You’ve invested in a stylish leather bag, which you admire and love! As with anything else, time and general elements will want to make their mark and your beloved bag will start the aging process. Certain leather product types just get better with age, but all kinds will give you added years with just a basic level of care.
There are different kinds of leather and different kinds of finish requiring different kinds of specialist care. If the manufacturer of your bag has given instructions then observe and take heed! A few general everyday caring tactics will help to ensure that your cool leather bag remains in top condition.
A good leather conditioner applied every couple of months will go a long way to help on day to day maintenance. Like anything else the best form of attack is defence. Try as much as possible to keep your leather handbag away from direct sunlight, rain, dusty and dirty environments. For when this just can’t be done, follow these simple hacks.
If you get caught in the rain and your bag gets very wet, dry it carefully in a warm dry area, near to (but not on) a radiator. Direct heat contacting the leather bag can cause it to dry excessively, crack, and go stiff. If it is excessively wet, then it is best to empty it and stuff it with something that will help to maintain the shape.
As much as possible, try to keep your leather bag dry. This is not always possible though, so add a treatment of water barrier cream or oil, which can be purchased from supermarkets or leather specialist outlets. Make sure that the said oil is appropriate for the kind of leather that you are treating.
If your vintage leather bag dries out after time just with the natural elements, it may start to feel rough. It can also be a result of being artificially dried too many times. To keep your leather bag in its best condition, it is important to exchange the herbal oils which will have been washed away. A natural colored vintage leather bag may just need a drop of vegetable or rapeseed oil depending on manufacturer’s guidelines.
Other colored and polished bags will require specific leather lotion for the job. Check here and don’t make short cuts, it could permanently stain the leather. Whenever using any kind of cream or oil, try it out of sight first, just to be on the safe side.
With new leather bags sometimes comes that special aroma. It’s part of the rich experience associated with buying real leather. When the production process uses natural oils rather than chemicals the aroma can be a little overwhelming for some. If the novelty should wear off before the scent does then here are a few ideas:
These can be authenticating marks in natural goat leather. Typically they are light scratches on the surface, and are hallmarks that make your bag unique. This adds to the delightful appeal of distressed and vintage leather. However, if you prefer, these can sometimes be reduced just by rubbing it with your finger. Alternatively, a drop of vegetable oil, sunflower oil, baby oil or rapeseed on cotton wool rubbed over the scratch can reduce its appearance (if you really want to!)
On polished or treated leather, a scratch can look very much out of place. Products like boot polish, Vaseline, or saddle soap may treat this. When applying any kind of liquid treatment always work in the direction of the grain, otherwise you could leave it badly marked. Any kind of application can alter the appearance of leather so give it a try in an out of sight area first.
Face cream and balm can also help to remove a scratch. Usually it’s just a case of blending the scratch in with the rest of the leather. Check coloring when using any kind of cream, by trying it out in a hidden area.