Genuine leather products are, in many ways, preferable to those made from cheaper, plastic leather imitation. Unlike faked items, the real thing will endure over time, and, if it’s looked after well, will remain resistant to cracking and breaking, and to a variety of minor nicks and scuffs as well. In order to make sure you get the most from your bags, boots, jackets and belts, however, you will need to make sure you treat them correctly. To help you with this, I’ve put together a list of 7 tips to care for your leather accessories.
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Before you can get on with the business of maintaining your leather product, you will need to determine what variety of hide you’re dealing with. If it is smooth to the touch with a sheen on the surface, the item is made from ordinary finished leather. If the surface soft and a little bit velvety, the item is unfinished leather, and if it’s very soft, and even fuzzier it’s suede. You will need to take care, when you are buying leather care products for these last two varieties that you purchase specially designed balms and creams.
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To start with, it’s a good idea to get your leather product as clean as possible. If you are dealing with suede, you will need to get hold of an appropriate cleaning balm, but, while these do exist for use on your ordinary finished leather, you can also simply use warm soapy water and a sponge. Try not to get the item too wet; squeeze out the sponge so that it is damp before you apply it.
3. A Light Touch
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When you are dealing with any leather, but especially if you are working with an unfinished item or with suede, it is very important not to rub too hard on the surface. Leather is a porous material; no matter how smooth and shiny it appears, if you get a close enough look at it you will find that its surface is pitted and uneven. Thus, when you vigorously scrub at it with your cleaning sponge, you are simply further ingraining the stain. Instead, massage the area lightly in circular motions; you should find that the mark will dissipate.