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DIY - Leather Care Information

1 Leather Repairs
1.1 How do I CLEAN my Leather Jacket? How do I fix my SCRATCHED UP leathers? How do I make it look new?

See How To Clean & Repair video below for more information. On finished leathers with a low to high luster a shoe polish of the same color will work. If you use a shoe polish (available at virtually any department and grocery store), please read the instructions on the label after reviewing this article. Keep in mind, leather is leather, shoes or jacket won't matter. If using a shoe polish be sure to completely buff out the polish or it can rub off on your clothes.


We don't recommend trying to touch up light color leathers or suede. Both of those are virtually impossible to match perfectly and you may just ruin the article. Colors are scary to repair in some cases. If you are daring... you can try this next trick below to repair your colored leather products but no guarantees... read on...


Another trick for your black leather is to get some black shoe dye (significantly different than shoe polish) from the local department or grocery store and create a hard wad of soft CLEAN cotton cloth and dab on the shoe dye (DO NOT use the sponge on the bottle directly to the product you are repairing) and first rub it on some piece of junk cardboard and get the wet dye more damp than wet. Then you are ready to rub it on the scratches and scuffs. BE CAREFUL, too much dye will show and be obvious (that's why you don't directly put the dye on the product). Now you should be able to buff it and it will almost look as good as new. Depending on how much you put on and the brand you used will determine if you need to apply a conditioner or wax to smooth out the finish to blend it better. The conditioner could be one of several products like a leather lotion, leather balm, leather wax or even shoe polish in clear or matching color. Be sure to read the labels on the products being used first. Here is an excellent video to help you decide where to start!


2 Leather Care Questions
2.1 Do the products I use to protect my shoes work on my jacket or other leather items?

Read the labels. But generally yes. If it is made for leather, it will work fine on all your leather goods.

2.2 Do I need to condition a new coat or leather article when I buy it?

No. All leather articles in new condition are tanned with all the conditioners needed for immediate use.

2.3 Do I need to routinely need to clean my leather?

No. We recommend only to clean leather if it is dirty and most of all noticeably dirty. Cleaning with anything other than a damp rag can dry out the leather and cause excessive wear on the leather finish.

2.4 Do I need to waterproof a new leather jacket after I buy it?

It depends! Articles that will often be exposed to rain or outdoor environment (morning dew, etc.) will require it. Especially motorcycle accessories and leather apparel worn on the bike. We don't recommend storing leather bags on a motorcycle in a damp garage or storage since the dampness will destroy from underneath and inside the article. Remove the bags from the bike before long periods of storage time.

2.5 Why can't I wear my leather jacket in the rain?

Leather is skin, but it should not be thought of in the same way as LIVE skin. Skin remains healthy due to the natural oils it produces, leather cannot produce those oils to keep itself moisturized so you have to help it out. When leather gets wet the water draws the oils out of the leather and dries it out. To keep your leathers from drying in the rain you must take precautions beforehand. Leather conditioners, oils and waterproofing work wonders!

2.6 How do I clean my leather jacket?

Most surface dirt will clean with a damp cloth (save the money on costly cleaning bills). If it's finished leather with a low to high luster, you can use a touch of mild dish soap on a clean cloth. If still dirty, you will have to visit a local cleaners to send it out professionally. Oil stains and ink don't come out most of the time. We recommend shopping Jamin' Leather Online Catalog for a replacement.

2.7 How do I clean my suede item?

A suede cleaner is available from fine retailers, department stores and even your grocery store. Jamin' Leather doesn't carry the product because it generally doesn't work. That's right, it won't work to thoroughly clean your suede product unless you are just cleaning surface dirt that could very well come off with a damp cloth just as easily. You may opt to be sent out for a professional cleaning that is generally available at your local dry cleaners, but can often cost more than the article is worth to clean it. Sometimes suede brushes (soft wire bristle brush) work a bit, but often the person cleaning will brush off too much suede and create a bald spot that is worse. So, the unfortunate truth is that suede is hard to clean. Maybe that is why we carry so little suede here at Jamin' Leather.

2.8 How often do I have to reapply the waterproofing?

Depending on use and exposure to the elements. Often once a year if using a Mink Oil product and once a season with Protect-All Spray. The protector will breakdown in time, especially with extended exposure to moisture or sun.

2.9 How often do I need to reapply conditioner?

Only as often as you find results. Over conditioning can make the article oily. Depending on how much the article is absorbing the conditioner will determine the frequency. In general terms once a year to once every other year.

2.10 Is protecting with Silicone any good?

Honestly, we don't know since we don't sell it. How's that for being straight forward. Recently it has been said that silicone can breakdown the leather and ruin it. But I'm sure there are storage concerns that may effect any negative results. It used to be a product sworn by many for years by some.

2.11 My leather appears to be stiff. Will conditioning help?

On an old article, possibly. On a damaged article, no. More than likely it is stiff because it was stored in a very hot place - trunk of a car, back seat of a car, on radiator or heating element, or outdoors. If you really like the article, it might be worth a try to condition it.

2.12 My leathers smell. What can I do?

That depends on what it smells like. The rawhide smell can naturally smell like a cow pasture. But most likely what you are smelling is the dyes and finishes on the hide Almost nothing can be done to instantly remove the smell. All you should do is wear it outdoors often. The more you wear it and the warmth of your body will eventually soften the smell but never eliminate it. If your leather smells like body odor, you may need to take it to a professional to clean the jacket. There are some chemical cleaners that could help but we don't know or use any to recommend.

2.13 What is the best waterproofing product available?

Mink Oil for black leathers with low to high luster. Extra soft leather (AKA naked leather, nubuck, or buffed leathers as well as suede) we recommend our Protect-All Spray. Protect-All is one of the only formulas that will not darken the leather.

2.14 What would Jamin' Leather recommend for leather conditioner?

Not any one specific brand. We offer Mink Oil. Most all available today are of good quality and will do as the show on the label. Be sure to use the right product for the right job. Understand that a conditioner can also be a water repellent but most don't protect against water damage. Conditioner should not be used on suede or light color since they may change the color and texture.

2.15 Will conditioning make my leather last longer?

Yes. But understand it is not always needed on brand new articles. Conditioning will improve the life of the garment by restoring natural properties of the hide that often dry out in time.


For more information on leather types, leather care and leather repair, here are a few Jamin' Leather videos to help you understand better:

3 Leather Care Products
3.1 Neatsfoot Oil

Will darken light leathers. Sometimes, that's exactly what you want. Especially when it comes to saddlery, safety belts, gloves and other heavy unfinished leathers. Protects leather against stiffening and drying out. Restores leather's softness and makes it more pliable. Penetrates as it lubricates and waterproofs the fibers, yet allowing the leather to breathe. Just rub liberally into leather, wipe off excess and it's ready for storage or use. 8 oz bottle.

3.2 Leather Lotion

To clean, polish and protect your leathers as it conditions. A wax free, non-residue deep cleaner that also prevents cracking and restores dried leathers. Ideal for auto upholstery, leather furniture, leather garments and all finished leathers. Great for exotic leathers as well, such as snake, alligator etc.

3.3 Mink Oil

Mink oil leather water protection. The spray makes it easier for even coating on your leather article. Waterproofer, ideal for black leather. This item may darken light colors. Longest lasting water protection of all available. Waterproofs as it softens and preserves your finished leathers. Unlike paste, will not cake up in stitching and discolor in time. Apply freely and rub in for your degree of softness. A natural water protection and highly recommended by Jamin' Leather™.

3.4 Liquid Saddle Soap

No more yucky paste, now available in a pump sprayer. A deep cleaner and conditioner for all your natural and finished leathers. Just spray it on and wash with a soft damp cloth. Rub in any excess as you clean. Can be safe for some light colors, test an inconspicuous area first and let dry.

3.5 Leather Waterproof Spray

Recommended by Jamin' Leather™. A large bonus can of a high quality water protection. Made by KIWI™. This may be the single most important product you can purchase to prevent permanent staining from liquids that could penetrate the leather or suede. Ideal for colors and nylons as well.

4 Leather Types
4.1 What is the best leather for MOTORCYCLE APPAREL?

Here is a down and dirty shortcut and quick reference from cheapest to best leathers for motorcycle apparel:

POOR:Sheepskin - Lambskin - Patch Leather - Pigskin - Suedes
FAIR: Split Buffalo - Split Cowhide
GOOD: Top Grain Goatskin - Top Grain Buffalo - Top Grain Cowhide - Top Grain Horsehide
PREFERRED:Top Grain Premium Buffalo - Top Grain Premium Cowhide - Top Grain Naked Buffalo - Top Grain Naked Cowhide

To get the most bang for your buck Jamin' Leather recommends any of the top grain cowhides or buffalo leathers for protection for riding or motorcycle purposes.

4.2 What is Top Grain Pigskin?

Economically priced leather, noticeable hair follicle pattern, thin leather generally .8-1.0 mm thick.

4.3 What is Top Grain Cowhide?

Maximum valued material for texture and appearance, top grain finish, extremely durable, firm yet easy to break in, comfortable, thickness vary greatly from .8 mm thick to 1/8" thick for belting and saddlery, grain can be from extra smooth through a pebble grain uniform pattern, generally less expensive grains will have some spider web type gain pattern.

4.4 What is Top Grain Goatskin?

Economically priced leather more durable than pigskin but with a courser tiny pebble grain finish. Generally only available in weights of .9 to 1.1 mm thick.

4.5 What is Top Grain Horsehide?

Can be expensive but lately has been pricing similar to cowhide but happens to be harder to work with, stiffer and stronger. Ideal for bag and cases or heavy biker garments. Harder to find these days. Thicknesses from 1.0 to 1/8" thick.

4.6 What is Top Grain Calfskin?

Rare in comparison to other leathers, baby cow, more durable than cow, thin, softer, thickness range from .8 mm to 2.0 mm thickness.

4.7 What is Top Grain Buffalo?

Value priced, heavy duty leather, hair follicles and grain often evident, durable and generally found in thickness from .9 mm to 3.0 mm thick.

4.8 What is Top Grain Steerhide?

A skin from a male cow or male buffalo that is generally the same properties of each but a bit tougher than the female skins.

4.9 What is Top Grain Sheepskin/Lambskin?

Extremely soft, comfortable, pliable but can stretch and excessively distort the shape of the garment after excessive use, some tanning can be expensive, softer and plumper is more expensive, less expensive skins have a tight small pebble grain and the cheapest skins will be course in it's feel.

4.10 What is Top Grain Deerskin?

Most value in softness vs durability, extremely soft and extremely durable, generally very expensive. Pebble grain common. Soft touch and somewhat spongy in it's feel. Thickness is between 1.0 and 3.0 mm thick.

4.11 What is Top Grain Naked Leather?

This is a tanning process or lack of finishes giving it the Naked name. Any skin can be naked but most commonly you will find naked leathers in cowhide with all the durability and qualities of such. Generally a more expensive skin because they have to use choice skins (without markings and scars) for the leather to be used in manufacturing without waste.

4.12 What is Top Grain Distressed Buffalo?

A term used commonly these days as an uneven colored finish. Most common in light brown naked buffalo leather (where each panel on a garment is rarely a perfect match due to the unique qualities of each and every skin). In the 50's though the 80's, distressed leathers had been where the painted outer coat finish came off or rubbed off during use. Some people still use words like "rub off" or "pull up" (pull up has extra oils in it for a similar effect). Distressed can come in a variety of thicknesses, textures, skins and even colors.

4.13 What is Split Cowhide/Buffalo Leather?

Economically priced leather that can appear like top grain finish or a rustic cracked finish leather. strong and durable and can vary in thickness from .8 mm thick thru 1/8" thick.

4.14 What is Cow Suede?

Suede is a split leather. Maximum durability in a suede, comfortable, can come is a variety of softness, thickness can vary greatly from .8 mm thick thru 1/8" thick.

4.15 What is Pig Suede?

Suede is a split leather. Economically priced suede, noticeable hair follicle pattern, very soft, thin suede generally .8-1.0 mm thick.

4.16 What is Chamois?

Is baby lambskin and generally a split sueded skin. Absorbent and naturally yellow in color. This is the split section of the hide. Can be used in washable garments, stains easily, extremely soft to the touch and my dry stiff unless hung neatly to dry. Thickness is from .8 to 1.2 mm thick.

4.17 What is Patch Leather?

Random scraps of leather are sewn together and then pressed to make a large flat garment later cut into pattern parts to make things from jackets to bags. Generally any type of leather is used here. Most common is garment weights of .9 to 1.0 mm thick in a variety of pigskins, lambskins, goatskins, sheepskins and even cowhide.

5 Other FAQs
  1. We only ship to the credit card billing address.
  2. All payments are processed in US Dollars. 
  3. Duty and Taxes are the responsibility of the customer and may be required upon receipt.
  4. All outgoing packages to Canada & Puerto Rico are insured up to $100 maximum. If further insurance is required, please contact Jamin Leather by phone to place your order and request additional insurance.
  5. Shipping charges are required on all exchanges.
  6. US Postal Service is 7-21 days delivery time.
  7. We may apply a small handling charge over published shipping rates.
  8. We cannot ship any orders out as "GIFT".
  1. We recommend to order online for faster shipping information.
  2. PayPal orders ship immediately is most recommended for payment.
  3. Credit card orders will ship after they pass our fraud prevention processes.
  4. Outgoing packages are insured up to $100 for replacement only. 
  5. Tracking information will be emailed upon release.
  6. Claims on lost package can only be ordered after 90 days.
  7. Money Orders, checks or bank drafts will not be accepted for payment.
  8. Please allow 1-6 weeks to receive your package after payment is received.