Home Decor: How to Clean a Leather Sofa

Cleaning a leather sofa can be a quick and easy task with these simple steps below. Make this a part of your cleaning routine at least once a month to help your sofa looking and keeping clean.

Remove the cushions – dismantle the sofa as much as possible so that you can get into all of the recesses of the sofa easily. Use the soft-brush attachment of your vacuum cleaner to clean the surface dirt and dust. The brush will prevent the leather from becoming scratched. To get into the gaps, use a long thin attachment. I have the Dyson cyclone v10 animal cordless vacuum which is so much easier than using a corded vacuum.

Dyson vacuum attachments
Dyson vacuum attachments
Left: extendable soft brush
Right: long/thin
Dyson cyclone v10 animal cordless vacuum cleaner
Dyson cyclone v10 animal cordless vacuum cleaner

Mix together some cold tap water with equal parts white vinegar. Dip a microfibre cloth into the solution, and wring it well to ensure that the cloth is damp not wet. Have something ready to dry the leather as leaving it wet could result in watermarks. I used some Plenty kitchen towels as they’re super absorbent and don’t tear when using them roughly, but you could use a tea towel or hand towel or a spare microfibre cloth.

I would wear cleaning gloves when doing this, in case you have a paper cut as that would really sting! Plus, last time I did this, I forgot to put gloves on, and my hands smelt faintly of vinegar for over an hour afterwards even after washing.

Clean small sections at a time, and dry them immediately. Keep going until you have cleaned the whole sofa. At the end you will have a faint vinegar smell which will evaporate very quickly in a well aired room. I would recommend spraying some Febreze into any non-leather fabric to help make it smell nicer more quickly – but be careful not to spray this directly onto the leather.

Before doing this, first check your sofa label to see if there are any restrictions on what you can use. If it indicates that you should only use professional services, then I would at least get someone to come and look at the sofa to give you some expert advice.

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