How to Get Liquid Soap Off a Leather Jacket

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Liquid hand soap with additives will leave a stain on leather jackets.
Liquid hand soap with additives will leave a stain on leather jackets. (Image: Martin Poole/Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Liquid soap can be used to clean leather jackets if you apply it properly. However, a liquid soap spill, especially if the soap contains perfume or other additives, can set into the leather and appear unsightly. It is easy to remove a fresh liquid soap stain or spill from a leather jacket, and even removing a neglected and set stain is not difficult. Fresh soap stains are best removed with a wet sponge, whereas cleaning the jacket with saddle soap or leather cleaner will remove a set-in soap stain.

Things You'll Need

  • Sponge
  • Clean, dry cloth
  • Saddle soap
  • Leather conditioner

Moisten a soft, clean cloth with water. Blot as much soap as possible from the jacket with the cloth.

Moisten a sponge with water and work any remaining soap into a lather. Rinse the sponge thoroughly with water and remove any traces of soap or suds from the jacket.

Allow the jacket to air-dry away from any sources of artificial heat or direct sunlight. Check the area that you cleaned to see if the spot is still visible after a few hours of drying.

If the stain remains visible, moisten a clean, dry cloth and rub it over the surface of an open can of saddle soap to work up a lather. Rub the cloth over the remaining stain and the surrounding area of your jacket. Moisten another cloth and wipe away the excess lather.

Allow the jacket to air-dry and then buff the area with a soft, clean cloth.

Once the jacket has dried completely, apply a leather conditioner to the entire outer surface of the jacket according to the package directions.

Tips & Warnings

  • If your jacket has a label a warning not to clean it with saddle soap, use the leather cleaner recommended by the manufacturer or a solution of mild, unscented liquid soap and water in place of saddle soap.

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