How to Take Care of a Leather Coat

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Taking care of a leather coat will help make sure you can still wear that coat for years to come. Find out how to take care of a leather coat with help from a leather and vinyl professional in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Leather Care
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Video Transcript

Hi, this is Aubrey from the Leather and Vinyl Doctor in Utah. We're here talking about cleaning a leather coat. Now, with a leather coat, as with cleaning any type of leather, you wanna make sure that you have identified what sort of leather you've got, so that you're not using a harsh chemicals or harsh products on something that's fairly sensitive. Now the best way to do that is to test, use a water test where you place a few drops of water on the surface of the leather, and you see how quickly, and whether it actually absorbs into the leather. Now, in my case here, I'm finding this, I am having a little bit of penetration, but for the most part, my water is actually beading up and sitting on the surface. It tells me that my leather is fairly durable, can handle most kind of cleaners. If you find that the water is absorbing very quickly, you wanna make sure that the type of cleaner you have is compatible with an aniline or a semi-aniline type of leather. The issue is the cleaners can leave residual streaks or various water marks in the leather if it's a aniline or semi-aniline, so just be cautious of that. Always test it in an inconspicuous spot to make sure that no color's coming off because of the leather itself, or because of the cleaner that you're using. In this case we're going to make sure that we use a water-based, pH-neutral leather cleaner. This is a specially formulated leather cleaner that we're using for that purpose, but there are many on the market. So, if it comes down to it, and all you have is just a hand soap, just go ahead and use that with a few drops into a small bowl of water. Now, I'm going to use this cleaner, I'm gonna actually squirt it onto a rag. I find that that's a lot more control over cleaning, as opposed to spraying the whole thing and finding the streak marks. And I'm gonna just sort of pick a section, a panel at a time, and just work with that. Now you might find, if it's not heavily soiled, that the dirt's coming off readily easily, without using a great deal of pressure. If you find that some of the stains are there, you can just go ahead and use a bit more elbow grease. If you find that they're actually sticking, the stains are really stuck in there, go ahead and apply either directly to the leather, or on the cloth to that area, put the cleaner on there, and then go ahead and use your soft brush and just work that area. You might have to apply a little bit of, a little bit of cleaner, just to kind of help loosen things up, but you'll find that with a brush you can do wonders. You can really get a lot of dirt out. Again, clean that up, clean up the dirt at the same time. As you work through the jacket, paying special attention to the color mark around the neck, the cuff marks, accumulations of sweat and oil, one of the worst things for leather, it really breaks it down, so pay extra attention to those areas. Finish it off with a good, in this case, a lanolin-based conditioner, something that's gonna, again, be pH-neutral. It's not gonna leave any residual or residue of silicones and things of that nature. Apply it on a damp cloth in circular motions, really help it to penetrate by using a bit of elbow grease in there, but not too much. Let it soak into the leather. Apply it maybe a couple of times if need be, if you find that the leather is a little bit stiff or a little bit old. And once you've done that, you'll have your jacket looking terrific, and it will be preserving the quality of your jacket and the life of your jacket for many years. So that's how you clean a leather coat.

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