Suede & Leather Cleaning Service
Suedes and leathers are probably the most problematic garments to clean because of the inherent characteristics of the natural material. Because of our many years’ experience, we undertake to return your garments to you with the best possible results taking into account their age and condition. Presto Clean staff will assess your leather and suede items here in our premises and talk you through the possible options for cleaning and care before accepting items for cleaning. Our honest and sincere advice is based on considerable experience over many years in the trade.
We also are now with the addition of our specialist Wet Care system from Electrolux able to clean UGG Boots, Leather Handbags and the like. Again Presto Clean is at the forefront of textile and garment care in N.Ireland.
Facts you should know about Suede & Leather Cleaning
- Leather is a natural product also known as or sub-classified as Hide, Suede, Sheepskin, Splits, Pigskin, Goatskin, etc.
- Leather is the skin of a once-living animal and is referred to as “hide” before processing. Hides or skins are washed in water, tanned and stretched before being pared and cut to shape. Although prepared in a water-based process they are best dry cleaned once made up into a garment but care has to be taken that the cleaning process used is compatible with the adhesives used during manufacture.
- Each panel in a leather garment may have come from a different animal. For this reason colour variation can occur after cleaning.
- Hides are batch dyed before being made up into a garment to ensure uniformity of colour on the finished garment. This process is designed to disguise natural imperfections in the skins, which may only become apparent again after cleaning.
- Look carefully at suede in particular and you will see natural lines occurring in the skin. The more expensive the garment, the less likely you will be to notice them. These are natural – they are veins or wrinkles.
- All garments are constructed from multiple panels. They will almost certainly lose some colour in cleaning and this will be more noticeable on suedes than leathers
- Suedes and leathers contain natural oils which can be removed during dry cleaning so the final part of our cleaning process replaces the lost oils so that the garment returns to you as close as possible to its original manufactured state.
- Leather is a fashion item and can come with many different finishes according to current trends. Painted finishes are perennially popular but do not clean well. In some cases they can appear faded after cleaning as the paint is partially removed and in the worst cases the paint finish may be removed entirely even though the care label states ‘dry clean’. We would recommend that such garments are not dry cleaned at all.
- Ball point pen ink cannot be removed from painted finishes because any surface treatment is likely to remove the painted finish as well.
- Alcohol spilt on Suede & Leather will stain and may not be removed by dry cleaning. When spilt on painted leather the alcohol may remove some of the painted finish itself and, whilst not necessarily noticeable before cleaning, it will become apparent as soon as the soiling has been removed.
- Suede can change texture after cleaning and may well become less supple. This should improve after some hours of wear and can be improved by very gentle steaming.
- Severely soiled and dirty suede/leather items may not clean well and our staff will advise you if this is the case when examining your garment. (If you bear in mind how difficult it can be to clean your own hands with soap and water when they are extremely dirty you can appreciate the difficulty in cleaning leathers as well).
- As part of our cleaning process the garments can be treated with Scotchgard or an equivalent silicone-based product. This will not make the garment waterproof but will help to protect it against soiling and reduce the need for frequent cleaning.
- New garments can be Scotchgarded without being cleaned.
- If a garment looks clean it may be more prudent not to dry clean it at all. As stated above, suedes may shrink slightly, relax and/or move and not look quite the same after cleaning while a well worn garment may already have lost shape and thus should be improved after cleaning and pressing on the correct professional equipment.
- Some suedes have glued seams, lapels, pocket flaps, etc. This glue can migrate through suede and show as dark marks on the surface of the garment. In such cases it can rarely be removed completely! If the manufacturer has used the correct glue this should not be a problem but if the garment’s care label states that the garment can be dry cleaned and migration still occurs the manufacturer should replace the item.
- Joseph suede & leather items and certain other brands, whilst expensive, are notoriously difficult to clean and we can only undertake to clean them at your own risk.
- All suede and some leather will shrink slightly in cleaning. British Standards indicate that 2-3% may be considered normal.