How to repair top coat of leather

Written by brenda priddy
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How to repair top coat of leather
Most leather has a top coating for protection, which sometimes needs repair. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Most commercial leather has a top coat placed over the leather for additional protection and dye retention. The top coat prevents the leather itself from scratching as easily, protects the colour from sun damage and keeps the leather soft and supple. When the leather gets scuffed or worn, the top coat wears away, exposing the dyed leather underneath the top coat. You can repair the leather and restore it back to the original finish by repairing the top coat and replacing it with a new coating. This will help it to last for many years.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Soft cloths
  • Spray acrylic lacquer
  • Leather conditioning cream

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  1. 1

    Clean the surface of the leather with a soft cloth dipped in rubbing alcohol. This will remove any grease, oil or previous coating from the leather, preparing it for a new top coat to protect the leather from sun exposure and scratching. You can rub along the gain of the leather or go against it, and rub gently.

  2. 2

    Spray the entire leather piece with spray acrylic lacquer. Use a formula designed for use on furniture and leather. Spray the lacquer in short bursts. Do not soak the leather. Spray a thin coating on the leather, then allow it to dry for about two hours. Spray a second coating of lacquer over the first. Allow the leather to dry overnight. Apply one final coat and dry overnight for ultimate protection.

  3. 3

    Place a small amount of leather conditioning cream onto a soft cloth. Rub the cream all over the leather to buff the leather to a high shine and remove any remaining scuffs. This will replace the top coat and restore the leather to its original shine and quality without damaging the leather.

  4. 4

    Allow the leather to soak up the conditioner overnight, then apply a second coat the next day. Allow the leather to dry overnight again, then wipe away any excess conditioner with a soft cloth.

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