April 04, 2023 5 min read
Leather wrinkles and creases can make for a frustrating eyesore on an otherwise fine material. Luckily, these blemishes don’t have to be permanent. With the right methods, you can repair leather shoes, furniture, handbags, and other items.
Aside from making scratches or cracks disappear, some of these methods can even revitalize your leather item, rehydrating it and boosting its flexibility for a long resilient lifespan.
At Andar, we know that proper leather care can make a world of difference.
So follow us through this DIY guide and learn five key methods to whisk away those tired wrinkles in leather goods.
Knowing the type of leather you’re working with is essential to how you approach repairing it. For instance, while certain oils may be useful for healing leather wrinkles in full-grain leather, they may end up putting some ugly stains on your suede shoes and turning their fabric from soft to stiff.
Additionally, if you’re using heat on a PU leather or faux leather product, you might damage the plastics within, melting and morphing the leather and creating more cracks and wrinkles.
The first step to being wrinkle-free is to know your leather! Once you’ve got that down-pat, you’re ready to go. Now let’s dive into some specific, intuitive ways to repair your leather pieces.
One of the best ways to remove wrinkles and creases from full-grain or top-grain leather is to use Leather Cream. These products are often made from natural oils like mink oil, neatsfoot oil, or plant-based alternatives like beeswax or coconut oil. They replenish the natural oils in the leather, rehydrating and softening it while improving elasticity.
Before you get into the weeds with your leather conditioner, prepare your leather pieces with these simple steps:
Once the shoe is clean, it’s ready for the oil. Dab a little bit of oil (about a teaspoon) onto a cotton cloth, and get a nice even coating across the surface with gentle circular motions.
Wipe away any excess oil with a dry cloth or brush, then let it air dry. Your leather purse, shoes, furniture, or jackets will be wrinkle-free and rehydrated.
As we mentioned earlier, leather conditioners and excessive moisture won’t work well with suede shoes, so the spray bottle and conditioner method is out of the window.
Suede is known for its soft, velvety finish, which can be completely ruined by moisture as the material is not water-resistant. Excess water and conditioners can leave nasty stains and cracks on the absorbent suede material.
If you notice creases or wrinkles in your suede, you can carefully and cautiously iron them away. Put your iron on a low to medium heat setting, and place a dry cloth or dish towel between the fabric and the iron to avoid direct contact.
Work slowly and cautiously, constantly moving the iron to avoid burning the fragile, thin suede fabric. It helps to use a flat surface like an ironing board and to only touch the fabric for 15 to 20 seconds at a time.
While it might work for suede, using heat to smooth out wrinkles in full-grain or top-grain leather can be risky. Heat is known to damage these high-quality leathers, with simple appliances like space heaters or radiators causing leather couches to dry out and crack. Even the heat of sunlight can cause your favorite leather jacket’s color to fade.
Put a regular iron on the lowest setting. Then, place a damp cloth between the leather and the hot surface and carefully work away those wrinkles with the iron. It’s essential to use the damp cloth as a buffer to prevent damage while ironing leather.
Once again, the trick is to work in quick, brief movements; be cautious not to let the heat linger too long over one of the wrinkled areas. Patience is key here. Of course, make sure to use a flat surface. Over time, those creases and wrinkles should fade.
While this might not be the perfect method, it’s useful in a pinch and quite easy to do. This hair-dryer method can work for suede fabrics, bonded leathers, full-grain or top-grain leathers, and even faux leathers.
It’s difficult to recommend this method without a heavy dose of caution. All of these fabrics can be damaged by excessive heat, which can melt and miss-shape the plastics in faux leather, tighten or crack full-grain, or ruin the softness in suede.
With that said, if you keep your blow dryer on a low heat setting, consistently move it back and forth, and keep it about ten inches away from the fabric, you should be able to avoid heat damage and tame those wrinkles.
This is a classic method, especially for those frazzled, busy people who need a quick fix on the go. Using steam doesn’t just work for various types of leather but for your regular shirts, pillowcases, and pants as well.
Place your leather clothing on a hanger, and hang it from a shelf, door, or window in your bathroom. You’ll want to avoid overly direct contact with the steam, to prevent damaging the material with moisture.
After that, all you have to do is take a nice, hot shower, letting the steam fill the bathroom. Of course, it helps to check on your leather goods from time to time. Some people with small kitchens have even used the steam from a kettle to iron out some wrinkles on small garments.
As a warning, while steam may work well on your leather garments, that doesn’t mean a steam iron will have the same effect. Direct exposure to hot water can damage most leather products, be they suede, full-grain, or faux leather.
We hope you learned something new from this guide, picking up some intuitive methods to release those pesky wrinkles. It may be cliche to say, but sometimes the best method is to prevent getting wrinkles in the first place.
Wrinkles and creases often form in leather products from the material becoming dried out or exposed to excessive heat. Avoid placing your leather furniture or clothes near heat sources, including too much direct sunlight.
For leather shoes, a shoe tree can help keep the material in shape, preventing it from folding in or sagging.
Lastly, protect all leather from excessive moisture or damp spaces, as these can cause cracks in leather and damage the softness of suede. Keep your leather items in a cool, dry, and dark place when possible.
At Andar, we love helping our customers learn new ways to care for their leather, making it all the more durable and resilient as the years go by. Our wide range of products uses the finest quality, full-grain leather to give you a durable, stylish product like The Addison Backpack.
With proper care, these products can withstand the elements and carry you through many years. That’s why we’re passionate about keeping you informed with our articles and guides.
We’d be more than happy for you to check out our store and see our elegant, crafty leather designs for bags, wallets, cases, and more. Thanks for stopping by!