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Olive oil Leather treatment

Submitted by Sheila

Rub olive oil into dry leather bags, shoes or upholstery with a soft, clean cloth; it will make old leather more supple. Then wipe off the excess with a tissue.

Visitors comments

OLIVE OIL STAIN ON LEATHER Comments By: BRENDA L. on 2005-03-23
PLEASE DO NOT DO THIS Comments By: Leather Agony Aunt - Consultant to the industry on 2007-10-20
This as one person has found can lead to much more damage if you do not know what you are dealing with. Consult professional advice before you do anythign else.

Using oils of any sort is not necessary on leather (it is an old wives tale) and in some cases can lead to severe damage.

Any oil stains which penetrate the leather cannot be cleaned out as you can only clean the surface of leather and not out of it. This would need professional specialised products to rectify.

I cannot understand why such bad advice is allowed to be posted as this could lead to expensive damage on someones leather furniture.

Always check out with the professionals first (and choose these carefully, there is a lot of misinformation on the internet)

leather oil stains, not DIY! Comments By: mahdee on 2008-09-28
Yes, get a professional cleaner or I have found that some baking soda on the stain left to sit overnight and then whisked off can help lighten a fresh stain. Otherwise, take the advice from a professional leather cleaner and do not try to treat it yourself. Leather is touchy depending what sort of a stain/paint/sealer is on/in it.

Unless you know, let the professional clean it for you or get advice from a pro.

Oilve oil extends the life of leather and protects it. Comments By: Merry on 2010-09-05
Old wife's tales are sometimes very useful. To soften and moisturise your leather with minimal colour changes Lanolin cream is very effective. It is very important to know what the effects of what you might be doing with the oil will be. Basting your leather goods with oil on the surface does penetrate and darken the leather unevenly as it is a skin. Skins absorb fluids irregularly and produce an unevenly coloured but lustrous finish that will protect and soften the leather for many years. If the leather is cracking despite years of waxing, waterproofing, ect..., oiling it will rehydrate it and slow the rate of wear and damage. The oil will also expand the leather and may close up fracture and minor punctures. Depending on how many coats you apply, the colour change may even out leaving only the hint of shadowy lines that are natural to the structure of the leather. It is important to keep in mind that everything ages and changes with time. The way your leather good looked when new will be very different 10 years later depending on how often you use it and in what conditions. If you want your leather to go on looking like new for most of its life it is best to pay a professional to care for it at least a few times a year. If you do not mind, or perhaps like the ageing and weathering process leather undergoes, perhaps you will enjoy oiling your leather and having its outward appearance vary over the years whilst its condition is preserved and its suppleness is enhanced. I have a motorcycle jacket that has seen over 25 years of service in the rains of Great Britain and Europe through to the deserts of Mexico and North Africa. It is several shades darker now than when new, but it is much better condition now than it was when new. On the other hand, I did not oil my gloves and I had to replace them within 5 years as the leather cracked at the joints of the fingers and the top of the knuckles. I have tried many types of oils: corn, olive, sunflower, linseed, cotton seed, ect..... Linseed oil has the best results by far leaving no film and absorbing quickly. Olive oil comes a close second as it costs significantly less and is absorbed in only a couple of hours. Most of the other oils are too viscous taking days to dry and leaving a sticky residue that attracts dust. To remove oil it is possible to use a mild detergent and soaking your leather in soapy water for some time. By agitating the leather in the water gently the soapy water can slowly penetrate it and lift the oil out. This is a very slow process that takes time, patience, care and much attention. The leather should be left to dry in a cool dry place with excellent ventilation and away from any source of heat. The leather good should also have some mould to help it keep its shape and dimensions. If the leather is an item of clothing hanging it will help it retain its shape. This washing will of course dry out the leather. I have also oiled my briefcases, travel bags, camera case, belts, gloves, hats, boots, and shoes. Black leather does not show much change of colour. If you have suede leather and you want it to retain its look, never oil it. Oiled leather can be very beautiful and rugged in addition to giving your item a very unique and personal appearance.
Olive oil will go rancid! Comments By: Chris on 2011-05-03
Please do NOT use Olive oil as a treatment for leather. Unlike some of the other oils mentioned, it never 'cures' and will eventually turn rancid - just the same as if you spread butter on you hat! Other oils that DO 'cure' are walnut, groundnut and sunflower but I would still recommend the extra cost of a genuine leather oil or cream.

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