How to Clean Blood Stains From Leather

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You can clean blood stains from leather.
Image Credit: Svitlana Hulko/iStock/GettyImages

Whether you're talking about a leather jacket, a leather couch or anything else made from leather, it's crucial to remove a bloodstain from the leather promptly and properly with a leather stain remover or home remedy. Unfortunately, blood can be one of the most stubborn stains to remove on any material.

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Test the Leather Stain Remover First

If the bloodstain is new, the most important thing to do is to first remove any excess blood from soaking into the material. Use a cloth made from a highly absorbent material, such as cotton, to absorb the blood. ​Dab​ the stain, soaking up as much as possible. Do not rub the bloodstain! Rubbing will only force more of the blood into the leather. Leather itself is highly absorbent, which complicates the process when it's been stained with any substance.

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A good cleaning solution for leather is hydrogen peroxide, which is especially effective against a bloodstain. However, different types of leather are treated with various chemicals and tanning processes, so you need to test them first. Soak a paper towel's corner in hydrogen peroxide and test the leather in an inconspicuous place. On clothing, look for a spot on the inside of the garment. On furniture, look for a position underneath or near the bottom; you might want to flip over the cushion if it's a couch.

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Dab the peroxide onto the leather. Once it starts to bubble, wipe with a damp paper towel and then dry it with a dry paper towel. Wait five to 10 minutes and check the spot for discoloration or other damage to the leather. If none appears, the hydrogen peroxide is safe to clean the bloodstain.

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Cleaning the Bloodstain

The process for removing the bloodstain is similar to the testing process. Using a paper towel moistened with hydrogen peroxide, dab the stain. Once the stain begins to bubble, wipe with a dry paper towel, wipe with a wet paper towel and then follow those two steps by wiping with another dry paper towel.

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Give it a few minutes to see if this process removed the stain. If not, repeat. Work in small batches, especially if you're trying to remove a large bloodstain. You don't want the hydrogen peroxide to stay on the leather for too long.

Commercial Leather Stain Removers

Alternatively, you can use a commercial leather stain remover or leather cleaning product to remove the bloodstain. The chief benefits are that these stain removers are less likely to damage your leather and are also very effective.

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The downside is that leather stain removers can be expensive, and most people don't have them lying around their homes. Unfortunately, if you're out shopping for leather cleaner or waiting for it to be delivered, your stain will have more time to set.

Even though these products are specifically designed for use on leather, you still want to test an inconspicuous spot before applying widely. As long as the product doesn't stain or damage your leather, follow the manufacturer's instructions.

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