Choose the Right Cleaning Materials

Leather clothing requires specialized cleaning processes and detergents. The cleaning materials should be gentle on the fabric, and preserve its natural lubrication. You can find an assortment of leather detergents from department stores, but it is still important to confirm their working mechanism by doing some research.

When shopping for leather cleaning materials, choose detergents that do not leave behind stains, grease or other residue on the fabric. Such debris can attract bacteria on the natural fabric, leading to tarnishing and breakdown of the meticulous stitching detail. It is therefore important to test the cleaning compound by wiping a small area of the jacket first, checking the results, and then proceeding with the rest of the garment if there is no visible discoloration. Remove excessive cleaner from the retro leather jackets using a slightly dampened cloth or small brush.

Stain Removal

Stains can ruin the appearance of your leather apparel. Some leather stains are easier to remove than others. You can get rid of common grease and oil stains by sprinkling blackboard chalk on the stained area, and leaving it there for a day or two. Other stains such as wine, blood, wax or ink may require specialized removal by professional cleaners.

Removing Mildew

Mildew can form on your vintage leather jackets due to prolonged storage in an airless environment. You can use a mixture of rubbing alcohol and water to clean mildew from leather attire. Simply dip a clean piece of cloth into the mixture and rub gently on the affected areas. If the mildew is persistent in nature, add some mild detergent or germicide to the mixture and wipe using a clean cloth.


Once your retro leather jacket is clean, you should let it dry naturally under shade. Never dry leather outfits using artificial driers to prevent them from losing shape. You can stuff the leather jacket prior to drying, to give it a firm, wrinkle-free appearance afterwards.