How to care for leather furniture

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How to care for leather furniture

Leather furniture looks beautiful, but in return it can be expensive. So to protect your investment you’ll want to make sure to take good care of your leather furniture. There are a lot of dos and don’ts of leather furniture care, so the help you out, here are some of the most critical tips on How to Care for Leather Furniture

I have a leather recliner that my husband had before we got married. It is over 20 years old and still going strong. It is comfy, broken in and his favorite place to sit. With these tips your leather furniture can last a very long time.

How to Care for Leather Furniture

Manage Temperatures

One of the more nit-picky things you need to learn about how to care for leather furniture is this- leather is sensitive to heat and cold. So don’t put your leather armchair next to your fireplace, and don’t place a leather couch next to a window air conditioner. Very high or very low temperatures can cause the leather to dry out.

Say No to Soap

On most surfaces, if there was a spill or stain, you could use soap to clean it up. This is not true with leather furniture. Soap (even very mild soap) will actually dry out your leather over time, making it weak and easily damaged, and possibly removing some of the leather’s color.

Avoid Oil

When trying to care for leather furniture you’ll also want to avoid oils and oil-based soaps. Oil stains leather, turning the color darker. This happens because the oil soaks deep into the leather, then eventually comes back up to the surface in the form of dark spots.

Stay in the Shade

When caring for leather furniture it’s important to remember that leather is really just treated dead animal hide. As a result, it can dry out easily under direct sunlight, as any skin would if not moisturized and not on a living creature. For this reason, you’ll want to keep your leather furniture away from windows or doors that open often.

Keep Dust and Dirt Free

Leather furniture also needs to be wiped down regularly with a dry cloth. This prevents dust from building up and potentially getting lodged in any cracks on the leather. You can also use the hose of your vacuum to get dirt and debris out of any crevices.

Use Leather Conditioner

This is a very important part of how you care for leather furniture in your home! Leather conditioner is made to be buffed into your leather to keep it supple (and thus prevent cracks). You should use it once or twice a year. You may see some recipes online for homemade leather conditioners with an olive oil base. While these may seem to work in the short term, in the long term they’ll actually damage your leather (because oil stains leather, as mentioned above).

Avoid Liquids

Unless you’re conditioning your leather, you should try to avoid getting any sort of moisture on your leather furniture. So if something spills, you need to clean it up ASAP. Use a dry cloth to mop up the spill. If the spill is something sticky that requires water to clean it up, just use a lightly moistened cloth, and make sure to thoroughly dry the area afterwards.

Heal Scratches

If your leather develops small scratches or cracks, you can usually fix them to retain the pristine look of your furniture. Just get a microfiber cloth, and buff at the scratches until they’re gone. Use a light touch- you don’t want to make them worse!

Retain Color

Over time, despite your best efforts, it’s possible that your leather furniture will fade. That doesn’t mean it’s ruined forever! All you need to do is get a leather dye kit that matches the color of your leather furniture. It can take some time, and a couple of coats, but dye does work to return faded leather to its original glory. If you apply a leather preserver (AKA leather protector) after the dye is dried, you may be able to retain your furniture’s color for longer.

While it may not be easy to care for leather furniture (especially in a house with kids or pets) if you use these tips, your furniture will last a long time and keep looking great!

Have you owned leather furniture before? Did it age well?

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