Purchasing a new designer handbag for yourself is a treat well deserved. After all that slaving away at school or at your job, you’re definitely entitled to a gift that you’ll enjoy for many years to come. The thing is, nothing burns more than marring your gorgeous bag with a scratch or a food stain when you bring it out for the first time. Wear and tear is inevitable, but you’ll want to make sure your bag is as pristine as can be for a long time.
Thankfully, there are many ways to deal with scratches and stains on your handbag. It’s important to know these things before handling expensive goods, especially ones made of leather so that you’ll have a mess that can be cleaned up lickety-split.
Here’s what you need to know about treating stains and scratches on your handbags to keep them as immaculate as possible:
Rubbing Out Scratches
Avoiding scratches while toting your new handbag is pretty much impossible—after all, they may be brushing against other surfaces while you’re making your way to work or just down the street to your favorite café. Fortunately, rubbing out scratches is pretty easy, even on beautiful, smooth, pastel leather.
All you need is some white vinegar and a piece of cheesecloth or an old t-shirt. You’ll also need a separate cloth to buff the leather. Dab the cheesecloth or old t-shirt with some vinegar and apply it to the scratch. Use the separate cloth to buff the leather to your desired shine. This won’t completely remove the mark, but it will be much less noticeable. Apply some neutral shoe polish, and voilà! Your handbag is restored to near perfection.
Dealing With Makeup and Ink Stains
These can be pretty pesky stains to deal with despite our best efforts. A good rule of thumb is to store writing materials and makeup in separate pouches so that they don’t spill out and stain the bag. Unfortunately, these stains can be difficult to deal with, because attempting to treat it may cause the stain to grow even bigger or add more unsightly stains. Your best bet will be to take it to a professional and they’ll be able to take care of your bag in no time.
If your handbag is made of suede, brushing them a few times a month—once or twice is best—will keep it soft and clean. Otherwise, dirt on the surface of your bag will harden, causing the material to stiffen. You’ll also have a much harder time cleaning it.
Removing Food and Drink Spots
Sometimes, even when we pull all stops to make sure our expensive handbags are protected from crumbs and food stains, a wayward morsel makes its way onto the bag. Fortunately, for non-oil-based stains, all you’ll need is a damp cloth, napkin, cheesecloth or old t-shirt, and just wipe the area in gentle circular motions. Make sure that you don’t rub the same spot for too long or you’ll risk lifting the pigment, which will give your bag an uneven color. A good rule to keep in mind is to rub it for just fifteen to twenty seconds and allow the spot to dry for about a minute.
However, if the stain is oil-based—think pizza stains or cookie grease—you’ll want to take it to a professional.
Cleaning the Interior
While you may be chiefly concerned with the exterior appearance of your handbag, you should take a peek into the state of your handbag’s interior once in a while. Sometimes you’ll have random bits and bobs you’ve forgotten about, like tiny pieces of a biscuit you’ve eaten or a bunch of coins.
Cleaning the interior is fairly easy as most bags come with linings that are removable. Once you remove the lining, brush it with a suede brush to rid it of any grime or dust. If the leather is made of lining, brush it clean then gently wipe it down with a damp cloth.
To keep your handbag in tiptop shape, it’s generally recommended to clean it out every other month. You’ll also remember to remove things from your bag that you no longer need to carry around. Your bag will be clean and your shoulder will thank you.
An important step in preserving your bag is to store it properly when you aren’t using it. Stuff it with tissue paper or old clothing you no longer use to help it maintain its shape, but make sure not to stuff it to the brim! Store it upright on your shelf in a dust cover or cotton pillowcase and separate it from other bags using dividers. Pieces of cardboard should do the trick. Then, cover hardware with tissue paper and store chains and straps inside the bag. With these tips in mind, your handbag will look good as new for as long as possible.
Looking for quality handbags to add to your repertoire? Check us out at Hotter Handbags! We offer a stylish selection of handbags at low prices from top brands in the USA. Browse our website to find your next handbag today!