Leather is a classic and durable material that is both masculine and elegant in design. Made typically out of cowhide, leather comes in a variety of grades to prove its strength, beauty, and durability.
You own many leather accessories, including shoes, belts, bags (and satchels), and even leather clothing. For as durable and natural as leather is, the material will fade, crack, and can even fall apart with time, so take care of your cherished leather accessories by using the following tips for various items.
Wear Leather with Care
Leather is a naturally porous material, allowing even a small water stain to ruin its surface if you don't clean the moisture immediately. If you spill food or a beverage on your leather clothing or shoes, immediately wipe away the stain with a dry cloth or napkin (be careful of lint and other debris), then use the following tips to properly clean your leather pieces when you can.
Clean Leather Appropriately
You should never place leather items in the washing machine and dryer like traditional clothing, even if a leather piece has elements made of other materials as well. You can use a simple cleaning routine for all leather pieces from belts to shoes.
Wipe Down Leather Pieces
All leather items should be wiped down with a dry, clean cotton rag that doesn't produce lint. An eyeglasses cleaning rag is a fine choice.
Clean with a Mild Detergent
Using a small amount of mild, unscented laundry detergent and a damp rag, gently wipe away all stains and debris in a circular motion. Use a damp rag to remove all soapy residue.
Air Dry Leather Items
In a cool, dark place, allow all your leather items to dry completely before conditioning your pieces. Open satchels and leave belts loosened to allow all moisture to evaporate.
Condition with Special Materials
Use a leather conditioner and a clean, dry rag to gently rub conditioning oils into your leather pieces. You should condition leather pieces periodically to preserve the leather items and prevent cracking and discoloration.
You can make your own leather conditioner by combining two parts linseed oil to one part white vinegar, and rub the solution into your shoes, jacket, back, belt, or other leather accessory in a circular motion.
Store Leather Appropriately
Direct sunlight is not good for leather, as it causes the material to crack and fade prematurely. Store all leather clothing, shoes, and accessories in an airtight, dry closet in cool temperatures when not in use. Do not place your leather items near a heat source so you can prevent drying out the material.
You should store leather shoes in particular in a cool, dry place because the footwear is often exposed to sunlight and varying elements during the day. After wearing your leather shoes, wipe them down completely with a clean cloth to remove mud, dust, and other debris, then store your shoes in a shoe closet or even back in their original box.
Leather items are classic in their design and can last for many years with proper care. You can purchase leather cleaning and conditioning supplies at your local outwear store. If your leather pieces are cracking or showing other signs of abuse, have your leather pieces treated by a leather specialist to restore your treasured accessories.
Your leather clothing and accessories supplier will show you how to further care for your leather pieces. With proper care and attention, you can expect your leather accessories to last for many years. Visit Over Under for all your outdoor clothing and accessory needs. Our inventory is proudly created in the USA.