The Goods

How to clean leather and suede using items you already have at home

Instead of spending a lot of money on expensive solutions, we're just showing you some easy fabric cleaning hacks using only household products.

Even though they're especially stylish, rocking fabrics like leather and suede can come with a price. Spills and slips can cause scuffs and stains on your favourite clothes, leaving you with a hefty bill from the dry cleaners. So, instead of spending a lot of money on expensive fabric cleaning products, we're just showing you some hacks using products you'll already have at home. 

How to clean patent leather

Water marks and salt stains are easy to remove from patent leather shoes with a little soap and water, but stubborn scuff marks can be trickier. For those, try using hand sanitizer. Just take a cotton swab, dip it in the hand sanitizer and rub it on the scuff mark. You don't even need that much — you'll watch it come right off.

Once you've scrubbed off those scuffs, your fingerprints are probably all over your shoes. So, take some window cleaner and spray the shoe. Then, wipe it with a clean cloth and watch it sparkle and shine!

How to clean simple stains on leather

Here's a great trick to get small marks, stains and sauces out of your leather items, specifically jackets: use baby wipes. They are as safe on leather as they are on a baby's bottom. Just take your baby wipe and start wiping in a circular motion. Don't scrub!

How to clean tough stains on leather

A baby wipe will work on manageable stains, but what about tough stains, like ink from a pen? Try using hairspray. Spray a generous amount on the stain and let it sit for 10-20 seconds. Then, take a clean cloth and rub in a circular motion to clean the stain away. You will need to repeat this process a few more times to get the blemish out completely. If hairspray doesn't work, you can also try applying a bit of rubbing alcohol to a cotton ball or cloth and taking that to the stain.

Regardless of which treatment you use, since you've just put some form of alcohol on your leather, you'll want to condition the spot so that it doesn't crack or wear. To do so, take a small amount of olive oil or coconut oil and gently rub it on the spot you just cleaned. Let it dry and you're good to go!

How to clean suede

Suede is a tricky fabric, since it is easy to get dirty (especially when there's salt on the roads), but often difficult to clean. Take on those salt stains with white vinegar. Simply dip a cloth into a little bit of vinegar and wipe the affected areas. You may have to repeat this process once or twice. 

If your suede shoes get wet, it can create a hardened, nappy texture over time. So, try using a nail file to soften it up! Gently rub the surface with your nail file in the same direction over and over. You'll notice it working right away, but do this softly. If you go too hard, you might rip a hole in the fabric.