How to Clean Faux Leather

We know the level of love you have for your faux leather jacket, and why wouldn’t you? You look great in it. So you probably want to give it the best care possible and to do that, you first need to understand how to clean faux leather. Well, you are in luck because that is precisely what this post is all about. We’ll share tips and tricks and specific steps you need to take to clean your faux leather items effectively.

So let’s cut to the chance, as a faux leather owner, whether because it is cheaper or you’re an animal rights advocate, you must know that your faux leather will get dirty at some point and cleaning is required, but, how do you come about it you ask! Do not panic. We are happy to tell you that it is a lot easier than you may think.

Your faux leather-priced possessions may be designed to impress, but these pieces are pretty low maintenance when it comes to proper care as they can be treated at home without having to invest in dry cleaning services. Now, the right cleaning steps can assure the longevity of your faux leather, so grab pen and paper and learn how to clean faux leather below.

Faux leather FAQ’s

What is faux leather made of?

Most faux leather is made from plastic or vinyl; this is good because cleaning means that it can be washed at home using primarily soap and water. Even those garments that are lined can be cleaned at home.

How to clean faux leather

Following these few simple steps, there is no reason to believe you won’t succeed in this inevitable task.

What you’ll need:

Microfiber cloth
Washing machine or large sink for hand-washing
Pressing cloth
Soft cloth
Cotton swab
Warm water
Gentle detergent
Baby, olive, or coconut oil
Isopropyl alcohol
Baking soda


Search for stains

The vast majority of stains can be wiped out by using a wet microfiber cloth; it is best if you use warm water. For stubborn stains, you may want to try adding a small amount of gentle detergent to the cloth and gently scrub the stain.

How to Clean Faux Leather by Hand wash or machine wash

For most faux leather garments, it is ok to be hand-washed or machine-washed. It comes down to reading specific labels. If you choose to machine wash, you should make sure to employ the right settings such as water temperature, detergent, and gentle agitation.
For better protection, you can place the garment in a mesh laundry bag and reduce the final spin cycle; this will greatly reduce wrinkling.

Never use hot water

What you want to do, whether your hand or machine washing is, set the washer or fill the sink with cool to warm water. Avoid hot water at all costs, as your faux leather may end in tragedy.

Select a gentle detergent

When washing faux leather, you should pick a light or mild detergent. In handwashing, do not apply it directly and instead add the detergent to the water, then proceed to swish to distribute it evenly.

Turn your clothing inside out.

Due to the oils of our bodies, it is most likely that your faux leather garment is a lot dirtier on the inside than on the outside, so make sure you do not neglect this area. The reason why faux leather should always be washed inside out no matter if it’s hand wash or machine washed.

Gentle agitation

If hand-washing, swish the garment through the water, making sure you squeeze gently. Allow it to soak for five minutes. Then, choose the delicate cycle in the washer and reduce the spin speed for the final cycle.

Don’t skip the cool water rinse

Rinse all hand-washed garments in cool water until no suds can be seen, and always use a cold water rinse in the washer. You want to avoid detergent left on the faux leather, resulting in stiffening and cracked faux leather.

Faux leather should be air-dried

Hang jackets inside out on a sturdy hanger, and allow them to drip-dry. Faux leather skirts and pants can either be hung or dried flat on absorbent towels. Drying can take up to 24 hours. Frequently turn items that are dried flat.

Oil to condition

Once your faux leather garment is dry, use a tiny amount of baby, olive, or coconut oil on a soft cloth to condition the faux leather. This will keep the faux leather supple, prevent cracking and peeling, and help remove wrinkles.

Handling wrinkles

Wrinkles in faux leather are unlikely; these are taken care of during the drying process. However, if you’re dealing with an excessively wrinkled garment:

  1. Turn the garment inside out.
  2. Place a pressing cloth over the garment.
  3. Use the lowest heat setting on the iron to remove wrinkles.

Cleaning faux leather furniture

Faux leather furniture means you’ll be cleaning a bigger area, and additional steps must be taken.

  1. Before you start fighting stains and dirt from your faux leather couch, vacuum off the entire couch, removing any crusty food and loose particles of dirt.
  2. Treat any stains.
  3. Wet a cloth with water and wipe the whole couch or chair down.
  4. If tough stains persist, use a leather cleaner/conditioner to treat the entire couch.

How to remove odors from faux leather

Tough odors like cigarette smoke, perspiration, or cooking odors, can easily get attached to faux leather. But don’t worry; all you need to remove is some baking soda and a little patience.

  1. Sprinkle baking soda over the inside and outside of the garment.
  2. Please place it in a large sealable plastic bag or tub, and let it sit for 24 hours.
  3. Remove the garment, and brush away the baking soda.
  4. Remove any final traces with a soft cloth dampened with plain water.
  5. The odor should be gone; if not, repeat one more time.

Tips on How to Clean Faux Leather

  • If you are dealing with ink or dye stains on faux leather, blot the area with a bit of rubbing alcohol on a soft cloth. Treat it from the outside edge of the stain toward the center to prevent it from spreading. When the stain is removed, wipe the area using a cloth dipped in plain water.
  • Do not wring and do not add any fabric softener to faux leather garments.
  • Never place faux leather in the dryer.
  • To speed drying time, wipe down the garment with a soft, absorbent microfiber cloth.
  • If using the iron on your faux leather garment, do not leave it in one spot for too long, or melting could occur. This is the kind of damage you can not return from.
  • Faux leather items like purses and shoes may not be meant for the wash. However, you can still keep them clean; you need to use a handwashing technique.
  • Baby wipes work extremely well when cleaning faux leather garments.
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