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If you have just purchased a piece of quality APOSTL leather, congratulations! Or maybe you have some older leather items around the house that are looking a little tired? Whether you want to maintain your leather or remove a stain or mark, we have you covered!
Giving your Leather the Care it Deserves
Leather is a strong material and with care will last a lifetime. Despite its durability, leather is susceptible to damage, particularly by liquid. Rain, hot and cold beverages, ink and other substances that we come into contact with regularly can all stain your leather products. Some wear and tear and discolouration is completely normal, but you don’t have to put up with unsightly stains.
As the saying goes ‘the best cure is prevention’ so keep your bag dry when and if you can and protect it from dust by storing it in cloth or plastic bags when not in use. If you’re using your leather item every day, you made need to clean and condition it more often to keep it looking fresh and to prevent it from drying out.
Which Leather Cleaning Product to Use
There are a range of ready-made products out there, but homemade products are often just as affective and much cheaper. To create your own cleaning solution simply add 1-part mild soap (facial soap, baby soap or mild laundry detergent will work) with 8-parts distilled water. You can add a few mls of vinegar to this mixture if you want – good for the most stubborn stains.
Use distilled water over tap water if possible - it is easier on your leather than tap water and will leave less residue. Make sure the soap and water are mixed well and then spray on to a cloth. Do NOT spray the solution directly onto the leather.
How to Clean Your Leather Bag
First and foremost, whether you are washing or conditioning your leather, always test your product on a small, and preferably hidden, patch of leather. If the leather reacts well to the patch test you have the green light! If not, you might want to consider consulting a professional cleaning service.
Removing Surface Dust and Dirt
The first step is to rub down your bag with a clean and dry towel or cloth. This will remove any dust and/or surface dirt.
Blotting Over Rubbing
After removing surface dirt and dust, and using the mixture you have made, gently blot the stain with a damp cloth. Make sure that your cloth is not too wet. Ring it out before you start if it is. If you are working on a large stain, start blotting from the outside and move inwards, this will minimise how much the stain spreads. If working on a smaller stain, just make sure to limit the area you are blotting as much as possible.
Once the stain is out, or less noticeable, wipe down with a clean damp cloth to remove the soap residue. Leave the bag to dry in a warm room but don’t leave it in direct sunlight, this will damage and dry out the leather.
Conditioning Your Leather Bag
Once the leather is dry, recondition with olive oil. Simply apply a small amount of olive oil to a microfibre cloth and rub down the leather making sure to give it a very light but even coating. This will protect your leather and prevent it from drying out. If you don’t want to use olive oil you can condition with beeswax or even the inside of a banana peel. if you do decide to use a banana peel, you may need to rub the bag down with a clean dry cloth afterwards to make sure that no banana residue remains on the leather.
Leather for Life
Take care in the storage and use of your bag, follow these cleaning tips and make sure to recondition your leather goods from time-to-time and you will have a durable and good-looking piece well into the future.