A leather chair or sofa is an investment. Learn how to clean leather furniture to keep your pieces beautiful for years to come. Leather is not flawless; all premium leathers have some subtle markings. The natural markings do not affect durability. Good-quality leather is a natural, breathable material; it changes over time. Just like skin, leather requires regular care to look its best.
Leather is a porous material but very durable, however there is a tendency to neglect it. Leather is susceptible to contaminants such as dust, dirt, grease, grime, smoke, and other environmental toxins. These toxins can settle on the surface of the leather and possibly damage or discolor it. Poor maintenance can lead to the toxins migrating into the leather pores and can affect the integrity of the leather fibers. This is when leather fibers will begin to deteriorate, losing strength and flexibility, and the leather begins to hardens and crack.
Here are a few special points to consider:
- Keep it at least two feet away from heating vents or radiators, which will dry leather out.
- Protect the upholstery from sun by keeping it away from windows or skylights, which will cause fading.
- Frequent dusting with a dry microfiber cloth or vacuuming with an upholstery attachment is recommended for preventative maintenance.
- To keep wrinkles to a minimum, turn and fluff cushions weekly.
- Never use furniture polish, saddle soap, oils, varnishes, ammonia water, solvents, soaps or dusting agents.
- Never place newspapers or magazines on the upholstery; inks may bleed onto the leather, causing permanent damage.
- Avoid using ink pens, nail polish, nail polish remover or other harmful products near your leather furniture to prevent spills and stains.
- Blot spills immediately with a soft, dry white cloth. To remove a stain, use a white cloth dampened with lukewarm water.
- Do not rub. Allow to air-dry (never hasten the process with a hair dryer). For stubborn stains, such as ink, call a professional leather upholstery cleaner.