Patent leather is normally used to create luxurious bags and shoes. Normally, this material looks at its best when it is shiny and bright. However, the elements that people normally endure everyday like dirt, grime, and water can lay waste on the leather that will result in the drying and cracking of its surface. Dried and cracked leather will then appear dull and undesirable. Fortunately, with a few tricks up your sleeve, you can actually bring back the sheen into the patent leather surface easily. Furthermore, these same leather-shining techniques can be done regularly so that you can maintain the health and shine of the leather for years to come.
Clean the leather. Regardless if the patent leather is a pair of shoes or a bag, the first step in restoring its beauty and shine will be to remove all the dirt, dust, and grime that have accumulated on the surface. Wipe and scrub it all away with a clean and lint-free cloth rag. You may dampen the cloth with water if the residue on it seems too tough to remove. A wet cloth should loosen any dirt on it. Don’t worry. You will be treating the leather later so a little moisture is not bad.
Prepare a thorough cleaning solution. While most people don’t believe it, a good mixture of one part vinegar and one part water is good in removing stains and residue on leather. Dampen a rag with the solution and wipe it all around the leather. Scrub stained parts gently to make the solution seep in and set.
Wipe the vinegar solution off. After leaving the solution to sit on the leather for a couple of minutes get another clean rag dampened with pure water and wipe the vinegar off of the leather surface. Wipe the leather dry with a lint-free cloth afterwards.
Apply the shine. Beeswax or petroleum jelly can really work wonders on a patent leather surface. Place a generous amount on a clean rag and start applying it onto the leather surface. Make sure to really work in the jelly or beeswax into the leather. Firm circular motions are needed to accomplish this. Once the surface has been well lubricated, allow it to set and seep into the leather for about an hour or two.
Buff the leather. After an hour of letting the lubrication set, get a clean cloth or rag and start wiping and buffing it. If you have a buffing brush or sponge, you may use this as well. Keep at it until every part of the leather is shiny and glorious again.
Use an alternative. Another alternative to bring back the shine into a patent leather surface will be to use olive oil as a lubricant. Apply olive oil onto a clean and lint-free cloth and gently spread it all around the leather. Keep rubbing until you see it glimmer and shine. Keep buffing until you are satisfied.
If these tricks don’t work and the leather is heavily stained and dull, you may want to visit a leather treatment professional and have him work on it. In addition, never use commercial shoe polish on patent leather, as it will surely destroy the shine you want to achieve.