How to get water stains out of leather

Updated March 28, 2018

Most of the time, any type of water drip or spill doesn't leave a mark on your shoes, furniture or jackets. However, leather is one exception to the rule. Leather is a natural material made from tanned animal hide that was first used primarily for clothing and tents. With the widespread use of leather in homes, offices and cars, it's important to know how to get any stain out of leather, and water may be the most common spill to cause unsightly stains and marks.

Wet your rag or sponge with water and wring as much of the water out as possible if the spot is already dry. If the water stain is still wet, proceed to Steps 5 and 6.

Start at the stain, and use gentle strokes to moisten the area, moving outward from the water stain.

Air-dry the area. If you are pressed for time, use a hair dryer to speed up the drying process. Use the lowest setting, and keep at least 15 cm (6 inches) between the hair dryer and the leather you are drying.

Inspect for any signs of the original water stain once the leather is dry. If the stain is still visible, proceed to the next step.

Remove the crust from the slice of bread, and roll the bread into a ball.

Gently rub the bread on the water stain until it is no longer visible.


Treat the water stain as soon as possible. If you aren't able to remove the water stain on your own, call your local dry cleaner (for clothing) or furniture care specialist (for leather furniture).

Things You'll Need

  • Clean rag or sponge
  • Hair dryer
  • Slice of bread
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About the Author

Jess Jones has been a freelance writer since 2005. She has been a featured contributing writer for "Curve Magazine" and she teaches English composition at a small college in Ann Arbor, Michigan. She received her Master of Arts in English language and literature in 2002.