Leather Therapy Makes Leather Behave...Beautifully

Removing Mould and Mildew from Leather

Saddle before Leather Therapy
Saddle after Leather Therapy

Yes, leather cleaners can remove mould and mildew—the photos at left are testamount to that—but it is very important to choose cleaners that don’t ruin your leather in the process or set the scene for future mould and mildew invasions.

Leather is made of a tangled mass of fine root-like fibres, and once microscopic mould and mildew spores lodge deeply in this tangle they are very difficult to shift. Anything strong enough to penetrate the fibre tangle and destroy every spore could damage the leather fibres as well, compromising the leather’s structure and stength.

Don’t use oldtime remedies like vinegar, household bleach or alcohol—the concentrations needed to kill mould and mildew spores are also strong enough to damage the internal leather fibres. Also avoid traditional cleaners like saddle soap on already mouldy leather—these contain glycerin, which attracts and holds the very atmospheric moisture mould and mildew thrive on.

Rather, use penetrating, pH-neutral products like Leather Therapy, which lubricate leather deep to the core without introducing moisture, and which inhibit future mould and mildew growth. Leather Therapy Restorer and Conditioner is the only United States Environmental Protection Agency tested and approved product that contains ingredients that inhibit growth of mould and mildew

The story of the above Before and After photos of a mouldy mildewed saddle showing Leather Therapy in action can be read in this testimonial.

Leather Therapy Wash
Leather Therapy Restorer/Conditioner
Leather Therapy Finish
Leather Therapy Water Repellant
Leather Therapy Sampler
Leather Therapy Touchup Dye (Black Only)
  1. Take the mouldy or mildewed item outside to clean if at all possible—simply touching a mould or mildew patch will release countless numbers of spores into the air and you do not want to spread these inside where they can colonise other leather items. Failing that, remove any small leather items that are nearby and try to work in as well ventilated an area with as much natural lighting or direct sunlight as possible to minimise cross-contamination by mould and mildew spores
  2. Have a supply of old rags you are prepared to throw away. Wipe as much surface contamination as you can with a wet rag, then discard. Repeat with a clean wet rag. Be sure to discard rags in a way that won’t allow spores to spread further. Don’t rinse and reuse the rags as you will never remove all spores on the rags. Use an old toothbrush to clean stitching lines and crevices
  3. Next, with all visible surface mould or mildew removed, use a water-based, pH neutral product like Leather Therapy Wash to give a safe, deep clean that removes the embedded dirt and organic residue that aids future mould and mildew growth
  4. Allow the leather to dry fully in the sun—not only will evaporating excess moisture from the leather prevent new spores taking hold, but the UV rays of the sunlight will kill any remaining spores
  5. Once dry, condition the leather with a pH-neutral product such as Leather Therapy Restorer/Conditioner. Apply the conditioner with a sponge, VERY sparingly as leather will only absorb what it needs. The Restorer/Conditioner will soak in and disappear, so there’s no need to wipe off. It will not stay wet or greasy unless you apply too much at once. The conditioner will not alter the colour or the gloss of your leather. But it will penetrate deep into the centre of the leather, nourishing and lubricating the fibres without introducing the moisture that allows mould and mildew to take hold. And being pH neutral means it won’t interfere with the natural acidic environment of leather but will increase its life. Leather Therapy Restorer and Conditioner is the only United States Environmental Protection Agency tested and approved product that contains ingredients that inhibit growth of mould and mildew
  6. We suggest you repeat this process with Wash and Restorer/Conditioner every three months to add years of life to your leather. Wash keeps the leather clean on the outside while Restorer/Conditioner nourishes and protects the leather from mould and mildew from the inside
  7. Wash and Restorer/Conditioner are all you need for basic ongoing leather care and protection. However, you may wish to go a little further and use Leather Therapy Finish to give your precious leather a beautiful new shine while providing a protective shield from the elements. (Not recommended for leather intended to have a non-shiny appearance)
  8. A final treatment with Leather Therapy Water Repellant will give even more protection from water, wine, tea, coffee, dirt, mud and salt. Unlike Finish, the repellant will not make the leather look shiny. If anything it tends to give the leather a more matt finish so is best not used on anything you want to look glossy

Other products available are the Leather Therapy Sampler and the Leather Therapy Touchup Dye. The Sampler is ideal as a gift, or as an economical way to sample each product on your own items. The Sampler contains a 2oz / 59mL bottle each of Wash, Restorer, Finish and Repellant and a handy applicator sponge.

The Touchup Dye is only available in black, but is perfect for touching up nicks, scratches and dings on saddles, car and motorcycle seats, jackets, pants, racing suits, gloves, boots, belts, saddlebags, luggage, lounges, and any other black leather items you may own. Touchup is a genuine leather dye and very permanent. It will not add any stiffness to the leather and dries to a matt-semi gloss finish.

Mould and mildew like warm, damp and dark places where the humidity is between 55% and 85%. Minimise your precious leather’s exposure to these and you minimise the chances of mould and mildew colonising your leather. Prevention is always better than cure!