Leather Characteristics and Care

Leather Guide


Leather is a natural skin, even when upholstered on furniture. It has limited elasticity and will soften and relax as you sit in it and with use. All leathers will
stretch and may develop comfort wrinkles, creasing, ripples, or puddling in the seat and back cushions. This is a natural characteristic of genuine leather and is not a defect – it actually will become even more relaxed and loose over time. This does not affect the wear of the leather but does increase the comfort!

Puddling, Wrinkles, Creases

It is important to understand leather characteristics and reactions with use on upholstered furniture. Many issues that are mistaken as defects or damage are actually due to the natural relaxing of leather that occurs with use.


Natural Markings and Blemishes

Leather is a natural product, each piece is unique. Due to this, markings or “natural blemishes” may be visible such as healed scars, fat wrinkles, creases, variations of texture, and color shading. Depending upon the finishing process of the leather will determine how visible it is. These should not be seen as defects, they are actually a sign of genuine leather.


Leather DOs

DUST AND VACUUM LEATHER FURNITURE  -  Regular light cleaning goes a long way in helping your leather furniture last.

CLEAN YOUR LEATHER FURNITURE  -  We recommend using a water-based cleaner or a mild detergent (Dawn or Ivory heavily diluted with distilled water) 3-4 times per year. Dampen a microfiber cloth with the lightly mixed cleaner/detergent and wipe areas of use. Immediately use a clean dry microfiber cloth to remove any moisture and excess cleaner.

ALWAYS SPOT TEST ANY POTENTIAL MAINTENANCE/CLEANING PRODUCT  -  We can’t tell you how your leather furniture is going to react to your favorite brand of cleaner or conditioner so always spot test it. Dab a small amount of the product on the leather in a spot that is normally hidden from view. Let it sit for 5 minutes. Wipe any excess material off and check back in 30 minutes to see if there is any discoloration or deterioration of the top coat.

ALTERNATE YOUR FAVORITE SEAT  -  Sitting on one particular seat most of the time will cause that seat to soften more than the others. For an even wear alternate your choice of seat regularly. This ensures that each seat is broken in and will aid in creating consistency in creasing, wrinkling, and stretching of the leather across the whole seating area.


Protect Your Investment

Leather should be cleaned often. Frequent and gentle cleaning is easier on leather versus less frequent, more aggressive cleaning. Cleaning will remove dust, dirt, and perspiration. We recommend that you first wipe off any dust, paying special attention to those areas where particles will collect, such as the area between the seat and the cushions.

Leather DONTs


PERSPIRATION  -  Body oils and salts are the biggest contributor to color loss and breakdown in the upholstery leather. Therefore, it needs to be removed regularly. Clean your leather regularly, especially where you body touches most frequently. Some medications (including, but not limited to, some chemotherapy, blood pressure and heart medications) may cause stains or discoloration due to residues being excreted in perspiration.

SUNLIGHT & HEAT -  Do not expose leather to direct sunlight or extreme heat. Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight or heat may cause leather to fade as well as dry out and crack.

DAMAGING SUBSTANCES  -  With all types of leather, there are certain things you should avoid spilling or getting in contact with your leather. This varies with different types and finishes, but generally you should not let sun block, hair spray, perfume, nail varnish, or any other liquid with alcohol or or solvent come in contact with your leather. Common problems associated with these include color loss up to and including complete leather disintegration. Salt or chlorine from pools. Rinse and dry off before using your leather furniture. Household cleaners, solvents, or petroleum products, unspecified or non-recommended products, and any products recommended for saddles or footwear.

DO NOT LET SPILLS SET  -  Although leather furniture is harder to stain than fabric upholstery, spills should still be dealt with as soon as possible to prevent discoloration. Blot with a dry microfiber cloth. A wet cloth can be used on some spills if dry blotting is not enough. Greasy or oily stains may need professional attention.

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