How to get cigarette smoke out of leather

Updated February 21, 2017

Leather material can absorb odours, especially cigarette smoke odours. You are then left with a cigarette smell in your car, couch or jacket. Removing the smoke odour does not require special leather cleaners. As long as you use the correct methods, common household items can sufficiently get rid of the cigarette smoke smell. However, if the label on your leather item specifies that it requires professional cleaning, do not attempt to clean it yourself.

Plug the drain of your bath tub and turn on the hot water tap. Fill about one-third of the tub with hot water and close the bathroom door to fill the room with steam. It you have no bath tub in your bathroom, fill a large bucket with hot water.

Place a citrus freshener in the hot water to release the scent throughout the room.

Place the leather item in the bathroom with the citrus scent or about 30 minutes.

Mix 3 1/3 cups of olive oil, 1/3 cup Castile soap, eight to 12 drops of grapefruit seed extract and 1/2 gallon of water in a gallon jug. Add 40 to 60 drops of an essential oil with a scent that you like.

Pour the mixture into a spray bottle. Spray it onto the leather material, then rub the leather with a clean cloth. The scent of the essential oil will remain in the leather.


For large leather items that you can't move to the bathroom, loosely drape a large piece of plastic over it until the edges touch the floor. Immerse the citrus freshener in a bucket of hot water and place the bucket inside the plastic tent with the item. Seal the plastic by taping the edges to the floor. After about 30 minutes, continue the treatment with Step 4.

Things You'll Need

  • Hot water
  • Citrus freshener
  • Bucket
  • 1 1/3 cups olive oil
  • 1/3 cup Castile soap
  • 8 to 12 drops grapefruit seed extract
  • 1/2 gallon water
  • 40 to 60 drops essential oil
  • 1 gallon jug
  • 1 spray bottle
  • 1 clean cloth
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About the Author

Edriaan Koening began writing professionally in 2005, while studying toward her Bachelor of Arts in media and communications at the University of Melbourne. She has since written for several magazines and websites. Koening also holds a Master of Commerce in funds management and accounting from the University of New South Wales.