One of the best things you can use to keep your leather bag, handbag or briefcase clean is to use a little umph when buffing it out. There are lots of things on the market designed to clean, shine, brighten, polish and all around transform your leather item but its not necessary to spend an arm and a leg for a special cream. In fact, many leather craftsmen (and women) will caution you about using them. Why? Because high quality leather is a considered a living breathing element to those in the sector, and when you start slathering chemical potions to “protect” and “clean,” you are in effect blocking the natural defense system that the leather has to protect itself. When buffing out a small scratch or mark in the leather, the quality control department at Pierotucci Leather Factory apply simple, home remedies to bring the life and luster back to their bags.
One of the most common remedy is a neutral body cream. Note, this cream should be without color and without a perfume scent. Just a little dab on an area that is dirty. Then use a soft, clean cloth (again look for neutral colors so that there is no color transfer) and a little bit of that elbow to rub out the mark. REMEMBER to always try the cream out on a small piece of hidden leather to be sure that it will not leave a mark or is too aggressive and takes the color off. This is especially important when you are unsure of the quality or origin of the leather. Another alternative is a simple white rubber eraser – exactly! just like the ones you used to buy along with all the other back to school goodies. This is particularrly useful on light colored leathers on the edges where the leather handbag or leather briefcase will get much wear and tear. Use the eraser to gently rub out the mark. The eraser is also fantastic for removing “sticky” stuff like gum. Again, you should always do a test job on a piece of interior or hidden leather to see that your bag doesn’t react negatively. In our quality control department, our department manager perfers to use the eraser as opposed to the cream when cleaning the folds or borders on wallets and handbags, she saids she feels as if she has more control on cleaning small marks and heavily worn areas.
Another alternative, especially useful for the darker colors, is a small dab of shoe polish. This is most appropriate with standard colors such as black, dark or light brown and even blue. – AGAIN, always test the color on a small piece of interior leather before applying to the bag. So before storing the briefcase or handbag in the protective storage cloth you will gently wipe the bag with a damp (not excessively wet) cloth, let it dry thoroughly and then examine for marks, scuffs, scratches or excessive dirt. Apply just a dab of the color to a dry cloth and rub into the bag. The Pierotucci quality control department advises that this process does not make the scratch or scuff go away, but it will help to make it a bit more “invisible”.
As you can see, even a company like Pierotucci Italian Leather Factory, who has been in business for over 30 years has found that many times its the small home remedies plus a little bit of elbow grease that make your bag come to life again. Though not all marks, scratches and spots are removeable it is possible to keep your bag in tip top shape by adhering to some simple, easy to follow rules and by keeping just a few simple items in the house. Two pieces of soft cloth – when to wet and wipe and one to buff (we have even found that a polishing glove is a handy thing to have), a little bit of neutral body cream, shoe polish, a soft bristle buffing brush, a white or transparent rubber eraser, a protective storage bag and tissue paper.
Keep your bag look like brand new.