How to clean the dye transfer of jeans on leather seats

Light-coloured leather seats provide a refreshing and relaxing environment to any room. Unfortunately, their light colouring also attracts stains that would not show on other leather colours. One of the biggest culprits for dying light-coloured leather is jeans. The dark wash on many jeans rubs into the leather, causing a stain on the surface of the leather. Several methods will effectively remove the stain from the leather.

Place a few drops of clear washing up liquid onto a white washcloth. If the stain is removed with this method, then there is no need to purchase expensive dye removers.

Dip the washcloth into warm water and rub the soap into the washcloth. Wring out the cloth until it is damp but not soaking.

Rub the washcloth over the jean dye transfer in a brisk, circular motion. You may have to rub quite vigorously. After about 30 seconds, check the washcloth to see if any dye has come off the leather. If there is any tint to the washcloth, then this method is working.

Continue rubbing the washcloth over the leather until no more dye comes off and onto the washcloth. If dye is still present on the sofa, then it may need an additional stain remover.

Purchase leather dye transfer remover. Some formulas are designed specifically for denim dye removal. Try to find this version of the cleaner.

Spray a small amount of the cleaner onto a dry white washcloth. Test on an invisible area of the leather first for colour fastness. Rub the stain remover over the stain until the entire stain is lifted.

Apply ordinary leather cleaner over the area where the stain was. This will help remove any remaining stain remover and soap residue.

Apply a leather conditioning product all over the leather seat using a soft cloth. Rub in circular motions to condition the leather.


In the future, try not to sit on the sofa when wearing jeans that leave dye stains.


If the package directions for the stain remover differ from these instructions, follow those instructions instead. Not all dye removers work the same way. The stain remover manufacturer knows the best way to apply its particular product. These cleaners and removers may cause irritation to your skin. Wear gloves while removing the dye transfer to protect your hands from damage.

Things You'll Need

  • Clear washing up liquid
  • White washcloths
  • Dye transfer remover
  • Leather cleaner
  • Leather conditioner
  • Soft cloth
  • Gloves
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About the Author

Brenda Priddy has more than 10 years of crafting and design experience, as well as more than six years of professional writing experience. Her work appears in online publications such as Donna Rae at Home, Five Minutes for Going Green and Daily Mayo. Priddy also writes for Archstone Business Solutions and holds an Associate of Arts in English from McLennan Community College.