How To Clean A Leather Jacket Easy For Less
In the world of leather, there are many things to consider in making sure our leather items last longer. With utmost care and the use of appropriate leather care treatments and products, we would be sure to appreciate the given results over time.
Learning how to clean a leather jacket is an easy task with the right equipment and know-how. In order to achieve these with minimal effort, we need to know the following basic concepts before getting to work:
Take note of manufacturer requirements
Anyone who has own a pre-loved leather jacket already has an idea how to clean the material inside and out. Yet, it is still important to know how the leather jacket manufacturer would prefer to have you approach cleaning your leather jacket with their own care instructions.
For newbie owners of fashionable leather jackets, many manufacturers also include special notices on how to clean the jacket such as the temperature of the water before washing the product. Also, it is recommended to observe how the leather company does it as they know how to make it worth your while.
A quick spot wipe
There are instances when a leather jacket is not worn all the time, especially if you live in an area with changing seasons. Although it's tempting to always include wearing a leather jacket to match your daily outfits, however, extreme weather can ultimately destroy the quality of your leather product.
If your leather jacket has any spots, blemishes, or marks acquired from being kept too long in the closet, give the jacket a thorough quick wipe using a damp soft cloth first. Make sure to scan the entire jacket so to not leave out unseen marks when wiping.
In cases when there is visible grime or hardened dirt within the creases of your leather jacket, try to get most of it off using the soft cloth. In the presence of bright-colored or shiny stains, take care not to rub them off vigorously as these might spread further or discolor the leather material.
Giving the leather jacket a soft wipe is also best done with a leather stain-removal product. After spraying a little of the application on those stains or marks, always rub them off with a soft damp cloth. Note: Using sponges or anything else with rough surfaces to wipe off these marks would leave ugly scratches on your leather product.
A good example of a stain remover is the Atlas Leather Cleaner from Atlas Leather Care Company. This product is a natural, non-toxic and pH balanced formula that works best with light-colored leather goods.
Using household cleaning products on leather jackets
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Some DIYers are used to cleaning anything with detergents. For leather jackets, it is already regarded not a taboo to use detergents on them as well, since there are leather care companies which are producing safe, nature-based detergents.
A suitable leather care detergent is from Otter Wax called Saddle Soap : All Natural Leather Cleaner: 2oz Tin. This saddle soap leather cleaner contains all natural ingredients, such as castile and beeswax plus lemongrass oil. It is also without any hint of silicone nor petroleum-based ingredients, and is 100% safe to use on leather jackets.
Aside from mink oil, the use of olive oil as a leather cleaning applique is already considered as an alternative product for cleaning leather jackets. Fun fact: Did you know that olive oil not only serves a cleaning purpose? It also revives the natural quality of any leather jacket since it also gives back lost nutrients to any leather good.
To use, dab a sufficient amount of olive oil on the area to be cleaned using a soft cloth. Rub the oil over it gently until you noticed the marks or stains are gone.
Afterwards, rub on the affected spot again this time using another piece of soft cloth that is dipped in equal parts of white vinegar + olive oil mixture. Place the leather jacket to dry in open air. When it's thoroughly dry, polish the leather jacket with a third soft cloth and you will notice the stained part looking new (like nothing happened).
If you have older leather jackets, these can be revived and looked like new again with linseed oil. How does it work?
Prepare a small mixture using 3 parts linseed oil (pre-boiled) and 1 part white vinegar in a small bowl. Then dip a soft piece of cloth in the mixture and use it to rub softly on the affected part, especially in the dry-looking areas of your leather jacket.
The mixture works best when absorbed into the area getting cleaned, so there's no need to rub it off. Just polish the leather jacket using a soft cloth to allow the linseed oil-white vinegar mixture to seep into the leather jacket and give it a moisturized effect.
Leather jackets can be machine-washed, too!
Nowadays, leather products are getting made to withstand being laundered using a washing machine. To do this, place 2 tablespoons of your choiced laundry detergent in the detergent container of the washing machine.
Remove any items left inside the leather jacket, then zip it up close. With the jacket turned inside out, place it inside the machine.
Note: It is also safe to add other non-leather items while the jacket is getting cleaned such as dark-colored jeans or socks. Doing so will further protect the leather jacket while it's inside the washing machine.
Add cold water in the machine, noting on the the least load setting and wash the leather jacket within the shortest time possible. Once the time is up, inspect the leather jacket for any signs of wear and tear.
Some stretching is also needed if you think the sleeves of your leather jacket have shrunk or shortened a bit. Make sure to do this while the jacket is still wet. Otherwise, waiting for it to dry would leave you with a shorter sleeve instead.
Now it's time to dry the leather jacket. One way to know if the material is made of full-grain leather is by checking any little scars or imperfections within the hide, according to Stylenochaser.
Place the full-grain leather jacket in the dryer and have it spin dried using medium heat setting. Remove the jacket after ten minutes has passed, then turn it inside out to check if it's already dry enough.
Repeat this step every ten minutes until you feel the jacket is almost dry (not completely dry yet). Leave it in open air until it is fully dry.
Special reminder: If the leather jacket is of a special or shiny finish, finish the drying process by hanging the jacket inside a closed, warm bathroom. Regularly check the jacket at times and even out the sleeves by stretching them if necessary. It is also recommended to use a leather conditioner such as Leather Honey Leather Conditioner, as this is safe to use for people highly sensitive to various smells.
Cleaning the jacket lining
This leather jacket part is not to be ignored, as there are times when natural dirt or sweat can leave an off-smell on its surface, according to a World of Leathers post. The best way to remove any smell on it is to have the jacket hung to dry or using a vacuum cleaner on it while it is spread on the floor (inside out).
Restore the smell of new leather as well with the use of a leather freshener like Gliptone Leather Conditioner 250ml - GT11. Apply a small amount of the cream on the smelly areas of the leather jacket with a soft piece of cloth.
If the jacket is too dry, reapply the cream at least twice within 48 hours. Make sure to test the product first on a hidden area of the jacket before application.
What to do with leather jacket stains?
Some stains don't easily come off, so if your DIY skills won't work - it is better to take the leather jacket and have it done by professionals. The goal to maintaining its overall quality and appearance is what needs to be kept in mind in learning how to clean a leather jacket.
Still, with patience and some effort, you can clean the leather material yourself taking into account the above-mentioned approaches on how to clean that leather jacket. However, there are some tough stains we need to get to know first and also simple ways on how to clean them off.
Sprinkle a small amount of talcum powder on the stained part of your leather jacket. Then, gently rub the powder into the material using your finger for best absorption. Wait for at least 2-3 hours before removing the talcum powder using a soft bristle brush (an old toothbrush will do the trick) or microfiber cloth.
If by any chance you noticed a small ink blot on your leather jacket, let's hope it's not completely dry already (as this would be a bit tougher to clean off). Within minutes of the ink stain staying on your leather jacket, treat the affected part with a leather stain remover asap.
Recommended: Fiebing's Mink Oil Paste, 6 Oz. - For Smooth Leather and Vinyl. This product helps soften, preserve and has a waterproofing effect when applied to smooth leather products. Not only is this Fiebing's product made of high quality ingredients, it also works well with ink stains.
The way we take care of our belongings - quality leather jackets need the same amount of care, too. And achieving this requires special attention and products that have been proven to work their magic by individuals who have experienced similar issues on how to clean a leather jacket.
Sure, there are still other ways to clean any leather jacket. We'll make sure to include them in our posts anytime soon!