At Cockpit USA we proudly regard our leather jackets as timeless heirlooms, made to be worn, loved and then passed down throught the generations. However, we know the jackets are likely to be exposed to fluctuating temperatures, harsh weather conditions and changes in environment over the years. Luckily, we have composed a simple guide on how to protect your leathers from the cruel clutches of the elements and make your bombers last a lifetime.
When preparing leather, there are three points to remember:
- Keep it clean
- Keep it dry
- Keep it protected
Keep it clean
Never use a normal detergent to wash leather. Only specialist products such as Lexol leather cleaner should be used. Apply a small amount to a clean, damp cloth and gently wipe off any surface dust and dirt. Always test products on a small, discreet area first.
Keep it dry
Using a clean towel, pat dry any excess moisture then allow the jacket to air dry. Avoid any direct sunlight or any strong sources of heat as this will dry out and stiffen the leather.
Keep it protected
Once dry, the leather must be protected in order to be maintained. Apply a small amount of conditioning solution, such as Lexol leather conditioner to a clean, damp sponge or cloth and rub into the leather in a gentle, circular motion. Repeat this procedure if it seems necessary. This process keeps the leather supple and prevents it from drying out and cracking.
Important points to remember
- Never apply bleach, alcohol, household cleaners, turpentine, mineral spirits, waxes or silicone to leather.
- To maintain its shape, hang leather jackets on wide, padded hangers. Avoid plastic bags and only use breathable garment bags for ventilated storage.
- Store leather jackets in a naturally dry environment to protect from excess humidity and the build-up of mildew.
- If the jacket is stored in an excessively dry environment, condition it regularly to prevent the leather from cracking.
- Remove salt deposits immediately using a damp cloth, then follow with the cleaning, drying and protecting procedure.
As the leader of all fabrics, leather has the staying power to endure many years. While the trappings of winter, from snow to salt and changes from cold to heat can dry out, crack and destroy leather, like all things worthwhile, a little care and attention is all that is needed to keep it revived and ready for lifetimes of wear!