Nov 24, 2010

Leather Clothing and Goods Cleaners

Natural Leather Cleaners

Leather clothing and goods are durable and valuable items that may be ruined when cleaned improperly. Use natural cleaners to clean this natural fabric. Do this at least twice a year to avoid excessive accumulation of dirt and stains. Many household formulas enable natural cleaning of leather without any use of dangerous or artificial chemicals.
Lemon Juice
 Juice from lemons works great for black or tan leather shoes. Do not use an excessive amount of the juice during cleaning and be sure to buff the shoe with a soft cloth right after cleaning.
 Vinegar helps remove water stains from leather. Rub the stained area with a cloth dipped in a solution of vinegar diluted with water. Keep in mind that vinegar may get rid of the stain but it doesn't smell very nice. You may want to add a fragrant oil or herb to the solution to disguise the odor.
Petroleum Jelly
 Leather may dry out and crack during cold or hot weather. A dab of petroleum jelly rubbed into leather will moisturize the material to keep this from happening. However, petroleum jelly may not be a good cleaner for baseball gloves, as it leaves a dirt/dust-catching residue. It also may create conditions that encourage the growth of harmful molds and mildew.
Banana Peels
 Leather shoes can be polished and buffed with the inside of a banana peel. Bear in mind, however, that banana oil will not work as an effective cleaner, though its fragrance may be a good deodorant.
Saddle Soap and Oil
Saddle soap is a mild soap with softening ingredients such as glycerin. It also contains beeswax, which protects leather. As its name implies, the soap is used to clean leather horse saddles. After rinsing off the saddle soap, clean the leather with saddle oil. One vendor ("Bee Natural") sells saddle oil that will kill fungi and bacteria that are harmful to horses such as Streptococcus equi.
Mink Oil
 Mink oil consists of the layer of subcutaneous fat minks have under their fur. It is good for softening and waterproofing top grain leather such as boots or shoes. The only drawback is that it carries a strong odor, so you may want to use a fragrant oil to mask the scent.