How to Clean Leather Car Seats

How to Clean Leather Car Seats - AutoGlanz AG Car Care

Joe Pritchard |

Cleaning your leather car seats is easy spraying a leather cleaner on and drying it off with a microfibre towel - in most cases,


In some cases - and if you want to protect your seats:

Then you might need a little more cleaning power. 

Discover the ins and outs of cleaning leather car seats and the best methods outlined in this ultimate leather cleaning guide

Let's get started.

Key Takeaways

  • Understand the process and anatomy of automotive leather to clean it effectively.
  • Cracks and missing pigment is a professional job
  • Choose the right cleaning products and techniques based on the level of soiling.
  • Protect your leather seats with a sealant
  • Protect your leather car seat with a conditioner

Two types of leather seats

There are two types of leather seats:

  • Genuine Leather
  • Vinyl Leather

Both look like car leather and "act as leather".


Most modern cars - eg. Tesla Model Y - are delivered with vinyl leather as it is much cheaper to install, as well as there can be ethical issues using "real" leather.

You can usually tell whether you have real leather by pressing a finger down on the leather seat.

If the material forms a kind of "spider web", then it is real leather, if there are just simple marks around - then you have vinyl leather. 

Real leather as opposed to vinyl leather


The products we suggest you can use - can be used both with genuine and "fake" leather.

For the remainder of this article we will not distinguish between the two and name it all: Leather.

Introduction to Leather Car Seat Care

Leather car seats are a popular choice for vehicle owners, adding a touch of luxury and elegance to your car's interior.

Leather seats are typically much easier to maintain than cloth seats, since dirt does not go deep into the leather, but usually remains on top of the leather. 

That being said:

We recommend giving your seats a leather sealant in order for you to have easy maintenance. 

Like all other parts of your car, regular maintenance of leather car seats is crucial to avoid dirt and colour transfer to build up. 

Please take into consideration the following:

  1. Choose a suitable leather cleaner and conditioner specifically formulated for automotive use to clean your seats and make leather soft.
  2. Test any cleaning product on a hidden area of the leather first to assess its impact.
  3. Vacuum or dust your leather seats regularly to prevent dirt from accumulating and impacting the leather's surface.
  4. For the best way to clean car seats, use a soft and gentle microfibre cloth as the mildest option, avoiding any rough materials that may scratch the leather.
  5. Be patient throughout the cleaning process and avoid scrubbing the leather seats vigorously. 
  6. Always attend to stains and spills immediately, as timely car seat stain removal ensures the preservation of leather quality.

By implementing the above tips, you will be well on your way to efficiently maintaining the aesthetics and functionality of your leather car seats. Adopting a proactive approach will prolong the life of your car's leather seats, ultimately optimizing your investment and ensuring a comfortable driving experience.

Evaluating Your Leather Car Seat's Condition

Before embarking on your DIY car seat cleaning journey, it's essential to assess your leather seats' current condition and any potential issues.

Take a short visual inspection in order to assess the best way to clean leather car seats: 

If the seats are cracked and are missing pigments - then this guide is not for you. 

You need a professional restoration of your seats, that can not be repaired by cleaning them.


On the other hand - even if your seats are extremely dirty, most of it - if not all - can be removed using our products, and bring them back to their original factory state. 

Read on ⬇️

Maintenance for Leather Car Seats

For the best leather car seat care and to prolong leather life, it's crucial to adopt an ongoing maintenance regimen.

Regular cleaning and conditioning prevent the leather from drying out, thereby maintaining its integrity and avoiding future damage. This section delves into the proper care techniques, determining how frequently to perform the car seat cleaning for optimal results.

While the recommended frequency of leather cleaning and conditioning may vary depending on the car's usage, it's typically ideal to clean and condition leather car seats every month. 

  1. Vacuum Cleaning: Always begin by vacuuming your leather car seats. This helps get rid of any dust, debris or loose dirt that may have accumulated. 
  2. Leather Cleaner Application: Apply our leather cleaner using either a microfiber cloth or a leather brush, depending on how dirty the seats are.
  3. Leather Sealing: If you're facing issues with colour transfer / jeans transfer, then you should apply a leather sealant
  4. Leather Conditioning: After cleaning the seats, apply our leather conditioner to ensure the leather remains soft and supple, which helps prolong its life.

By regularly cleaning and conditioning your car seats, you can greatly protect your investment and enjoy the comfort and luxury of well-maintained leather car seats for years to come.

Let's get on with how:

Vacuum the seats

Any leather cleaning starts with a seat that is free from any crumbs, dust or other loose dirt.

When vacuuming, make sure to exercise caution to prevent inadvertently scratching the surface of your seats. The tip of the vacuum nozzle, while effective in lifting dirt and debris, can pose a potential risk to the delicate leather. Opt for a soft brush attachment or adjust the suction power if your vacuum cleaner allows for customization.

Clean leather car seats

Drying the leather cleaner off the seat

Cleaning your leather seats with a dedicated leather cleaner is the best way to do a simple yet effective clean. To start, apply the leather cleaner to only one surface at a time. If the seats are only mildly soiled, then a microfiber cloth is an excellent choice to wipe the surface. This method helps lift dirt and grime without exerting too much pressure on the leather.

Auto Glanz Leather Cleanse - Leather Cleaner

In cases where the seats are more heavily soiled, consider using a soft leather brush to deep clean the leather surface. Apply the cleaner directly to the brush or to the seat, then use gentle, circular motions to agitate the dirt. The brush's soft bristles effectively dislodge contaminants without causing damage to the leather.

Auto Glanz Leather Brush

Throughout the cleaning process, exercise caution around stitching. Leather cleaners are designed for the leather itself and the brush might catch loose stitching.

Finish off either method by using a clean cloth to remove excess leather cleanse:

With leather cleanse - we believe to have developed the best leather seat cleaner for car / automotive usage.

Sealing your cleaning solution

Sealing your leather seats is a crucial step in preserving their beauty and protecting them from common issues like stains and colour transfer, particularly from denim jeans.

quality leather sealant forms a protective barrier on the surface of the leather, acting as a shield against liquids and contaminants. This proactive measure not only makes cleaning spills easier but also helps prevent permanent stains. 

Auto Glanz Hide Seal - Leather Sealant

Our sealant - Hide Seal is a exceptionally durable, non-slip leather and vinyl sealant.

Condition your seats with a leather conditioner

After cleaning and sealing, your leather should be conditioned in order to protect your leather car seats. 

Leather can lose its essential oils and moisture over time, leading to dryness, stiffness, and even cracking. Conditioning helps replenish these vital elements, preserving the integrity of the leather.

Our leather seat conditioner helps combat the effects of aging, environmental factors, and everyday wear and tear that can take a toll on your seats.

Auto Glanz Leather Conditioner - OEM Maintain

Regular conditioning not only keeps the leather hydrated but also enhances its resistance to stains and spills. The conditioning process creates a protective layer that makes it easier to wipe away contaminants, ensuring that your seats stay looking new for longer.

It is simple to apply. 

Simply spray a small amount on a microfibre cloth and work the cream in until all residual cream is gone.

READ MORE: How to clean cloth seats


In conclusion, proper leather car seat maintenance requires a comprehensive understanding of the material and car interior care. Following our ultimate leather cleaning tips ensure that you preserve the leather interior to a mint condition.



How often should I clean and condition my leather car seats?

Leather car seats require regular maintenance. It is recommended to clean and condition them regularly.   

What can I do if my leather car seats have stubborn stains?

For tough stains, a soft-bristled leather cleaning brush can help agitate and lift dirt. If the dirt persists, you may consider using specialized tools.

How can I protect my leather car seats after cleaning?

Apply a high-quality leather conditioner and/or leather sealant to help maintain the integrity of the leather and prevent future damage. 

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