DIY Leather Conditioner: Clean, Condition & Protect Real Leather

by Albert Varkki updated 08-14-2023

Table Of Contents

jar of leather conditioner next to leather briefcase

One of the easiest ways to prolong the lifespan of leather goods, be it couches, jackets, boots, or bags, is with a quality leather conditioner.

It prevents dryness, protects against cracks, and restores natural shine.

In this guide to homemade leather conditioner, we’ll show you how to make your own DIY solution and keep your leather goods in perfect condition for longer.

Looks like too much hard work? Consider this Premium Leather Cream, which is all natural, and designed for real leather.

How to Make DIY Leather Conditioner

While you could purchase leather conditioner, you can easily make your own version at home.


diy leather conditioner ingredients

Here's what you'll need to make the leather conditioner:

  • ½ cup of white vinegar
  • 2 cups of linseed, flaxseed, or coconut oil
  • 1 cup of natural beeswax
  • A few drops of lemon essential oil (optional)
  • A saucepan

How To Make

man mixing leather conditioner

Here are the steps to make the leather conditioner:

  1. Melt the beeswax in the saucepan, stirring the whole time (without boiling)
  2. Add your preferred oil, white vinegar, and lemon essential oil (if using).
  3. Mix until blended
  4. Allow to cool

Didn't go well? You can always buy this Premium Leather Cream

How to Apply DIY Leather Conditioner

Video demonstration:

Here's the best way to apply leather conditioner:

  1. Clean your leather with a DIY or store-bought leather cleaner: Before applying leather conditioner, it is essential to clean your leather goods to remove any dirt or grime. Failure to do so could result in surface damage.
  2. Apply leather conditioner: With your leather surfaces prepped, you can apply your homemade leather conditioner. We recommend carrying out a spot test in an inconspicuous area first. Apply a small amount of your DIY leather conditioner onto a soft microfiber cloth and rub it gently into the surface using small circular motions.
  3. Buff to remove excess and restore shine: Use a clean microfiber cloth to buff your leather surfaces; this will not only help remove any excess conditioner but also give your leather goods a brilliant shine.
  4. Allow it to air dry: For best results, leave your freshly conditioned leather to air dry for at least 2-3 hours before using. In the case of leather sofas and car seats, we recommend drying them overnight.
  5. Repeat as necessary: Dry leather may need a second application of leather conditioner to restore moisture and natural shine. Repeat as necessary until you achieve your desired look.
  6. Polish: Use a clean cloth to polish and buff up the leather surface. This also ensures there is no remaining leather conditioner on the surface, protecting your clothes if you're wearing or sitting on the leather in question.

Doesn't look right? It's probably time to invest in a proper conditioner, like this one: Premium Leather Cream

How To Care for Leather Goods

leather conditioner before and after

Here's how to care for your leather goods:

  • Leather goods require more TLC than synthetic alternatives to maintain their best appearance.
  • Store leather shoes, boots, jackets, and purses at room temperature, away from direct sunlight.
  • If possible, use a humidity-controlled environment to prevent mold, mildew, or drying out.
  • Ideal conditions for leather goods are between 65 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit and 50 to 60 percent humidity.
  • When packing away winter leather boots, stuff them with packaging materials to maintain their shape.
  • Wrap leather boots in parchment paper and keep them in the original box to protect against scratches.
  • Apply leather conditioner before storing leather goods to prolong their lifespan significantly.

Leather goods are an investment that can last many years, or even decades, with proper care, but they require regular maintenance to keep them looking (and feeling) their best.

Something as simple as using a DIY leather cleaner could bring your beloved leather recliner, boots, or purse back to life, and it takes just minutes to make.

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We hope you enjoyed our article on DIY leather conditioner.

If you have any questions or comments, contact us at, or leave them in the comments.

Want to read more? Check out our Leather pages.

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Author: Albert Varkki

Albert Varkki is the co-founder of Von Baer. He understands leather products as a consumer, supplier, and a manufacturer, helping you with the inside knowledge you need, to choose the perfect leather product for you.

We always aim to have the highest editorial standards, and only publish accurate information on our website.

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