Although leather is a sturdy product much acclaimed for its vintage characteristics, certain leather care is required for the product to maintain its promise of ageing well and being your life long partner.
Here are some best practices that allow a quality leather product to stay true to its promise and maintain its vibrancy over time.
A quality leather conditioner is a great way to take care of your investment into a leather product as it keeps the leather fresh. When left exposed to dust or locked away in a closet for a very long time, bring the leather back to life by first brushing off the dust and then caressing the conditioner with a dry cloth onto the entire surface gently. Don’t rub hard or make leather soaked but apply just enough for the conditioner to penetrate into the pores. With regular use, it`s advisable to apply once or twice a year but in case if you experience extremely dry conditions, doing it every few months isn’t a bad idea.
Leather conditioners are supposed to act as moisturizers that rejuvenate the skin making it look healthy and full of life.
Clean The Dirt And Dust
Dirt and dust particles are not good for any object of use, not just leather. If living in an arid environment or somewhere where dust settles down on objects quite frequently, just try and brush off the dust with a clean dry or slightly wet cloth every now and then as dust is one thing that can make way into the most tiny of openings.
A good old leather cleaner (there are a few out there in the market) is a useful thing to have if you are a leather fan as it`s quite useful in wiping off the dust and dirt. Remember not to rub, but to dab gently always whenever using any sort of cleaner or conditioner on leather.
Wrap a dry or slightly moist cloth round the finger or use a soft brush to clean the corners of the hardware of your bag or jacket to make the overall look clean rather than filled with dust. This practice can be more frequent as compared to applying leather cleaner and should just take a few minutes.
It`s not that dust is harmful to leather in a certain way, but it just overtakes the persona away from anything you may be using. Why let it settle on your classy leather briefcase or jacket making it look dusty.
Is Wet Leather Ok?
As leather is water resistant to some extent, slight exposure to water is not a real problem as long as the water does not saturate into the pores. As soon as you identify water on you leather, remove it with a dry cloth or sponge and don’t let it seep in. Fine. End of story.
In case, a rain shower gets your leather bag, wallet or jacket all soaked up, the water will leave its stains on leather. First, eek out the water stain with a sponge. Once the water from the stain has been sucked into the sponge, dab the stain further with a dry cloth gently and gently until the impact of the stain is left to a bare minimum and then leave it to dry out naturally. No exposure to heat or else the leather will shrink and look damaged from that part.
Stuffing up your leather bag or wallet appropriately with some paper should allow it to hold its shape better as it`s in the process of drying out. As the water takes away some of the natural oil content of leather with it, condition your leather product after drying out to reenergize the leather back to its natural state.
Storing Leather Over Prolonged Periods Of Time
- Don’t store you leather bag or jacket in plastic.
- Use a fabric bag to cover your leather bag or jacket. Dust bags are nice. A box is also nice which has a ventilation hole of some sort.
- Don’t keep your leather product under a heavy object.
- Store leather away from heat, sunlight, humidity, dust. They can prove to be slow death for anything.
- Leather needs to breathe just like any other skin. Give it exposure to air after every few weeks for a while.
Word Of Caution and Some Advise
- Always first apply a new leather conditioner or cleaner to a small part first and leave the leather product for a day preferably and evaluate the result. Once satisfied with the result, carry on without concern.
- A good quality leather cleaner and conditioner applied once or twice a year should keep the leather supple and healthy. Leather can sometimes crack as well if it gets too dry, Keeping it moisturized is always a good idea.
- Immediately remove any sticky object from the leather with a clean damp cloth. Don’t rub but dab. Rubbing can make the object spread to other parts rather than coming off.
- A damp cloth and soft brush for regular cleaning from dust and dirt is always recommended.
- Don’t heat leather as it can damage the fibres considerably.
- Don’t use plastic to suffocate leather.
- Don’t dry leather under sunlight.
- Anything that can leak onto leather should be kept in a pouch like cosmetics, pens etc.
- Don’t store leather exposed to sunlight as it may lead to the leather cracking up. Don’t store in an extremely humid environment either, try to ensure there`s some ventilation and air flow.
- Don’t soak leather into water or put it into a washing machine for cleaning, instead use a good quality leather conditioner or cleaner.
- Not a good idea to iron your leather jacket either. The heat can make the leather shrink, but if you`re desperate (which you shouldn’t be), place a cotton cloth over the leather and iron on the lowest temperature without steam or water application and condition afterwards.
A quality leather bag or jacket made with other quality hardware should last a life long if taken care of appropriately. Keeping into consideration, the above mentioned tips and guidelines should help you maintain your leather products with comfort and peace of mind.