Last updated: August 11, 2021

Who hasn't heard this question after a shoe purchase: "Would you like to pick up an impregnating spray or leather care for your new shoes?" Everyone usually responds the same way: "No thanks, I still have some at home!"

But should you be asked this question after buying a leather sofa, you'd better not say no. Taking care of a leather sofa is extremely important to avoid unsightly cracks or porous leather. With our big leather sofa care test 2021 we want to help you find the right care for you.

We have compared the four different alternatives, leather balm, leather lotion, leather care spray and care cloths with each other and listed the respective advantages and disadvantages. This should make your purchase decision as easy as possible.

The most important facts

  • Leather sofa care allows your leather sofa to retain its attractiveness
  • Basically, a distinction is made between leather balm, leather lotion, leather care spray and care cloths
  • Leather sofa care is particularly suitable after cleaning your sofa and should be used on both new and old leather sofas

The Best Care For The Leather Sofa: Our Picks

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying leather sofa care

What is leather sofa care and what do I need it for?

Leather sofa care is used to maintain your leather sofa and aims to protect the sofa from ageing. Leather is like our skin. If you do not care for it properly, it can dry out, crack and also age faster. Sun and heat can also accelerate this ageing process.

For this reason, various leather sofa care products have been developed to protect your leather sofa from unsightly cracks and to give it what it really needs. If you want your leather sofa to look as good as new for as long as possible, you should not do without care.

Ledersofa Pflege-1

Old leather sofas lend your home a very special charm - with the right care, you can enjoy your set for a long time.
(Image source: / Timothy L Brock)

How much does leather sofa care cost?

Leather sofa care is offered in different price categories. According to our information, the prices are between 10-40€.

The care really does make a difference to the longevity of your sofa, so the price is justified.

However, you should make sure that you choose the right care for your leather sofa. Different products have different effects. Therefore, inform yourself well beforehand in order to avoid buying the wrong products and thus save money.

What alternatives are there to leather sofa care?

There is hardly any alternative to good leather sofa care.

The leather sofa must be cleaned before any care.

It is of course very important that you also care for and clean your sofa in everyday life. This cleaning forms the basis and supports the leather sofa care. You should not do without it at all, because only with the right cleaning can the care work properly.

Therefore, we would rather speak of a supplement to the leather sofa care and not of an alternative. The supplements are as follows:

  • Cleaning
  • Home remedy
  • Covers

Later we will go into more detail on how to clean your sofa properly or which home remedies you could use.

Decision: What types of leather sofa care are there and which is right for my sofa?

If you decide to get a leather sofa care, there are 4 alternatives you can choose between

  • Leather balm
  • Leather lotion
  • Leather care spray
  • Care cloths

The different alternatives each have advantages and disadvantages. Depending on what kind of leather sofa you have or what kind of damage you have on your sofa, a different type is suitable for you. We would like to make your decision easier with the following lists.

What are the characteristics of a leather balm and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

Leather balm prepares the leather and offers optimal protection. It has a refining, water-repellent, dirt-repellent and even colour-refreshing effect. Leather balm is usually made on the basis of beeswax, which gives it a pleasant and discreet smell. Furthermore, this also makes it particularly suitable for smooth leather products and provides a lot of moisture, which can prevent cracks.

  • Has a water- and dirt-repellent effect
  • Provides a lot of moisture
  • Pleasant scent
  • Cannot be used on nubuck, suede, alcantara, suede and suede
  • More difficult to work with
  • Longer application time

What are the characteristics of leather lotion and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

Leather lotion cleans, cares and moisturises, making your sofa look much softer. Another great advantage of leather lotion is that it is very easy to use and can be applied without any problems. A lotion also has an impregnating and conditioning effect. Lotion is thinner than balsam, for example, and can therefore penetrate deeper into the leather structure.

  • Easy to work with
  • Water-repellent and removes oil
  • Can also be used on other objects
  • Not applicable on nubuck, suede, Alcantara, suede and suede
  • No UV protection

What distinguishes a leather care spray and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

Leather care spray has the great advantage that it is very easy to apply. The spray function ensures that every part of the sofa gets product applied evenly. You can increase the life of your leather sofa in just one step. Furthermore, the product also works preventively. This means that fading due to sunlight can be delayed with regular use.

  • Prevents fading
  • Easy to use
  • Relatively much product needed to spray all parts of the sofa

What are the characteristics of a care cloth and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

The care cloths provide a quick cleaning for in between. Since they are often wet wipes, dust, for example, can also be removed easily. The wipes provide shine and a pleasant smell. However, in most cases the wipes are quite small, which makes the care of the sofa very time-consuming and you need a lot of product.

  • Can be used well in between
  • well suited for smaller surfaces
  • add shine
  • Rather impractical for larger areas, e.g. a complete leather sofa set

Buying criteria: You can use these factors to compare and evaluate leather sofa care

In the following, we will show you which aspects you can use to decide between the many possible leather sofa care products. The criteria you can use to compare leather sofa care products include:

In the following paragraphs, we will explain what the individual criteria are.


Some of the care products have the same effect on the sofa.

As you can already see from the different types of care, the care products have different effects. Many effects overlap, but you should still pay close attention to what is offered to you and whether the care can help your sofa. You should therefore have thought about what exactly you expect from the leather sofa care, or what is important to you.

For example, if a sofa is in front of a large window front where the daytime sun shines in, you definitely need a care product with UV protection. We will now list the possible effects again.

Effect Explanation
Colour refreshing Some leather sofas lose their colour over the years. Care products that intensively refresh the colour are suitable for this purpose.
UV protection If your sofa is constantly exposed to sunlight, care with UV protection is very important. Otherwise the leather sofa could look very faded after some time.
Dirt removal Through daily use, many things end up on a sofa that really have no business being there. The care products remove stains, oil or grease.
Moisturising Leather is a natural material, the skin of animals. Therefore, the sofa needs a lot of moisture to prevent cracks
Waterproofing It is easy to spill a glass or the leather sofa on the terrace gets wet in a rain shower. Here it is important that the sofa is well impregnated beforehand.

Many products offer an all-round effect. Some, however, do not. Therefore, you must inform yourself well beforehand about what the care offers so as not to be unpleasantly surprised afterwards.

Suitability for certain materials

A leather sofa can be made of different types of leather. Generally, a distinction is made between two types:

  1. Smooth leather
  2. Suede leather

Rough leather is usually much more sensitive than smooth leather. So if you have a suede sofa, e.g. made of suede or suede, then special care is required here. The care products are often highly concentrated and could destroy a sensitive suede sofa.

Ledersofa Pflege-2

There are many different types of leather - there are different care tips for each type.
(Image source: / natalaiaaggiato)

When buying leather, always make sure that it is really suitable for your leather sofa.

Suitability for certain sofa colours

Leather sofas come in a wide variety of colours. The colour spectrum ranges from brown to black to red. The care products often contain a certain amount of colour so that you can intensify the colour refreshment. If you have a red leather sofa, for example, you should of course make sure that it is either a red care product or a neutral care product.

Neutral care products, i.e. colourless care products, can be used on all leather colours without any problems.

Application time

Each product has a different application time. Depending on the care product, you should allow for a certain amount of time and also bear in mind that you may not be able to sit down on the sofa for a while.

Give the care product the time it needs. This is the only way to achieve the right and intensive effect.

We have listed a few guideline times below:

Type of care exposure time in minutes
Leather balm approx. 20 min
Leather lotion approx. 60 min
Care cloths approx. 10 min
Care spray approx. 20-30 min

The different exposure times can be attributed to the ingredients. For example, if the care product contains oils, it takes longer for the product to be absorbed than if it does not contain any oil.

Facts worth knowing about leather sofa care

How can I clean my leather sofa on a daily basis?

You should know that leather is actually a very robust material. If you care for it properly and regularly, a leather sofa will last much longer than other types of sofas. Cleaning is a prerequisite for special care. We have written down some tips for you on how to clean your sofa properly, regardless of the special leather sofa care:

  • Regularity: Remove dust from the sofa regularly, as dust draws moisture from the sofa
  • Cleaning aid: use chamois leather for cleaning, not microfibre cloths
  • Do not eat: Avoid eating on your sofa, crisps for example leave unsightly grease marks
  • Protect the seat: Use throws or blankets for protection
  • Damp wipe: Wipe with a damp cloth once a month, but only use distilled water

How often should I care for my leather sofa?

Special leather sofa care should be applied at least twice a year. Depending on your needs, you can also increase this to three times.

How do I apply the different types of care correctly?

The different types of care must be applied differently to a sofa. Always follow the manufacturer's instructions so that you do not damage the leather. We have compiled a list of the most common methods for you:

Type of care possible applications
Leather balm apply with a microfibre cloth
Leather lotion rub into the leather with a sponge or thin cloth
Leather spray spray onto a sponge or cloth and then spread

We have mentioned before that you should always use chamois leather instead of a microfibre cloth. Be careful not to damage your leather sofa.

What home remedies can I use to care for my leather sofa?

You already know that you should use a special leather care product no more than three times a year. As a supplement, there are many different home remedies that you can easily replicate at home.

Ledersofa Pflege-3

Home remedies can support care and cleaning, but are no substitute for special leather sofa care.
(Image source: / kerdkanno)

However, always test your remedy on a small, inconspicuous area of the sofa first to avoid unsightly stains or similar. We have summarised some tips and tricks for you here.

Tip Preparation Effect
Leather grease Heat 100 ml rapeseed oil and add 20-30 mg beeswax. Allow the mixture to cool and then apply the mixture has a moisturising effect and makes your sofa shine again.
Milk solution mix 150 ml water, 150 ml milk and one egg white. Apply a thin layer to the leather sofa set with a sponge, leave to soak in and then remove any residue The mixture will keep your sofa shiny for longer
Leather polish Mix equal parts of heated and cooled linseed oil with vinegar and apply Has a polishing effect

It is often reported that you can care for your leather sofa with a commercially available body lotion. If you have nothing else at home, you can use this home remedy. However, a body lotion from a drugstore is no substitute for special care.

Image source: Nobilior/

Why you can trust me?