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Posted by on Mar 5, 2020 in Tips | Comments Off on How to Clean the Leather Sofa at Home

A leather sofa is a modern piece of furniture that compliments any lounge or sitting room within one’s home. It is convenient and durable – but only with proper regular care. A leather sofa requires careful handling every day – from the correct location in the room to the constant cleaning of the surface from dust. And if spots appear on the leather upholstery, then it’s definitely not worth delaying their removal.

Manufacturers of leather furniture generally recommend covering leather sofas with covers or rugs. But, you must admit, people do not buy such presentable interior item to hide it, but quite the contrary – to show and decorate the room.

Our task, at Pauls Melbourne Cleaning Company, is to teach you how to clean a leather sofa properly yourself, so it may keep its appearance for many years without the need to hide the sofa under the covers.

Basic Recommendations for Caring for a Leather Sofa

The condition and appearance of leather furniture even depend on how you place it in the room.

  • You should not expect that the skin of the sofa to shine if it stands near a heater or fireplace. The surface of the skin will dry and crack, and the colouring pigment will crumble, forming colourless bald spots on the upholstery. The same scenario is possible with insufficient humidity in the room.
  • The proximity of leather furniture to the windows and the direct exposure to sunlight is also not the best arrangement, especially for models with bright upholstery. From the sun, the skin will discolour. And, most likely, the colour will fade unevenly, which means similarity of stains and whitish bald spots will appear on the upholstery.
  • A light leather sofa is better to not have constant contact with dark and coloured pillows – they can stain the leather.
  • Avoid the habit of eating on a leather sofa is not only because of the likelihood of stains from food or drink. Genuine leather is a soft material that is easily torn. And a fork dropped by negligence can plant a spot on the upholstery and breakthrough it. Therefore, our advice is better not to risk expensive furniture and dine at the table.
  • Perhaps the last on our list, but not the last in importance advice. Make it a rule, sitting on the couch, take off your slippers. A leather sofa (especially light) will undoubtedly suffer from black greasy stains from slippers. This is especially true for houses where there are children. The kids run around the house all day and jump up and down on the sofa, rubbing it with their feet…

Above, we have listed the primary features of caring for a leather sofa – they are more likely to be preventive. Now let’s talk about the more practical side – about taking spots out, for we know what is professional cleaning of sofas.

Regular Cleaning of the Leather Sofa

According to Horizon Leathers, a leather sofa with smooth leather, unlike textile upholstery, does not absorb dirt so much. It is enough to wipe it with a damp cloth – and now it is already shining, clean, soft, like new. In fact, the complexity of caring for natural leather is that it is a very porous material, the surface of which is also covered with tiny cracks. It is the pores and cracks that make the leather and give it the charm for which we love this expensive material. But daily, in all these micro-holes, the dust gets clogged, fine rubbish brought down from the floor, food crumbs and so on. All this falls on the upholstery and first scratch its surface and then clogs into the pores. As a result, the colour of the sofa becomes faded and unattractive due to micro-scratches and collected dust.

To avoid such a development of events is simple – you just need to regularly (at least once every 2 weeks), clean the leather sofa from dust. Choose any method that’s convenient!

  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Dry rag
  • Wet cleaning

Vacuum cleaner

This is an elementary and easily accessible way to clean a leather sofa. It is better if there is a brush nozzle in the kit for your vacuum cleaner. It will gently glide the surface of the leather without scratching it. Take a vacuum cleaner on all surfaces of the sofa and pay special attention to all the cavities. The gaps between the armrests and the seat between the seat and the backrest – all must be carefully cleaned. If the sofa is trimmed with a decorative carriage screed – vacuum around each button.

Dry rag

In the absence of a vacuum cleaner, you can use a dry rag, a sponge or a special whisk and just shake off the dust from the sofa. But you need to understand that from such a cleaning you do not remove dust, but only lift it into the air and after a while, it will settle on the furniture surface again. Therefore, this option of care is possible, but almost useless. It is better to carry out wet cleaning.

Wet cleaning

We need here no special tools. A rag and clean water are all you need. It is impossible to water the leather sofa abundantly, so we squeeze the rag well. It should be a little wet – literally so that dust and small debris stick to it. Wipe the sofa thoroughly, again dipping your hand with a rag into all slots to collect dust from everywhere. To give shine to the leather, you can dampen a rag in a weak lemon solution and wipe the sofa with it.

It is useful to complete any cleaning of a leather sofa by rubbing it with cosmetic petroleum jelly. Apply vaseline as thin as over the entire surface and rub well into the skin. It will impregnate it, soften, give a shine. And what is especially nice – for a while it will create a kind of protective barrier that does not allow dirt to pass into the pores and cracks of the leather. So – the sofa will stay clean longer. For these purposes, you can use special tools that are sold in household chemical stores. It can be ointments, sprays and other varieties. We chose cosmetic vaseline, as a proven and most harmless product – without odours and dyes. If you want to try cleaning products from the store – the main thing is to carefully read the instructions and strictly follow it.

Removing Stains from a Leather Sofa

There is no universal recipe – each spot requires its own approach. Let’s consider what improvised means can be used to clean certain stains on the upholstery of leather furniture. One rule is common – check each of the described means in an inconspicuous place on the sofa!

  • Traces of a pen or felt-tip pen
  • Wine stains
  • Chewing gum
  • Bloodstains

Traces of a pen or felt-tip pen

Ink marks are the most common upholstery dirt. Usually, they end with a desire to work, sitting comfortably on the couch, children’s art and a love of solving crosswords. However, ink and traces of felt-tip pens can be cleaned on your own if you quickly start cleaning. Usually, to remove such stains, it is enough to moisten the cotton pad with pure medical alcohol and gently wipe off the dirt.

Wine stains

Fresh wine stains are fairly easy to remove from leather upholstery. Sometimes it’s enough to wipe the place where the wine was spilled with a clean, damp cloth. If small pink stains remain from red wine, rub them with lemon juice or a weak solution of vinegar. With almost one hundred percent probability, there will be no trace of wine.


Similarly to wine marks, acting quickly, you can easily wipe away blood stains from a leather sofa. Fresh blood stains can be cleaned quickly with a mild soapy solution. You can clean dry stains with vinegar and lemon.

Chewing gum

With leather upholstery, the chewing gum does not have such a grip as with fabric materials. Therefore, cleaning it on a leather sofa is very simple. You can gently pry the chewing gum with a non-sharp object, for example, with a spoon and scrape it without harm to the skin. And if the gum does not wipe away – first freeze it by applying something icy. From the cold, the chewing gum will become woody and easily move away from the leather.