Taking care of the leather in your car’s interior is very crucial if you want it to retain its aesthetic appeal for a long. One of the ways you can do this is by cleaning it regularly.
There are a lot of cleaning products out there that you can use on your car’s leather. Some are effective whereas others are a little bit unsafe. And that’s what brings us to today’s topic; can you use a magic eraser on leather?
If you have done your fair share of research on this topic, then you have probably come across a lot of conflicting opinions.
Some swear by this product and others will advise you not to even try using it on your car’s leather. For anyone desperate about cleaning and maintaining the look of their leather, this information can leave you confused wondering what to do next.
A good number of leather care products sold in auto shops often offer unsatisfactory results. They either change the texture of your leather seats and upholstery or give the leather an undesirable look.
So, it is understandable if you are looking into alternatives such as magic erasers. Magic erasers can be used on leather. As a matter of fact, they are great at removing dirt or dust on your leather upholstery.
A lot of car owners have expressed their satisfaction with the astonishing results offered by this affordable yet effective cleaning product. It restores the natural feel and looks of leather. However, there is a BUT.
This type of cleaning product wasn’t formulated to be used on leather. I am even surprised how car owners discovered its ability to clean leather.
DIY car detailers can be quite innovative at times. Anyway, back to magic erasers, these cleaning products are not ideal for leather surfaces.
Yes, it may clean your leather upholstery. But leather has the abrasiveness of fine-grit sandpaper. When rubbed with a lot of force, you could remove the clear coat at the top of the leather. Or even worse, take the dye off your leather.
The above effect of a magic eraser on leather makes this product quite risky to use. In an attempt to clean your car’s leather, you could end up doing more harm than good.
If you must use a magic eraser on leather, be very gentle. And always start with a spot test to confirm whether this is the right cleaning product for your car’s interior.
Table of Contents
- What are Magic Erasers and How Do They Work?
- Are Magic Erasers Safe on Leather?
- How to Clean Leather with Magic Erasers?
- Areas to Avoid When Using Magic Erasers
- What Other House Products Can You Use on Leather?
- How to Clean Leather Using the Magic Eraser Method?
What are Magic Erasers and How Do They Work?
To understand the safety of this product on your car’s leather, we need to analyze what this product is and how it works.
Magic erasers are often made from melanin foam sponges. Initially, they were used as soundproofing materials and for insulation. However, later on, a bunch of geniuses discovered that melanin foam could be used as an abrasive cleaner.
Magic erasers work as cleaning products when melanin cures into foam and becomes hard. This makes it resemble fine sandpaper that can loosen and remove dirt when scrubbed on a surface.
Magic erasers can clean a surface even when it is dry. However, when cleaning leather, you should soak it in some water so that it is gentle when removing dirt and grime.
To get the most out of the magic eraser when cleaning leather, cut it into smaller pieces. Because when it’s one huge chunk, it can easily break down.
Are Magic Erasers Safe on Leather?
In this day and era, you can’t come across a chemical-free cleaning product. Be as it may, magic erasers have been used for years and none of their ingredients have been termed as toxic.
The melanin foam found in magic erasers comprises a mixture of nitrogen, carbon, and hydrogen. All of which are safe on leather.
Magic erasers pose no danger to leather. The only worry is that the abrasiveness of this cleaner may eat through your leather’s clear coat or remove the dye.
It’s also worth noting that even though magic erasers are not biodegradable, they are a much safer alternative compared to other leather cleaning products.
How to Clean Leather with Magic Erasers?
The process is pretty much straightforward. All you need is some magic erasers and water. You can clean leather with a dry magic eraser, but there will be a lot of friction that can damage your leather.
To make it gentler, dip the magic eraser in some water and scrub gently on the leather. Magic erasers perform an exceptional job in cleaning surfaces, even leather. Therefore, you don’t need a lot of elbow grease for it to work.
Areas to Avoid When Using Magic Erasers
Magic erasers should not be used on delicate surfaces. This is one of the reasons why a lot of car owners are skeptical about using this product on their leather upholstery.
Due to its abrasiveness, magic erasers will scratch any delicate surface. Before using it on any surface, always do a patch test and confirm if it’s safe.
Here are 4 areas you should never clean with a magic eraser;
Here is the thing about magic erasers and cars. You can only use it to clean mats, carpets, or leather upholstery. All other components are off-bounds.
Because of how abrasive the magic eraser is, most car components are too delicate to withstand this type of material scrubbed against them. To be on the safe side, keep magic erasers off the above car parts.
What Other House Products Can You Use on Leather?
Are you afraid of a magic eraser removing your leather’s clear coat? Or, does this cleaning product seem a bit too harsh to use on leather?
Other house cleaning products are better and safer alternatives compared to the magic eraser. They include;
Vinegar and Olive Oil
However, when diluted with water, it becomes safer to use. To clean leather with vinegar, soak some of it in a microfiber cloth and rub the leather gently.
Dry it off with a clean towel and buff it with some olive oil. The latter acts as a conditioner that makes leather softer and suppler once it has been thoroughly cleaned.
Soap and Water
The good old-fashioned soap and water remain the safest and most effective way of cleaning leather. All you need is some hot water to break down dirt and grime and soap to thoroughly clean the leather. With a damp cloth wipe the leather and dry it right away. You can buff it with some olive oil afterward.
If the above alternatives don’t seem to work for you, and you are dealing with a stubborn stain on your leather, then rubbing alcohol is an excellent alternative.
A cotton ball dipped in rubbing alcohol can clean any stain on your leather in just a matter of minutes. The advantage of this alternative is that you don’t need to do any scrubbing or cleaning.
You however have to be careful with rubbing alcohol because it can be incompatible with your leather finish. So, always perform a patch test before using this cleaning agent.
Should you or your kids drop some chewing gum or candy on your leather, then you can use cold cleaning to clean the leather.
This type of cleaning alternative is only ideal for the above types of mess. If your leather is very messy then you need a more advanced cleaning agent.
To use cold cleaning, you will need to put some ice cubes in a sandwich bag and place it on the mess. The cold will compress it.
How to Clean Leather Using the Magic Eraser Method?
This process takes at least 20 minutes or more depending on how dirty your leather is. You will need at least 2 or 3 magic erasers, a spray bottle filled with water and deodorant, and a bucket of water.
To begin the cleaning process, soak the magic erasers in the bucket of water for about 10 minutes. Only remove them when they are soft.
Perform a spot test and see if there are any notable differences before and after cleaning. If everything is all good then proceed to rub the magic eraser on your leather in circular motions.
You will start to notice the grime and dirt coming off easily. Repeat this process until there is no more dirt coming from the leather.
After cleaning the leather with a magic eraser, use a microfiber cloth to dry the leather. When cleaning, be very careful not to soak the leather with water.
This will make it lose its form. Avoid using bleach or harsh cleaners alongside magic erasers. These will damage your leather. Magic eraser, by itself, is a strong product that can clean dirt, dust, and grime in leather.