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Leather care: How to clean and maintain your leather seating

Quality leather seating adds a classic, luxurious look to any commercial space.

Cleaning and maintaining leather keeps it looking its very best, which is crucial for commercial spaces like bars, restaurants and hotels. However, periodic maintenance and TLC are essential no matter where your seats are installed, whether that be a care home, office block or educational institution.

So long as it’s well-maintained, leather seating only improves with age. Here’s how to clean and maintain your leather seating.

Remove dirt and dust

First and foremost, regularly dusting and vacuuming your leather seating is crucial to prevent dirt and dust from settling into the leather. Luckily, dirt and dust are easy to remove.

Use a soft brush to dust off surface dirt and a low-powered vacuum to remove any dust or debris from crevices and seams.

Cleaning leather

Leather cleans up pretty well with plain water and a soft cloth, though it’s best to use distilled water to prevent discolouration.

The only exception is when you find a stain, like a wine or ink. In this case, proceed with caution – water can make it worse. Instead, use a specialist leather stain-removing product.

For a deeper clean, use a mild detergent or leather cleaners a maximum of every two to three weeks. Avoid cleaning products that aren’t explicitly designed for leather.

Conditioning leather

Periodical leather conditioning keeps the material soft, supple and flexible.

After cleaning the leather and allowing it to dry, apply conditioner. Leather should be conditioned every 2 to 6 months or so, but there’s no strict schedule.

Apply the conditioner according to the product's directions and allow it to absorb into the leather before buffing away any excess. Choose a condition designed explicitly for upholstery rather than clothing.

Preventing sun damage

In an ideal world, leather seating should also be protected from the sun, as direct sunlight can cause the leather to fade and crack over time.

Of course, sunlight exposure isn’t always avoidable, so if your leather seating is exposed to direct sunlight, consider using a UV protectant to prevent fading.

The same goes for direct heat – take care when positioning leather furniture near hot windows, radiators or fireplaces.

Keep leather safe

If you’re adding cushions, blankets and throws to your leather seating, ensure they’re colour-fast. Otherwise, the dye could rub off onto the leather. This is pretty unlikely, and it won’t show up on darker leather.

In dirt-prone environments, darker leather is ideal as it hides all manner of scuffs, wear and minor fading. But by following these steps, there’s no reason why your leather seating won’t stay in tip-top condition for years.

To discuss new seating for your hospitality venue or commercial space, contact the Craftwood team today. We combine hand tool techniques with years of experience and the latest technology to offer some of the finest leather seating available.