6 Major Causes of Leather Damage

6 Major Causes for Leather Damage

Leather is the epitome of class and sophistication. It is a regal material that oozes style as well as durability. However, no matter how durable the leather is it can succumb to the elements of time and of course neglect. Leather is a material that demands care and protection, one that prefers to sit on a pedestal. If not given the right attention, leather will be filled with cracks, scratches, and scuffs that will diminish its elegance.

However, fear not as a little awareness and care goes a long way. The first step to protecting leather is knowing what damages it. The second step is investing in a top-notch conditioner like Whites Pearl leather conditioner. In this article, we will shed light on elements that facilitate leather damage. So, hold on to your Birkin as we explore the causes of leather damage and try to mitigate them to the best of our ability.  

Types of Leather 

Types of leather

Leather damage depends on the type of leather. There are two types of leather namely natural leather and faux leather. Even though both of these appear to be quite similar at first glance they are quite different from one another and harbor distinct characteristics, especially when it comes to leather damage. Natural leather is premium leather that is derived from animal hides and harbors a unique texture, unparalleled durability, and rich aroma. Being a product of nature, natural leather possesses high resilience and strength that helps it fight against minor leather damage. It can withstand minor wear and tear however is susceptible to drying out, fading, and cracking if it is not properly taken care of. 

Faux leather on the other hand is artificial or synthetic leather. It is manmade and is made up of various materials such as polyvinyl chloride or polyurethane. It is an affordable alternative to natural leather. However, faux leather lacks quality as well as long-term durability. Faux leather is more susceptible to leather damage and lacks the resilience of natural leather. 

Resilience in the face of Leather Damage 

One main difference between the two kinds of leather is the way they respond to leather damage. Due to its organic composition, natural leather is resilient. It can age gracefully, if well taken care of. With time it might suffer from some wear and tear, but these minor imperfections are considered part of its charm. With care and investing in a top-notch leather conditioner, natural leather can be repaired and made brand new. On the other hand, faux leather does not possess the resilience of natural leather and harbors limited capacity to recover from leather damage. 

Even though it can withstand certain types of wear like staining and fading, faux leather is susceptible to cracking peeling. It also deteriorates as time progresses. However, there are products available that can make the minor issues go away. 

But faux leather does not possess the longevity that natural leather does. When it comes to choosing between the two it all falls down to your budget, preferences, and desires for longevity. However, investing in natural leather is better than wasting money on faux leather. 

What Causes Leather Damage?

With proper care, natural leather can age gracefully, provided that you take extra care of it. Even though natural leather is quite durable, it is not immune to everything. Let’s take a look at the factors that can cause leather damage:

1. Leather Damage Due to Sunlight 

Leather Damage due to sunlight

We all love the sun, its soothing warm embrace, and golden hue brings our soul to life, however the same cannot be said for leather. Direct sunlight is the kryptonite of leather and causes it to fade, leaving the leather looking dull and worn out. To prevent sunlight damage, make sure to keep your leather away from the sun. However, some leather products, like leather car seats are exposed to the sun whether we like it or not. However, there is a way to protect it. Use a leather conditioner from a reputable brand and apply it to the leather every 6 months or so to prevent leather damage from the sun.  

In case you have fallen victim to sun leather damage, the only solution that will help revert the damage lies in leather dye. Buy a leather dye of a matching color and apply it to the leather with a clean cloth in gentle circular motions. This will help bring the vibrance and allure of your leather. 

2. Leather Damage Due to Dryness 

Leather damage due to dryness

It is common knowledge that leather craves moisture like a thirsty wanderer craves water. If leather is exposed to a dry environment for a prolonged time, it can result in the leather losing its natural oils, which can cause dryness, and cracks, and can make the leather look dull. To prevent your leather from looking like a cracked heel, regular hydration is key. To hydrate leather first clean it with a damp cloth and then apply a suitable amount of leather conditioner to it. This leather conditioner, like a moisturizer, will chase the dryness away and breathe new life into leather. 

3. Leather Damage from Direct Heat 

Leather damage due to heat

Heat can be a brutal villain to leather. If you place leather items near heat sources like a hair dryer or a radiator, it can result in irreparable leather damage. Excessive heat causes the leather to dry out resulting in cracks and making the leather lose its vibrance. If your leather has been exposed to the peril known as heat, gently clean the damaged area with mild soap and warm water. Let the leather dry. Once it is dry, apply a leather conditioner to it to restore its vibrance and elegance. 

4. Leather Damage due to Neglect

Leather damage due to neglect

Leather is durable, only if you care for it. A well-taken care of leather will last for years, even decades. Make sure to clean and condition leather on a regular basis because failing to do so will result in the accumulation of grime and dust that can cause wear and tear and ultimately result in leather damage. In order to prevent this from happening, make sure not to neglect your leather and develop a routine of cleaning and conditioning it regularly. 

In case you have been neglecting your leather and it’s starting to look like it had just traveled to hell and back, it’s about time that you grab a rag and start cleaning it. Start by wiping the leather with a damp, clean, soft cloth. Once you have removed all the dirt, let the leather dry for 24 hours. After 24 hours take a soft cloth and apply leather conditioner to it in gentle circular strokes. Let the coat dry and apply some more conditioner if needed. If you repeat this routine every 6 months or so, your leather will never look worn out. 

5. Leather Damage due to Scratches and Depp Cracks 

Leather damage due to cracks

Time is a cruel entity that can leave its mark even on the most durable ones. Time manifests itself as cracks and scratches on the smooth surface of leather, making it look dull. Usually, negligence, loss of hydration, and direct leather damage can result in scratches and cracks. To fight these battle scars and turn the tide of time, invest in a leather repair kit.

These kits come with a filler that can be applied to cracks to smooth them out. Once filled, use sandpaper and sand the area lightly in order to achieve a seamless finish. The next step is to apply a matching leather dye to the treated section of the leather and voila! You just fixed your leather. 

6. Leather Damage due to Stains 

Leather damage due to stains

For the lovers of leather, water and oil stains are an absolute nightmare. Unsightly marks on the surface of beloved leather can infuriate anyone. However, there is a way to get rid of them. First, blot the area gently with a clean cloth or a paper towel. Do not rub the stain as it will spread further, just gently dab it. Once most of the oil is absorbed, take some talcum powder and sprinkle it on the stain, cornstarch can also be used. Let it sit overnight and carefully brush the powder off in the morning. Clean the area with a damp cloth and restore your leather to its former glory.

Also Read

Advantages of a Leather Conditioner


About Whites Pearl

Whites Pearl is a Texas based company that specializes in making Natural Leather Conditioner and Sneaker Cleaner from non-toxic and 100% organic ingredients. We also Prioritize our environment that's why our products are packaged using eco-Friendly packaging.

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