Cleaning Leather

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Cleaning Protected Leather

Approximately 80% of all leather furniture and almost all automobiles will be protected leather.

  1. Protected leather has a pigment coat applied over the surface and is sealed by a finish of polyurethane resins. In fact, as long as the finish is intact, you are cleaning the finish and not the leather itself.
  2. Identify the leather as protected. A fingernail will not scratch the leather to a lighter color. Water does not darken protected leather because it does not soak into it. Colour is consistent from panel to panel.
  3. Pretest by cleaning a side of the cushion which does not show. Once you are assured it is a protected leather, then proceed.
  4. Use a foam bottle to foam Leather Cleaner onto microfiber cloth or horse hair brush. Apply to leather panel and work microfiber cloth in a circular motion. Wipe up foam with terry cloth towel. Repeat as necessary. Position air mover to dry leather that has been cleaned.
  5. Once leather is uniformly clean and dry to the touch, apply Leather Protector with a soft felt cloth. Spread evenly across the leather and let dry naturally.

Protected Leather Cleaning - Helpful Hints 

  1. Make sure that where leather touches leather, it is dry so when Leather Protectorr is applied, the leather will not stick together.
  2. If leather darkens in any area, then the finish may be damaged, and aggressive agitation may remove pigment. 


Aniline Leather Cleaning

  1. An Aniline leather will have a varied hue, will be soft, will scratch readily with a fingernail, will darken when Leather Master Strong Cleaner is applied, and will dry clear after Leather Master Protection Cream has been applied and dried. Stains will often not be totally removed, and the lighter the color, the more they will show. Be sure to look for fading as that happens easily. Evaluate the dryness of the leather, as an extra step is often needed to restore the feel of the leather after cleaning.
  2. Clean an inconspicuous panel of leather, usually the side of the cushion. Spray Leather Master Strong Cleaner onto microfiber cloth. Rub onto the panel of leather in a circular motion. Look at your cloth to see if the color of the leather came off on the cloth. If no color is seen, then proceed with the cleaning (if transfer of color occurs, then more advanced training and procedures may be required). Wipe off dirt with terry cloth towel and dry panel with hair dryer.
  3. Continue cleaning from panel to panel, drying each panel as you go with hair dryer or small air mover. After entire sofa is cleaned, inspect for areas that may need further attention, and re-treat.
  4. Apply Leather Master Protection Cream after furniture is cleaned. Dry each panel with a hair dryer as you protect it.
  5. For dry leather found in your pre-inspection, apply Leather Vital after leather is cleaned, protected and dry to the touch. Let it dry naturally overnight. Leather Vital will revitalize the feel and touch of the leather by returning the leather moisture back into the leather that has been lost over time.

Helpful Hints - Aniline Leather Cleaning

  1. Restorative cleaning may be necessary, due to a collection of oil and food stains, partial fading, ink marks, and a deterioration of the original finish on the leather. Aniline leather does not have a polyurethane finish, but may have either a nitro-cellulose, wax, or micro-pigmented surface, which will need to be restored.  

Nubuck Leather Cleaning

  1. A Nubuck leather will have a varied hue, will be soft and will scratch readily with a fingernail. Complete stain removal may be more difficult on Nubuck. The lighter the color, the more they will show. You need to watch for fading and evaluate the evenness of the nap of the leather. The nap can rub off wherever there is a lot of wear (e.g. end of the seat cushions, arm rests, etc.).
  2. Test for safety and results. Clean an inconspicuous panel of leather - usually the side of the cushion. Wrap Nubuck Cloth around a sponge and rub back and forth on the leather. Look to see if the Nubuck Cloth scratched the leather. You may need to break in a Nubuck Cloth in inconspicuous areas. Use gently on some Nubuck leathers. Apply Leather Master Foam Cleaner to a sponge. Rub foam onto the panel of leather in a circular motion and wipe off dirt with terry cloth towel. Dry panel with hair dryer. Inspect your sponge to see if the color of the leather came off on the sponge. If no color is seen, proceed with the cleaning. Some Nubuck leathers can only be safely cleaned with a Nubuck Cloth.
  3. Reclean entire sofa with a Nubuck Cloth to remove as much soil as possible. Wrap cloth around a sponge.
  4. Apply Nubuck Eco-Protector and dry each section as you go. It is better to apply two light coats than one heavy coat.
  5. After the protector is applied, brush the leather to raise up and even out the nap. You may use a clean dry sponge, a brass velvet brush or a horsehair brush.

Helpful Hints - Nubuck Leather Cleaning

  1. Restorative cleaning may be necessary due to a collection of oil and food stains, partial fading and ink marks.
  2. Nubuck will require more time and product to clean/protect than Aniline and Protected leather. In heavily soiled areas, “like-new” results may be more difficult to achieve. Suggest to the customer more frequent cleaning to avoid the necessity of restorative measures. 


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