Leather is one of the oldest materials our forefathers worked with, and it’s nearly hardcoded into our DNA.
There’s just something about leather that sets it apart from the rest of the pack, from garments to shelters in the ancient world to boots, backpacks, and wallets in our modern one.
Leather goods have a long lifespan. You can’t beat the look and feel of high-quality leather products, which are tough but supple, robust but sumptuous at the same time.
Simultaneously, you want to ensure that you’re doing everything possible to maintain your leather products looking and feeling their finest. With a little elbow grease, some well-chosen goods, and the inside information we highlight below, heirloom-quality things can be passed down from generation to generation!
Leather goods can last a lifetime if cared for properly.
It’s vital to recognize right away that leather is, after all, a material derived from animal skins. If not properly cared for, this material is prone to cracking, drying out, warping and bending, becoming stained or discolored, and really falling apart at the seams. At the same time, with just a little care and attention, you’ll be able to maintain your leather items looking almost new (but with that unique daily wear and tear patina).
Taking care of yourself won’t take up a lot of your time or energy.
You won’t have anything to worry about if you clean, prep, and care for your leather products in a wise, systematic, and strategic manner. You’ll have no issue passing down a set of leather driving gloves, a leather wallet or briefcase, or a pair of leather shoes, together with instructions on how to care for them to future generations.
The obvious: prevent damage with a cream or ointment.
Most people recognize the importance of keeping leather soft and supple, yet many utilize solutions that claim to extend the life of your leather goods while also breaking it down with each application.
The majority of chemical polishes on the market now should be avoided. They nearly usually contain additives that destroy the natural fibers of the leather, degrade the processes used to tan the leather in the first place, and occasionally produce moisture barriers that prohibit future applications of excellent leather conditioners, lotions, and oils from working at all.
Vegetable oil should never be used on the leather since its chemical makeup begins to eat away and break down leather practically immediately after application. You’ll have a mess on your hands sooner or later, and it’s one of those natural solutions you don’t want to scrub into your leather.
Preserve The Dry And Moisture-Free Condition Of Leather Items
Leather requires the ability to “breathe,” so do everything you can to keep your leather goods dry, moisture-free, and exposed to as much air as possible.
Air may move through leather items naturally, leaving moisture behind that can evaporate naturally while softening the leather and preventing it from drying out.
Sealing your leather products is the worst thing you can do (like in a plastic bag, for example). You’ll wind up choking the leather, drying it out more faster than you ever imagined, and aging it prematurely all at the same time.
Of course, you don’t want to allow your leather goods to become completely saturated. The leather will be flooded with moisture, causing it to expand. If the leather dries out too quickly, it will shrink dramatically, damaging your leather goods in the process.
To remove muck and grime, use a wire or suede brush, something developed specifically for leather products that won’t damage or scratch the surface but remove dirt and debris without soaking the leather itself.
Do not lay them down, but set them up.
Leather, unlike synthetic materials, has a terrible propensity of sticking to whatever shape it’s twisted into for an extended period.
For example, you may toss a synthetic fabric wallet into your back pocket for years and years, and it will never come out of shape, regardless of what you put in it – but the opposite is true if you do the same with a genuine leather wallet.
As a result, it’s critical to ensure that you stand them up rather than laying them on their sides on the ground if you have leather bags.
Choose Full Grain Leather Gear
If you truly want to ensure that your leather goods last as long as possible, invest in leather products produced from full-grain leather.
There are numerous leather types available on the market today, ranging from bonded leather and split leather to full grain and top grain – and a plethora of others in between.
Full-grain leather is the best quality option available, making it more expensive than the other options and providing it durability and quality that none of the other leather options have.