Key Tips to Make your Leather Products Last
Buying leather products is an investment, and we want to make sure you get the most out of your purchase. Whether you already have one of our products or are looking forward to one as a Christmas gift, here are four key principles to help you keep your leather strong and beautiful.
1. Occasionally wipe down with a damp (not wet) cloth
Leather naturally accumulates dust, debris, and dirt that can be abrasive to the surface of the leather. Wipe down your leather weekly (if you have the discipline!), to keep your leather clean and shiny while also preventing premature aging.
2. Don’t overstuff
You can avoid your leather stretching by not loading it down with too much stuff. Wild & Free Supply uses the thickest possible hide so you can carry all your gear, but it’s a good principle to keep in mind. Semi-annual treatment will help your leather maintain its elasticity and spring back from stretching (see point 4).
3. Keep in the shade
Leather likes to be kept out of the sun. With long sun exposure, leather dries out and is more prone to stretching, cracking, and overall dullness. Help your leather stay hydrated and happy by keeping it in the shade.
If your leather does get dried out from the sun, there’s a quick solution. Set your leather out in the sun for 15 minutes to warm up (sounds counterintuitive, but stay with me), then use a cloth to rub beeswax into the surface. The warmth will help the wax set quickly. We use Atscko Sno-Seal on our leather, which you can find on Amazon here.
4. Clean and treat leather once or twice a year.
There are so many leather treatments and methods and preferences for cleaning and treating leather out there, some from leather companies, some from hardware stores. The best thing you can do is research, find out what works for your particular product and preferred aesthetic. Don’t be wooed by snazzy packaging! Sometimes the best treatments are those with a long history and a low profile.
Types of leather treatments:
- Polish for shine
- Condition for hydration
- Wax for waterproofing
- Clean with damp cloth
- Comb through (suede only)
If you like your leather looking beaten-up and well-traveled, go ahead and ignore this post. We made our leather gear to last no matter what!