Tips For Cleaning Leather Sofas

Your leather furniture is an investment. Chances are, you chose leather over fabric because you want the enduring luxury that comes with it.

So what happens when your child inevitably spills on it or your pet jumps on it with muddy paws?

Thankfully, leather isn’t as porous as fabric so it’s easier to keep your leather furniture looking fresh and new with general maintenance cleaning and upkeep. And when the accidental spills do happen, there are measures you can take to prevent them from turning into permanent stains.

Our helpful guide is meant to help you care for your leather sofa so that it stays looking fresh and new for as long as possible.

Read more about the benefits of leather here.

General Care for Leather Furniture

  1. Regularly perform light vacuuming. Removing food crumbs, dust, and small particles will help to keep your leather cushions in tip-top shape.
  2. Keep it out of the sun. Anything that stays in the sun over time can fade, and it’s no different with leather. Keep it out of direct sunlight to prevent fading.
  3. Consider the color. Lighter colored leathers will require more upkeep, whereas darker colored leathers will generally require less maintenance.
  4. Invest in leather polish. Use a high-quality leather furniture conditioner monthly to give your sofa a satisfying shine and keep the leather soft and supple.
  5. Consider adding furniture protection. Our furniture protection warranty program provides peace of mind and protects your furniture investment, giving you the freedom to enjoy your beautiful leather furniture worry-free from accidents.

How to Clean Leather

  1. Vacuum and dust. Lightly vacuuming first with an attachment or hand-held vacuum will remove debris and food particles. This not only includes the surfaces, but underneath the cushions and in-between any crevices. Running a dusting cloth over surfaces will also pave the way for a clean leather sofa.
  2. Mix a solution. To wipe down your leather sofa, you can either mix a solution of warm water and dish soap or equal parts water and vinegar. Take a soft, clean cloth and dip it into the solution. Be sure to wring it out so it’s damp—not wet—prior to wiping down your furniture.
  3. Be gentle. Using the damp cloth, wipe down your leather sofa. If there are stains you’re trying to remove, gently dab or use small circular motions to tackle them. Avoid rubbing back and forth or using too much force, as this can wear down the leather and diminish the surface.
  4. When you’re tackling grease stains... add baking soda first to the affected spot, leave for a couple of hours, and then blot gently with a soft, dry cloth. Then follow with a clean, damp cloth in your solution of choice.
  5. Don’t forget to dry. Although water can safely be used to wipe down and clean your leather sofa, it’s important to wipe off any excess moisture once you’re finished with a clean, dry cloth since water can weaken the surface of the leather, potentially causing more damage than the stain you started with.
  6. Deep clean. Once you’ve wiped your leather furniture down with a water solution, it’s time to turn your attention to a quality leather cleaner. This further breaks down dirt and stains, making it easier to get your sofa looking like new. It is recommended that you put the cleaner directly onto your clean cloth rather than onto the sofa itself. Follow the recommended instructions on your leather cleaner’s packaging for the best results.
  7. Condition. Once you’ve wiped off any excess from your cleaner, it’s time to condition. Conditioning keeps your leather soft, supple, and in its best condition (no pun intended) for a very long time. Again, apply the recommended amount of conditioner from the package instructions directly onto a clean cloth. Gently buff it in using circular motions, wipe off any excess, and let it fully dry.
Want to learn more about cleaning a fabric sofa instead? Check out our Fabric Sofa Care Guide.