How to Restore Leather Smell

by Jennifer Hudock ; Updated September 28, 2017

Over time, the new leather smell may fade, but conditioning could restore that fragrant aroma.

leather image by Zbigniew Nowak from Fotolia.com

One of the things people love about leather is the way it smells when brand new. Leather car seats, jackets, furniture and boots all come with a distinct scent that may fade over time with regular use. Restoring that leather smell can be achieved with gentle cleaning and specific products specifically designed to polish and maintain natural leather. Polishing and restoring your leather will make it feel and smell good as new.

Wipe your leather item gently with a damp sponge. Make sure that the sponge isn't too wet, as water can damage leather permanently. Your aim is to remove any dust and debris that may be causing a musty smell.

Air your leather item out. If you're restoring the smell to your vehicle's leather seats, leave the car doors open for up to an hour to circulate fresh air throughout the vehicle. Hang leather clothing outdoors in a shady area for a couple hours. This may help lessen stubborn smells, like cigarette smoke or perfume, that have been absorbed into the leather.

Condition the leather item with a conditioner infused with leather scent. Apply a liberal amount of leather conditioner, and work it into the surface in circular motions with a soft lint-free cloth.

Allow the leather conditioner to dry, and reapply if necessary.

Buff the surface with another dry, lint-free towel to restore shine and activate the leather scent in the conditioner.

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About the Author

Jennifer Hudock is an author, editor and freelancer from Pennsylvania. She has upcoming work appearing in two Library of the Living Dead Press anthologies and has been published in numerous print and online journals, including eMuse, Real TV Addict and Strange Horizons. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English/creative writing from Bloomsburg University.