How to clean fabric & upholstery

Updated February 21, 2017

To extend the life of your fabrics and upholstery it is important to use the right cleaning products and treatment methods. Although chemical-laden products can effectively clean your fabric and leather, over time it can wear down or dull the material.

Mix the OxiClean powder with water and allow solution to dissolve. Apply the mixture to the stain on the fabric or upholstery, rub it in and allow it to sit for five minutes. After five minutes, blot the area with your cleaning cloth and rinse the spot. If the stain remains, repeat the application process followed by rinsing and allowing it to dry.

Clean your leather with mild soap. Leather can easily be damaged if you use the wrong cleaning products. As always, refer to the manufacturer tag located on the bottom of your furniture for cleaning instructions. If the tag says it is safe to use leather cleaning products, first use a vacuum cleaner to remove dirt and dust from the folds in the leather. Fill a bucket with a quart of warm water, and add 29.6ml of Lexol ph-Cleaner or liquid soap to the water and mix. Dip the rag in the mixture and wring out excess water. In a circular motion, wipe the leather furniture with the wet rag. Wet the second rag with warm water and wipe the leather to remove the soap mixture. Use the third rag to dry your leather, and the fourth rag to buff it with Lexol Conditioner.

Spray Resolve Multi Fabric Upholstery Cleaner or Simple Green Natural Carpet Care onto furniture. Cover the stain with the cleaning spray, and allow it to sit for five minutes. Use a clean cloth to blot the area, followed by rinsing the spot to remove the stain. Allow the area to dry, and repeat the previous steps if the stain remains visible.


Cleaning a stain as soon as it spills onto the upholstery is the best way to effectively remove it.


Do not soak the stain with the spray cleaner, as it can damage the fabric.

Things You'll Need

  • For fabric:
  • OxiClean Versatile Stain Remover Powder
  • Soft-cleaning cloth
  • Resolve Multi Fabric Upholstery Cleaner
  • Simple Green Naturals Carpet Care
  • For leather:
  • Liquid body soap or Lexol ph-Cleaner
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Four cleaning cloths
  • Lexol Conditioner
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article


About the Author

For three years, Etch Tabor worked as the technology and online editor at "InsideCounsel" magazine, a national publication for in-house counsel. He currently is a full-time freelance writer, specializing in legal, technology and comedy writing. He graduated in 2004 from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a degree in journalism.