Leather jackets have been in fashion for many years. People love their rugged look and the fact that they are durable.
Outerwear made of leather may lose its shine with time because of body oils, sweat, grime, and dust. However, provided you take good care of your outerwear and protect it from these elements, it can last for many years.
Here are five tips you can use to care for your jacket and increase its lifespan.
1. Clean It Well
The number of times you need to clean your leather outerwear depends on how you use it and the environment in which you use it. If you wear it regularly, it may need cleaning once or twice a month.
When cleaning your outerwear, use a gentle and non-toxic detergent. Most leather is completely unsuitable for the washing machine, so before cleaning your jacket, read the instruction label. If the leather is covered in grime, dirt, oils, and grease, it may be best to take it to a dry cleaner or leather expert for professional jacket restoration.
2. Condition the Leather
Your jacket is like your skin; as a matter of fact, it’s made of skin. It needs regular oiling to keep it shiny and “healthy.” That’s what conditioning is all about: replenishing the nutrients to keep it shiny and in good shape.
You can use many leather conditioners on the market for this purpose. Make sure you choose one that is friendly to your jacket type. If you don’t condition your leather regularly, it will look dull and unattractive and be vulnerable to dust and dirt.
3. Protect It From UV Light
The UV light from the sun is your outerwear’s number one enemy. When you expose your jacket to UV light, its vibrant and glossy color will fade, making it look discolored, dirty, and brittle.
Continuous exposure to UV light will also cause the leather to weaken and develop cracks. So, just like conditioning, your leather jacket also needs a UV protector.
Choose a protectant suitable for the specific material of your jacket. If you can’t get a neutral protector, choose one whose pH will balance that of your jacket.
When applying the protector, make sure it covers the entire surface. Apply the protector when the jacket is clean for maximum effect.
If it rains a lot where you live, consider waterproofing your leather. You can do this easily by applying a waterproof solution or wax. Apply the solution evenly on the jacket, then use a soft material to spread it.
Make sure you use appropriate pressure for the solution to adhere to the jacket. Do not apply a thick layer, especially if you have used a conditioner. A very thick layer can reduce your jacket’s breathability.
5. Air Drying
After cleaning, waterproofing, and conditioning your outerwear, the next step is to air dry it. Use towels first to absorb any excess liquid, then place it on a hanger to dry in a cool, shaded spot. Drying it in the sun can expose it to harmful UV rays.
Use a hairdryer on a low setting if you want your jacket to dry faster. As a final note, don’t forget to store it well when not in use. Hang it in a place where it won’t be exposed to moisture or sunlight.
The Bottom Line
Leather jackets are costly, making it impractical to replace them frequently. These tips can help you protect and care for your leather outerwear. Taking care of your leather jacket will increase its lifespan so that it can serve you for many years.
Images from MMSCENE PORTRAITS: Noah by Oleg Borisuk – See the full story here