Leather Furniture Cleaning Tips

Leather upholstery is very popular, but can be extremely difficult to clean. It’s widely available in a vast range of finishes, textures and colours, but unfortunately many people who purchase leather know little about how to care for it. Although some advise that as leather is natural, it cannot be cleaned, we know that this is not true.

If anything is spilt on your leather furniture, act quickly! If you leave a stain for more than a few hours before treating, it could penetrate deeper into the material and it will be much harder to remove.

Don’t be tempted to scrub at the area with anything abrasive or with cleaning solvents, furniture polish, oils, waxes, ammonia based products or general stain removers as these can do more harm than good.

Firstly, you will need to determine the type of leather that you have. We recommend looking at the manufacturers cleaning guidelines, but if you can’t determine what type of leather that you have, there’s a simple test that you can do:

  • Simply select a small patch of the material that’s concealed and apply a drop of water. If the water soaks into the leather, it is unfinished and will be very difficult to clean yourself. If the water forms a bead, the leather is finished and you can delicately begin cleaning.
  • Finished leather is easier to clean than unfinished leather, but you will still need to be careful how you clean it to protect the coating.
  • For protected leather, we recommend applying a small amount of leather cleaner to a soft cloth and gently dabbing at the marked area. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines carefully to avoid causing more damage.

*Remember to dab at a mark instead of rubbing it as this could cause the stain to penetrate deeper into the leather, worsening the mark.

If you can’t remove the stain yourself, you might need to call in the professionals to delicately remove the mark and protect the finish of the leather. If you do damage your leather furniture or you cannot remove a stain, you may need to call in the professionals to re-colour and re-finish the piece, find out more here.