How to Look After Your Leather Bags

The tips and tricks to keep your leather items looking brand new!

There is nothing like the fresh smell of new leather. Here at Makiri, we take pride in supplying beautiful leather products to our NZ clients from all around the world - and want them to last a lifetime. Leather is amazing because it can last for so long, provided it is taken care of properly. This guide can apply to leather handbags, wallets, bags and even jackets you may own - but always heed the particular care instructions that come with your leather products, if they are provided, before trying any of these home remedies!

Tips for everyday care for your leather valuables

  • General Cleaning

  • Give your leather items that get a lot of use some TLC every week. Wipe away any dust, spots or other marks weekly with a brush or soft cloth to keep your leather bags and wallets in good nick. 

  • Keeping Leather In Shape

  • Avoid overfilling your leather bags so that they keep their original shape. Leather is a skin, and like any skin, it can stretch when put under duress. Stuffing them full past capacity will most likely cause them to expand and change their shape slightly. 

  • Wash Those Hands

  • Handle your leather with clean hands - leather is susceptible to absorbing oil, grease and other things that can live on dirty skin. 

  • Yearly Treatments

  • Ideally, more than once a year, wipe down your leather bags with a cleaner specifically designed to treat leather. This specialist care is essential to keep leather looking its best. Additionally, use a leather conditioner with a soft cloth over your bag or wallet to stop the leather from drying out. Depending where in NZ you live, you may need to use leather conditioner more or less to keep your bags supple and soft because of the vastly different climates we experience across the country. You can apply this kind of product to your bag up to once a month if required, but should be done at least twice a year. 

  • Keeping Dry

  • Avoid getting your leather bags wet. During the winter, we understand this is a fairly tricky feat, even when using an umbrella (sideways rain, anyone?)
    ipe down excess moisture off of your leather bags as soon as possible if you get caught in the rain or there is a spill of some sort on them. We recommend using a leather conditioner on the bags regularly if they are getting wet often. 

  • Avoid Scratches

  • Nothing makes new leather look more scruffy than unsightly scratches. Remember that leather can scratch fairly easily, so avoid wearing chunky or sharp jewellery when using your leather bag, keep clear of swinging keys, sharp surfaces or embellished clothing. Your bag will thank you for it! 

  • Storing Leather Tips

  • Store your leather bags in a well-ventilated place out of direct sunlight to avoid fading. Also be sure to keep them away from artificial sources of heat like radiators to avoid the leather from drying out, which can lead to cracking. If you are leaving them in storage for a long time, try stuffing them with plain paper (not newspaper as it will smudge onto your bag) or bubble wrap to retain their shape. Air them once every two weeks to avoid any mould or dampness. Store them inside a plain cotton pillowcase, or if it came with an original dust bag, that would be the ideal cover to maintain your bags so they are fresh for the next season. 

  • Avoid Alcohol

  • Getting on your leather bag, that is! Avoid bag cleaners that contain alcohol like the plague, as you will run the high risk of drying out, damaging and discolouring real leather. Only use cleaners that are alcohol-free and designed for real leather. 

    There we have it. Some easy, general tips for taking great care of your leather treasures. When you buy a beautiful bag or wallet, you want to know it’s going to last you more than one season. We don’t believe in fast fashion, so keep your items well looked after so that they last, and last.

    Makiri is a fashion-forward supplier of luxury items founded and operated in New Zealand in the 1920s. Offering a comprehensive range of bags, wallets, purses and accessories suitable for all occasions from worldwide designers, Makiri couples new trends with easy functionality for items we know our customers will love. Find your next bag or wallet with us here