How to Repair Scratches on Leather Handbags

Updated April 17, 2017

Beautiful and durable as they may seem, leather handbags show their wear and tear easily, especially with scratches and scuffs. The earlier you can attend to these imperfections, the easier it is to keep your bag looking in good condition. A scratch or crack that is not dealt with, even a hairline one, can continue to snake through the exterior of your bag, which makes it harder to fix later on and reduces the quality of your expensive handbag or purse.

Apply a thin coat of conditioning cleaner formula all over your bag, especially on the crack or scratch. Allow it to dry for up to an hour and then buff off excess using small circular movements. For very light scratches, this may be all you need to do.

Trim any threads hanging off with a pair of hair shears. They're tiny and sharp, so they can cut very close to the bag. If threads are not cut, they can continue to pull and unravel.

Use a toothpick to gently apply matching leather dye to the discoloured scratch marks. Allow to dry completely.


Test leather dye in an inconspicuous area if you plan to dye the entire bag because it can dry lighter or darker than it appears when you first apply.

Things You'll Need

  • Leather repair kit with conditioning cleaner and dye (that matches your bag)
  • Clean rags
  • Hair shears
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About the Author

Misty Witenberg has been a magazine and freelance writer (including "Shape," "Fit Pregnancy," "Natural Health" and "Mom & Baby") since 2004. Her experience is in fashion, beauty, travel, fitness and culture writing.