How to Restore a Leather Handbag

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How to Restore a Leather Handbag

Any lady can feel beautiful with a stylish, leather handbag at her side. They let women carry their necessities fashionably and comfortably. However in order to keep the handbag in good condition, owners must maintain their leather. Learning how to restore a leather handbag is a great way to keep one's purse longer. With the ability to restore their own handbags, shoppers can purchase inexpensive, used, designer bags and bring them back to life.

Clean and Buff the Leather Handbag

Cleaning the leather before restoring it is important, but remember to never get leather wet. Owners can wipe their bags down with a damp rag and then use a leather cleaner to scrub off dirt and any other buildup.

Supplies to Have on Hand


Angelus Dry Cleaner and Spot Remover

To remove stains


To polish hardware

Clean Cloths

For cleaning and polishing

Leather Cleaner

To remove dirt and buildup

Leather Conditioner

To tighten up leather

Mink Oil

To condition and restore leather

Not all of these supplies may be necessary. Read through the instructions and assess which kinds of restoration the leather handbag needs before ordering anything.

Remove Stains

Removing stains from leather is tough because certain cleaners may also remove the colour from the leather. There are several safe methods to use when attacking stains. First, try Angelus Dry Cleaner and Spot Remover. It is very effective and even removes ink. It is safe to use on leather, but try it out on an inconspicuous place first just to be sure. Be sure to close the bottle as soon as possible because the solution evaporates. Another option is to use hair spray. This is a little more challenging since the spray hardens quickly, but it does work. Spray a bit onto the tip of a rag and then scrub the stain. Next, wipe the area clean with a damp rag.

To get rid of water spots, moisten the spot with some water and be careful not to get any other portion of the leather wet. Next, blow dry the spot on a low heat until the leather is no longer wet.

Buff the Leather Handbag

In some cases, dry and lightly cracking leather only needs to be buffed. Using mink oil is one of the most effective ways to condition and moisten the leather while also making it semi-waterproof. Do this two to three times a year to keep the bag in good condition.

Apply the mink oil to a clean cloth and then begin massaging it onto the leather handbag. When done, the entire handbag should look wet. Let it sit for a few hours to absorb the oil and then rub the excess oil off with a dry, clean rag. If the bag does not seem to be absorbing the oil, use a blow dryer to warm up the oil and leather. This should melt the oil into the material. Let the bag sit again for several more hours before handling it.

If the leather appears stretched out with wrinkles, stuff the purse full of cloth or tissue paper and then rub a leather conditioner onto the leather. Afterwards, blow dry the leather. The heat combined with the conditioner should tighten up the leather.

Clean and Buff the Hardware

Some leather handbags have brass or silver hardware on them. Use Cameo, a cleaning agent for metals, to clean and polish the hardware. Place the metal pieces onto a rag and cover up the leather if possible. Rub the paste onto the brass or silver without getting any on the leather. Let the solution sit for a minute or two and then wipe it off. Cameo removes oxidation and shines the hardware. If the silver or brass is in bad condition, owners may have to apply cameo several times.

Remove any Odours

Those purchasing used leather handbags may find that some of them smell musky or like cigarette smoke. Luckily, straight vinegar removes odours. Dap some vinegar onto a clean cloth and then rub it on the inside and outside of the bag. When done, place the bag outside to dry if the weather is nice. If not, put the bag in front of a fan. After the bag is dry, wipe it down with a damp rag or a leather cleaner and then smell it to see if any odour remains. Heavy odours may require several applications of vinegar.

How to Buy Leather Handbags on eBay

Rather than throwing out an aged handbag or skipping over the vintage ones at a shop, consider learning how to restore one on your own. The process is not hard and you can find all of the supplies you need on eBay. Some ladies even purchase designer handbags in rough condition, restore them, and then sell them for a profit. Regardless of how people use it, learning this skill can be valuable. Shop for a used leather handbag on eBay if you do not already have one, and then order the supplies with it. Use the eBay search bar to pull of a list of the products and also check out the eBay Deals page to see if you can catch any sales for the day. To save even more money, look for the sellers that offer free postage and packaging.

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