Leather Care 101 - Why should we use Leather Balms & Conditioners

Leather is a beautiful and unique material. It allows us to craft functionally stunning works of art that we can keep for a lifetime when cared for correctly. Leather requires special care to maintain its appearance and longevity, much like our own skin. This blog post will discuss how to condition and restore your fine full-grain or top-grain leather goods. I will provide tips on keeping them in great shape for years, but first, some background information.

Vera Forma Leather Balm sitting on top of a piece of English Tan HORWEEN LEATHER with the left side being dry and right conditioned and darker

I've used many different products over the years and have never been fully satisfied with the results. So, naturally, I've gravitated towards "brewing," or shall we say, cooking my leather balm and leather care products. It’s for the very same reason that I got into leathercrafting and making quality products out of genuine* and authentic leathers at reasonable prices. Thus, the "Vera Forma Leather Balm," a leather conditioner & cleaner, was born. 100% natural, neutral in color, and no additives or smells added. It is used to restore or preserve the exterior of leather, the grain side. (You don't want to use any products on the "flesh side.") The balm helps make the leather fibers smooth and supple; it also makes them water-resistant. I will soon release a more waterproof option with a higher wax content. On Full Grain Leathers & Top Grain Leathers, it will polish and restore surface scratches and imperfections. To use the correct term, deeper scratches will also be less visible - healed.

With the proper care, your leather belongings can last for many years, if not generations. This brings us to the next topic.

Sweat and body grease from the oils' skin from the hair penetrates the leather's surface. This is caused over some time and due to regular contact. These fats oxidize (degrade) and deprive the leather of the effect of the tannins. The leather fiber loses its structure and disintegrates. The pH value of the sweat can also be a contributing factor.

Typical areas for such damage are the armrests of cars, steering wheels, and furniture. Men sweat more. Therefore, the disintegration is always extreme when men contact leather—regular cleaning and maintaining the leather delays such changes significantly. Furniture should also be provided with blankets or pillows in permanent skin and hair contact areas. Oxidative damage from skin and hair is caused by continuous use. With regular cleaning and care treatments, the process can be significantly delayed.

How do we use and apply a Leather Balm?         

Before beginning the application process, it is essential to ensure your item is clean and dry. At a minimum, you should wipe your leather article clean with a damp rag. Still, you may also need to use a cleaning solution if the leather is worn and dirty.

a person wiping clean a leather wallet

Using an all-natural product like the Vera Forma Balm, you may use your hands for easy application or a lint-free rag. Applying a leather balm with a rag is safer if you are not using an all-natural product like Vera Forma Balm.

The Vera Balm is 100% natural and made with food-grade ingredients. You could spread it on toast and eat it, but it might not taste good.

When your product is prepped and ready for the balm:

  • Use a small amount of product and begin massaging it into the leather. You should see immediate results, with the leather becoming more shiny and supple and most likely darker.
  • Continue using small amounts of the balm until the entire piece has been conditioned. Using a good quality brush helps spread the product and work into the leather fibers. A good quality brush, such as this horsehair leather brush, comes in handy to work in the balm into the leather fibers & to give the leather the final polish and bring out the shine. If you don't have a brush, a microfiber cloth will be fine.
  • Let the piece dry thoroughly before use, which may take 10 minutes to 24 hours, depending on the item and leather from which it is made. Some products may require light buffing after drying to remove any residual balm that was not absorbed. 
  • You may give the leather a final swift brush with a clean horsehair brush to bring out the final shine and luster. 

Take a look at the below Youtube Video by Tim from Black Flag Leather for more information on how to apply the Vera Forma or any other balm.


   Five additional care tips you can do to protect your leather belongings: 

  • Dust it off regularly. Dirt and dust can damage the finish over time.
  • Use a leather balm or cream to condition the leather regularly, 
  • Make sure the item is clean before applying the balm or cream, 
  • Be careful with what you put on the leather, and 
  • Make sure to dry it off straight away if your leather is exposed to water.

In Conclusion, don't worry; we've got you covered. In my opinion, the feedback and reviews of our customers (Amazon Reviews), the VF balm is one of the best leather balms and conditioners –  it only takes a couple of quick dabs every so often to keep your leather looking like new.

Not only does our balm work quickly to restore your leather's natural softness, but it also protects it from future wear and tear. So go ahead and apply away – your leather will thank you for it!

A hand reaching for the Vera Forma Leather Balm amongst a setting of leather and edc accesories

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to reach out to me at velid@veraforma.net. I would love to hear from you! And be sure to follow us on social media for more tips and tricks on caring for your leather goods, new product releases and launches, and fantastic giveaways. 

Be s to visit us on Instagram @veraformaleather  & Facebook as well as our Amazon USA Store.

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