Removing Bad Odor from Leather Goods
Leather is royal and sturdy material which is been in use since centuries for its softness yet supple and rustic feel. However, taking care of the leather items like bags, purse, jackets, shoes and other accessories is quite tedious task. Especially, keeping the leather items odor free is a major challenge. Leather can “soak in” or absorbs various odors like smoke, food, sweat, perfume, mildew etc. as well as may give out stench due to poor treatment while tanning or manufacturing, using of chemicals or degradation due to poor quality of hide used. There are various measures and practices which can be undertaken to avoid such situation. Some major practices that you can follow to keep your leather products odor free and increase their life are:
- Drying the leather: Contact with moisture or keeping in dark damp place is a major reason that most of the time leather products start developing an odor. Dampness can destroy the patina or texture of leather, rendering it to be of no use. To prevent this, dry and air the bag in sunlight or with help of hair dryer. This will help in removing the moisture and will keep the leather in shape. If the leather is wet, absorb all the water using tissue paper and blow it dry to avoid water marks.
- Using Newspaper for packing: Newspapers are best storage material for keeping the leather goods, especially leather shoes, belts, purse and small bags. When not in use, wrap and cover the leather products in newspaper, preferably with silica pouch to absorb any moisture and bad odor. Items like shoes or small bags can be also stored in cardboard boxes to avoid the air and moisture contact. This is a good practice to improve the shelf life and texture of the leather goods.
- Cleaning the product with Leather friendly solutions: Despite all the care taken and precautions maintained, many a times, the leather items or goods tend to develop a pungent stink which may lead to more bad smells. To treat this issue, many cleaners are available but before using one, perform a “spot test” by using dilute quantity on small part of leather good to check if it is causing discoloring or degrading of leather quality. You can also use water-vinegar solution. Spray the product with this solution and wipe it with clean, dry cloth (microfiber or cotton cloth recommended) to avoid stain marks. If the leather is very pungent, dip the item in solution and then dry it well to get rid of bad stench. Don’t use alcohol or strong alkaline based cleaning products as it may cause crackling of leather and may cause it to lose it patina.
- Use Baking soda to remove odor and stain marks: Baking soda is a good option for absorbing bad smell and can be used with some leather types due to its mild nature. Just place baking soda in permeable pouch and place it within leather item so that it can absorb bad odor. You can also sprinkle the baking soda in items like bags, purse and pouch and clean it later. This process can be repeated until the smell is gone or become bearable.
- Using professional products: There are many professional leather care products available in market that can be used for treating bad odor and improving leather life. Products like leather cleaner, conditioner, polish and linseed oil can be used to remove the bad stench from the leather good and improve its texture and shelf life.
You can also get it professionally cleaned if the problem persists in serious level and if you could afford small fee.
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