How to Clean Leather Furniture – Expert Tips

Leather, as a material, is highly popular and widely used in various crafts, including upholstering items for its impressive look and durability. This is the reason intensive care and maintenance are crucial and would go a great mile in improving the quality and appearance of the leather furniture. However, the question remains, how do you clean leather furniture?

Dust and dirt are common criminals that ruin your leather couches, alongside blemishes resulting from oil, wine, makeup, and ink stains. Hence, folks are worried about handling stains and keeping their leather furniture clean.

Undoubtedly, it is tasking to ensure the glaze of the leather fitments of your showpiece at its best, without any damages to its trendy design and style. Now that you are here, have a host of expert tips on how to get your leather furniture cleaned.

deep clean leather sofa

Materials You Needed

Whether your leather furniture is stained or not, it is pretty crucial to make cleaning a part of your maintenance routine. Here are a few materials needed to keep your furniture free of any unwanted spot or stain.

  • Leather cleaner or mild dish soap
  • Water
  • Microfiber cloths
  • Leather conditioner

Stain Exterminators

  • Baking soda
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Vinegar
  • Hydrogen peroxide

How to Clean Leather Furniture

The leather cleaning process, how to clean a leather couch at home, involves more than wiping the leather surface with a cloth, as done with minor spots and spills.

That involves the post-cleaning check for any left-over or unattended area. Thus, spotless and appealing leather fixtures would be your after-cleaning reward. For expert cleaning of your costly and loved furniture, have a tour through the steps on cleaning your leather furnishings.

Step 1: Vacuum Cleaning and Dusting

The first step to deep clean leather sofa and recliners is getting dust, dirt, crumbs out, and a thorough vacuuming would be great. So, vacuum the leather piece and dust it properly to get off any lingering debris around the folds and creases of the furniture.

For detachable cushions, it would be best to remove them and further vacuum beneath these leather pieces. So, get your vacuum cleaner and fix the brush or feather duster attachment.

Once done, gently apply a soft cloth or brush to dust off the debris and wipe the surface with clean leather wipes. Doing so would expedite the cleaning process to end up the cleaning with awesome results.

Step 2: Work on the Spots and Stains

Get a suitable leather couch cleaner and move on to removing spots on your leather furnishings. Apply some cleaning agents onto a microfiber cloth and carefully rub the furniture in small circles.

Some stains may appear harder to get off; you should employ more effective solutions, like some household products for stain removal. So, what household products can you use to clean leather?

  • A mixture of water and baking soda or vinegar can come in handy for cleaning leather items in place of a leather cleaner.
  • Get rid of bloodstains by mixing hydrogen peroxide and water (in equal parts), and gently apply on the affected area using a clean microfiber cloth or soft paper towel.
  • Remove pen marks from your leather fitments using a white eraser sponge or apply some rubbing alcohol on the concerned areas.
  • Applying a mixture of cornstarch can remove grease stains efficiently– gently rub on the greased part and let it sit for a short while before rubbing off with a soft cloth or brush.

Step 3: Dry and Condition the Leather

After a thorough cleaning of your leather pieces, it is best to let them dry appropriately as a crucial after-cleaning task. But, you should know that excessive heat for drying may prove counter-productive as leather may loosen or tear. To keep safe, it would be best to air-dry the leather fittings.

Deep conditioning should follow drying leather fixtures, as this would ensure your leather piece smells fine along with becoming sparkly. To yield the expected result, purchase a proper leather conditioner, and apply it on the leather surface using a soft cloth.

For a lovely sheen, leave the conditioner rubbed on overnight and buff after using a soft brush or cloth.

Expert Tips on Leather Cleaning

Tips and advice from experts in the same field can make your tasking job fun. Here you go:

  • Read the manufacturer’s instructions on leather furniture cleaner and conditioner before use.
  • Apply leather solutions carefully in circular motions and try not to rub in “back and forth motions,” as this may cause wear and tear.
  • Be sure to wipe out grease stains as soon as possible to get them out easily.
  • You can always use cornstarch to eliminate grease stains on leather furniture, as it would absorb the stain like a sponge.
  • Learn how to clean a leather sofa with baking soda mixed with warm water to tackle tough stains.
  • Test for colorfastness by applying the suggested solutions on insignificant parts of the leather piece before using them all over the leather.
  • After cleaning, restore the dazzling sheen by conditioning it, and repeat this process every 6-12 months to improve the appearance of your leather furnishings.
  • Seek the assistance of expert leather reupholsters if you encounter stains that seem challenging to tackle.

How to Clean Leather Furniture


Q: How do I clean my leather sofa?

Using a suitable leather cleaner on your leather sofas would clean it appropriately – kindly apply some cleaner on a piece of cloth and run the leather surface carefully. You can also employ household solutions, like vinegar and some natural oil.

Get equal parts of vinegar and flaxseed oil or lemon oil mixed within a bowl, and dampen a soft cloth with this solution. Wipe the surface of your leather sofa and let it dry for a while before buffing it with a dry cloth.

Q: How do you clean a leather sofa naturally?

You can employ various natural cleaning solutions from your kitchen to clean your leather sofas and couches. One excellent solution is a mixture of vinegar and water; moist a clean cloth with this solution and rub over the surface of your leather fitments in circular motions.

You can add some natural oil to the cleaning mixture mentioned above to leave a radiant look afterward. Cornstarch or baking soda would be great for resilient stains and works well for most upholstery types.

Q: Can you use baby wipes to clean the leather sofa?

Baby wipes the gentle enough for leather surfaces, and as such, you can use them to wipe away dust and other debris from furniture featured with leather. By now, you should know that these wipes are produced to remove recent stains and can work on many surfaces, including carpets, clothing, and sofas.

So, aside from blotting immediate stains on leather furniture, these baby wipes may not appear useful for removing hardened stains.

Q: Can you use washing-up liquid to clean the leather sofa?

If you don’t have a suitable leather cleaner, you can use a washing-up liquid and water mixture to clean your showpiece and furniture dominantly with leather. Get a bowl and mix one part of the washing-up liquid with five parts of warm water.

Cleaning a leather sofa with Fairy liquid mixed with five parts of water (lukewarm) would help eradicate hasher stains from the leather piece. Kindly ensure you apply with a lint-free cloth or soft rag.

Q: Can you use Dawn to clean leather?

Applying a mild dish soap on leather can help you remove stains and clean the items effectively. Hence, you can mix some parts of the Dawn cleaning solution with water and apply them with a paper towel or soft cloth.

However, you should spot test this liquid cleaning agent on a small area of the leather fittings and only apply further if it doesn’t appear harsh.

Q: Can you use antibacterial wipes on leather?

Sanitizing sprays or wipes can leave damaging effects on leather materials, as these solutions are produced with strong alcohol bases and abrasive substances. It is known that alcohol can dehydrate leather, leaving those supple surfaces dry.

Thus, the continuous use of antibacterial wipes on leather items would leave a chalky and dry appearance, which could further cause wear and tears.

Q: How do you clean an antibacterial leather couch?

Start by dampening the couch with leather soap for a while and wiping off using a soft and dry cloth. Instead, you can utilize a solution of vinegar and water in place of the leather cleaner to help sanitize your leather seats.

After cleaning, wipe the leather surface with a dry cloth since excess water can leave some ugly stains. Further, allow the leather piece to air dry and move on to conditioning the sofa. Rub on a good leather conditioner on the item and buff it after drying.

Wrap Up

Leather is one of the durable furnishing materials that can stand several years of use and abuse and is pretty attractive when used for upholstered pieces. However, the lifespan of your leather fittings depends on the extent and frequency of maintenance.

So, it is crucial to learn how to clean leather furniture without causing any damages. The advice and tips, here, would help you clean and condition leather with ease. Despite that, you should consult a professional in the field if the stain, spot, and dirt on your leather furniture make you overwhelmed.

Evina Naomi

Ewofere, Evina Naomi is a biotechnologist and passionate content writer. As a great lover of leather and various leather crafts, she broadly addresses leather-related issues. She is a writer of many excellent articles on leather. With great knowledge and enthusiasm, readers can access researched pieces on various leather types and the best techniques that work on them. Naomi is here to lead you through the journey of choosing excellent leather products and ensure you handle them rightly. So you can embark on your leather sewing and crafting journey with her and have an incredible experience.

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