Last updated on January 29th, 2024 at 01:22 am
Leather jackets are dope. They’re a timeless fashion statement and a versatile (and practical) addition to any wardrobe. But have you ever bought a leather jacket from a thrift store? There’s possible wear and tear, to begin with, and then there are also the suspicious smells and the question of how to clean it properly. Given the right tools and techniques, cleaning a leather jacket from a thrift store can be easy and hassle-free, as you will find in this post. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to clean a leather jacket from a thrift store, so you can enjoy your awesome vintage find properly and for a long time!
BTW, buying secondhand clothing is among the most sustainable moves you can make to reduce your impact on the planet. We recommend buying well-maintained leather jackets from thrift stores – you save it from going to the landfill, and you also get to enjoy the benefits of leather without causing harm by buying a brand new item. This is the better option to buying recycled leather! And once you learn how to care for leather, your thrift store item will last you for several years, if not decades.
So, let’s get into it.
How to Clean Leather Jacket from Thrift Store
1 / Assess the Condition of the Jacket
First things first. Before cleaning your thrift store leather jacket, it’s important to assess its condition. Look for any signs of wear and tear, such as scratches, scuffs, or stains. If the jacket has been poorly cared for, it may be best to take it to a professional cleaner. However, if the jacket is in good condition, you can easily clean it at home.
2 / Gather Your Cleaning Supplies
To clean your thrift store leather jacket, you’ll need a few essential cleaning supplies, including:
- Mild soap or non toxic leather cleaner
- Soft-bristled brush
- Clean, dry cloth
- Non toxic leather conditioner
3 / Spot Clean Stains
If your thrift store leather jacket has any stains, it’s important to spot clean them before proceeding with a full cleaning. Use the soft-bristled brush to gently scrub the stain with the mild soap or leather cleaner. Be sure to test the cleaner on a small, inconspicuous area of the jacket first to make sure it doesn’t damage the leather!
4 / Clean the Jacket
Once you’ve spot cleaned any stains, it’s time to clean the entire jacket. Dampen a clean, dry cloth with water and wring out the excess water. Apply a small amount of mild soap or leather cleaner to the cloth and gently rub it onto the leather in circular motions. Avoid using too much water, as this can damage the leather.
5 / Condition the Leather
After cleaning the jacket, it’s important to condition the leather to keep it soft and supple. Apply a small amount of leather conditioner to a clean, dry cloth and rub it onto the leather in circular motions. Be sure to follow the instructions on the conditioner for best results.
6 / Dry the Jacket
After conditioning the leather, let the jacket air dry in a cool, dry place. Avoid hanging the jacket in direct sunlight or using a heat source to dry it, as, again, this can damage the leather.
7 / Learn to Store it Properly
Once you’ve started using your leather jacket, the next question is proper storage when you don’t need it, like over the summer. Properly storing your leather jacket is an art form – learn how to do it so your jacket lasts for a long time to come!
How to Get Thrift Store Smell Out of Leather
It’s not just jackets, of course. Other leather items from thrift stores sometimes have that distinct thrift store smell. While it’s easy to remove the smell from fabric, leather is a different story. Again, for any leather item obtained from a thrift store, follow these simple steps to get rid of that thrift store smell:
1 / Clean the Leather Thoroughly
Give the leather item a thorough cleaning with a leather cleaner or a simple mixture of warm water and dish soap. Be sure to first test the cleaning solution on a small, inconspicuous area before using it on the whole item.
Once the item is clean and dry, let’s deal with the smell.
2 / Tackle the Smell
Sprinkle baking soda or activated charcoal over the leather surface, then let it sit for several hours or even overnight. Both of these substances are great at absorbing odors. Afterward, use a soft-bristled brush to remove the powder.
If the smell persists, try leaving the item in a well-ventilated area for a few days or even weeks. The smell should eventually dissipate.
3 / Professional Cleaning
If these steps don’t work, then it’s time to take the leather item to a professional cleaner. It’s a good investment for an item that will last you for a long time.
In conclusion, removing the thrift store smell from leather is possible. Just be patient and use a combination of cleaning and odor-absorbing techniques to banish that unpleasant smell. With a little effort, your leather finds can smell as good as new.
FAQs about Thrift Store Leather Items
1 / Can I use a regular detergent to clean my thrift store leather jacket?
A: No, it’s important to use a mild soap or leather cleaner to avoid damaging the leather.
2 / How often should I condition my leather jacket?
A: It’s recommended to condition your leather jacket every six months to keep it soft and supple.
3 / What if my thrift store leather jacket has a strong odor?
A: You can try hanging the jacket outside in a well-ventilated area for a few hours to air it out. If the odor persists, you may need to take it to a professional cleaner.
This post was about cleaning your leather jacket bought from a thrift store
Cleaning a leather jacket that you purchased at a thrift store can seem daunting, but with the right tools and techniques, it can be easy and effective. By following the simple steps outlined above, you can enjoy your vintage leather jacket sans any strange smells!
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