September 15, 2018

Introduction to Leather Care and Maintenance

  • by Brice Caleb
  • 2 Months ago
  • Comments Off

Leather continues to be the luxury material of choice even for marine applications as well. However, having a leather heirloom piece or that really expensive premium leather bag you have, maybe it’s that leather dining chair you own but all of them need care and maintenance. Although leather care products have hit the market and are widely available, your first step is to understand the type of product you are using and equally important is the type of leather you possess. Not all leather is the same and nor is all the leather products universal.

Now that out of the way, let’s get into caring for leather. Caring for any type of leather basically needs 3 products a cleaner, conditioner and weatherproofer. Another product to consider is a colour revitalizer to restore the depth of colour depending on the condition of your leather.

Cleaner

The least abrasive cleaners are the best choices when it comes to cleaning leather. If your leather has tough days are outside in play then its best to go for a saddle soap and if not so much it’s best you go for some kind of less abrasive enzyme or chemical compositions that don’t contain any kind of alcohol. In case of a long forgotten dusty piece of leather is always good to start with a damp cloth before the cleaner.

Conditioner

The conditioner is a critical component to long-term protection of your leather goods. Liquid conditioners and oils offer a deep penetrating formula that gives you superior levels of moisturizing for your leather. The better conditioned your leathers are the supplier and soften your leather will be. If using oils its preferable to use mink oil or seed oils, although they tend to be on the higher end of the oils available. Then there are synthetic versions that offer results when the right products are used and it is imperative you scrutinize the ingredients before your purchase. Also, consider binders or waxes when using natural oils as needed for your conditioning.

Color Revitalizer

If you want to recondition the colour of the leather, use a conditioner that has a dye element to it.  Dye will penetrate into the hide and recolour it.  This will allow the leather to absorb another layer of dye without covering the pores on the hide. An important factor to consider before buying a revitalizer will be colour matching the dye used. Using black dye cream on your tan coloured leather will result in a leaving the leather will not be coloured evenly.

Weather Proofing

There are many weatherproof creams for leather that use a variety of sealers.  Pastes are inherently heartier than liquid conditioners. You always want to use the least aggressive sealer as is necessary and weatherproofing use should depend on the circumstances. A better sealer will use a suitable resin which is air permeable and water repellent.  In normal and even rainy conditions, a resin will protect the leather.  Resins allow the leather to breathe even in rain and poor conditions.  Leather needs to breathe and be well ventilated to allow for the transfer of moisture away from the body. Hence Resin leather is one of the best ways to protect your leather products.

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