look tough or it can look elegant, traditional or distinctively modern. Whichever look suits your style, an understanding of basic leather care will keep your leather accessories in beautiful condition for many years.
To take care of all your favorite leather pieces, here's what you need to know:
What to Avoid:
Steer Clear of Moisture
Water will damage your leather, so if the weather calls for rain, it's best to leave your leather boots and bag at home. Water can permanently darken leather and damage it's softness. If your leather does become wet, let it dry naturally and avoid using a heater, hair dryer or fireplace which can warp the leather and cause cracking.
Leather is very absorbent making it very vulnerable to the harsh effects of salt exposure. The winter season can be especially damaging to leather shoes in particular. When snow and ice cover the streets prompting salt trucks cover the ground with salt, your shoes can easily become ruined.
Avoid permanent damage by cleaning off the salt as soon as you're able with a damp, warm washcloth. If salt stains remain, try a solution of half water, half white vinegar to wipe away the salt.
Don't Tan Your Hide
Leaving your leather in the sun for extended periods of time will erode the quality of your leather. Though it's perfectly fine to wear and use your leather accessories outside, leaving a leather bag or boots out in direct sunlight for hours will cause damage.
How to Clean and Repair:
Handle With Care
Leather can easily absorb oil and grease so if you want to keep the surface clean, handle with clean hands only.
Leather Care Cleaning
To clean your leather, look for a cleaner made specifically for genuine leather and apply using a gentle circular motion. Wipe gently with a damp cloth as soon as it's clean and remove all residue to avoid absorption.
Leather has a tendency to crack and dry out over time if it isn't conditioned from time to time.
If you're wondering how to condition leather, look for a leather-approved conditioner to keep the surface supple and to add shine. A little bit of product goes a long way so avoid using too much at once.
Keep in mind that leather treatment can temporarily darken you leather but the color will slowly lighten as the conditioner or cleaner dries.
All Leather Treatments Are Not the Same
Not all leather is the same so the same cleaner should not be used on all leather accessories.
Waxes, brushes and polishes are suitable for patent leather boots or dress shoes as well as some leather bags. For raw leather belts, bags, boots, phone cases and other accessories, these treatments can damage the leather.
Classy dress shoes and bags are one thing, however. If the rugged leather look is more your style, natural wear and tear and the occasional scratches will only add to the look you love.
Invest in Quality
One of the best ways to keep your leather looking good is by investing in a quality leather product to begin with. Browse our collection of fine leather goods and accessories. With the proper leather care, you'll be able to enjoy a product that will stay beautiful and stylish for years to come.