Pesky dust. No matter how hard we try, that omnipresent gremlin is always hanging around ready to swoop and prey. It layers our cabinets, riddles our TVs, and now, it’s got an agenda against your priceless leather sofa (especially the white ones!). We’re not going to have that.
So what’s the best way to clean dust off leather? For all the trouble dust causes us, it’s fortunate it won’t put up much of a fight. For routine layers of dust, a slightly damp, lint-free cloth will suffice. Only make sure the cloth is slightly damp. Water in excess can actually damage leather. Your goal is for the cloth to be damp enough to pick up the dust particles, and not interact too much with the leather itself. Afterwards, you can use a soft, bristle brush to get in the leather’s grains and pull out the stragglers.
If your leather has been neglected for some time, you may need more drastic measures to clean dust off leather. Leather cleaners are an effective tool to pull dirt and debris caught deep in leather’s pores. Veer away from commercial leather cleaners, as these have an incompatible pH that will cause your leather harm. Instead, use a pH balanced recipe specifically designed for use on leather, such as Straight Cleaner no. 2. Gently rub your leather cleaner in a discreet area to test for color rub off, discoloration or any other side effects that may result on your type of leather. If it’s good to go, apply it in thin, even layers. Once the surface is covered, wipe off any residue and leave your leather in a cool, clean area away from sunlight and heat to dry. Remember that it is important to always follow up with leather conditioner any time you use a leather cleaner.
Brave the Dust
Speaking of which, leather conditioner is also an excellent tool to clean dust off leather. Leather conditioners, like Leather Care Liniment no. 1, often have protective qualities that will help shield your leather from absorbing dust in future. While you may temporarily deal with more dust attraction, as the leather conditioner has time to absorb, it will fill into the leather’s pores and prevent dust from working its way in and causing more serious damage. As with leather cleaner, you will always want to test leather conditioners before you use them. If it checks out, use circular motions to rub it evenly and thinly across the leather. Use as much as you feel the leather needs, and give it time to set in your familiar cool, clean location. Afterwards, buff the leather off and enjoy the glow!
Other ways you can protect your leather against dust is to give it protective layers when it’s not being used. Leather bags and purses can be placed in wooden boxes, pillow cases or dust jackets. Do not put leather in plastic, or it will suffocate. It’s important the leather is permitted to breathe (which you can learn more about in our blog “How Does Leather Breathe?”). If you have a leather sofa, try putting blankets over it whenever you aren’t sitting on it. You get the idea.
Off to the Sunset with You
Hopefully this will help you clean dust off leather like a pro. For handy Chamberlain remedies to all your leather problems, please check out our other blogs. Have a swell day, you.
Chris Repp (www.leatherhelp.com)
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