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Deja_vu's avatar

What is the best way to clean mold off my leather purse without destroying it?

Asked by Deja_vu (4142 points ) February 21st, 2011

I live in a very humid climate and it’s also been pouring rain for the last month. Today I decided to reorganize my closet and there is mold on many of my leather stuff. Everything from boots, most of my shoes, my handbags. There is even mold on my favorite Isabella Fiore bag and my Betsy Johnson luggage. This is a nightmare. I want to clean it all fast before it gets worse. I checked the inside of all my bags and the mold hasn’t gotten to any of the lining yet.
What is the best way to clean mold off my things without destroying it?

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6 Answers

ette_'s avatar

There are a lot of different types of leather cleaners available at various outlets—I would check to make sure you get a gentle one. I know Coach makes one, and also Leatherstuff.com sells one which I think is very popular.

Bellatrix's avatar

I hear you @Deja_vu. I am in Queensland, Australia and we have never had a mold problem before but I pulled out a leather briefcase this morning… mold. I just brushed it off and then wiped it over but for other places I have been using Oil of Cloves. It was even on my timber blinds. It apparently helps stop the mold returning. Not sure about using that on my leather goods either though.

bkcunningham's avatar

Lysol spray disinfectant.

auntydeb's avatar

You could try Saddle Soap, used for horse tackle. It works on all leather, reconditions it and leaves it smelling fresh. If applied properly, a thin residue will be left that should help hold back the mold.

Make sure everything is properly dry before storing them again, the cupboard itself may need some extra ventilation to help prevent regrowth. For health reasons, it might be as well to clear the cupboard right out and treat it with something to kill that mold, it’s not good to be breathing the stuff!

gailcalled's avatar

I would wipe all mold off with a cloth dampened with water and a little vinegar. Wipe dry and leave in the sun for a while.

Then, on all leather surfaces apply Neatsfoot Oil,
or the equally useful MInk oil.

snowberry's avatar

Mink or neatsfoot oils are good for leather (normally used for waterproofing), but because they are both oils they can change the color of the leather, and if there is decorative stitching, it can alter that as well. You cannot use oil on suede without ruining the finish.

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