LAST UPDATED: April 16, 2019
Best Leather Conditioners and Cleaners: Keep Your Car’s Interior Clean and Protected
Keep your car’s interior looking moisturized and sparkling clean with these top leather conditioners and cleaners
The Review Team
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PUBLISHED ON April 16, 2019
Many of today’s high-end cars come with an elegant leather-finished interior that feels good against your skin. Although leather is naturally a durable material, over time it will still crack, fade, or otherwise age. That's why it is important to use the best leather conditioner to restore the leather’s sheen. Here are our top picks to make your car’s seats look new.
This is a conditioner that smooths cracks on old leather and protects new leather from drying or aging.
It is non-toxic and can be used on all types of leather. A single application lasts for six months. Its unique formula deeply penetrates into the leather’s pores. It comes with a satisfaction guarantee.
It can significantly darken light-colored leather surfaces and doesn't work on suede or vinyl. It also can discolor fabric.
It lifts and suspends dirt and oil from leather for deep cleaning and restoration.
It comes in a complete kit with a conditioner that has a good odor. It also works well on light-colored leather.
It leaves a shiny finish if you apply too much or may leave white streaks when applied on dark leather. It is not effective in cleaning leather stitches.
It has a simple formula that removes dirt and residue while softening and moisturizing old leather.
It contains natural oils for effective cleaning and restoration. The conditioner works on both blended and smooth leather. It preserves the color of synthetic and natural leather as well.
The nozzle has a wide spray pattern. The conditioner also leaves a white residue when cleaning a dark cherry or black leather.
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Why Buy Leather Conditioner
- Prolong the leather’s life span. Leather products need to be moisturized, similar to the way you condition your skin. A conditioner brings back the lost moisture and rejuvenates it.
- Do more than just conventional cleaning. Occasional spills and leaks result in unsightly dirt and debris. These products effectively remove such grime, making them look new again.
- Make the leather water-repellent. Most conditioners have protective sealants that resist moisture in wet conditions. The leather surfaces will also be protected against UV rays.
- Reduce or remove discoloration. Constant friction and your body’s natural oils can cause grime and dirt to get trapped in the pores of the leather, making it look dull and aged. The best leather softener deepens the color, keeping the fiber supple and nourished.
- Restore the beauty of the seats. Extreme weather conditions can cause the leather to look broken, blurred, and hard. A conditioner restores the sheen and leaves you with a clean surface.
Types of Leather Conditioners and Cleaners
Pigmented or Protected Leather Conditioners
These conditioners have unique characteristics that make them a top choice for most car owners. They come with a silicone top coating to give the leather excellent dirt and water resistance. These are often used on the interiors of high-end automobiles.
Aniline and Nubuck Leather Conditioners
Aniline and nubuck leather conditioners are quite similar. Aniline leather conditioners protect the leather from stains, making them one of the best leather cleaners and conditioners. They ensure your leather looks and feels sparkling clean, the same way car polishes work. Nubuck conditioners, on the other hand, also have protective sealants.
Leather Conditioner Top Brands
This US-based company was founded in 1968. It is a family-owned firm that is known for producing top leather conditioners. All of its products have a non-toxic formula to recondition old leather. One of its top products is the Leather Honey Leather Conditioner.
This company was founded in 1954, and it provides high-quality products for both suppliers and customers. It also manufactures air compressors, chemical feed, and display instruments, in addition to leather care products. A popular product from this company is the Trinova Leather Cleaner.
KevianClean is a small family business in Tennessee that provides eco-friendly car care products at a competitive price. Wheel cleaners, car shampoos, and other cleaning accessories are just some of the products they offer. One of its top products is the KevianClean Leather Cleaner and Conditioner.
Chemical Guys is a company based in California that focuses on manufacturing the best-quality chemicals. The company specializes in hybrid coatings, small-batch waxes, and nano polishes. One of its top products is the Chemical Guys Leather Cleaner and Conditioner.
Weiman dates back to the early 1940s, starting off as a company providing home cleaning products. One of its top products is the Weiman Leather Car Cleaner and Conditioner.
The company was founded in 1983 and is famously known for producing cleaning and air freshening products. The Lexol brand provides leather and surface care solutions. The Lexol Leather Cleaner and Sponge Kit is one of its popular products.
Leather Conditioner and Cleaner Pricing
- $9-$15: Leather conditioners and cleaners within this price range come mostly in a wax form. Most car care first-timers find this an affordable price range to consider to keep their car seats clean.
- $15-$21: At the mid range, conditioners and cleaners offer many improved features. You can get a conditioner that is easy to apply to give your leather a soft and new look. Some brands offer cleaning products that are water-resistant as well.
- $21 and up: This price range is where you will find the best leather conditioners for cars. These higher-priced options have upscale features to protect and clean your leather. You can find conditioners that are pH-balanced, come in a complete kit, and dry quickly.
This is an important feature to look for in the best leather conditioners. The integrity of leather is best maintained when the solution has a neutral pH balance. Such a product will clean faster without damaging the leather.
Dust, dirt, grime, and body sweat can get trapped in the crevices or pores of the leather. It is, therefore, important to use a product that has a non-greasy formula to achieve a smooth, finished look.
Ease of Application
Leather conditioners are often available in either a spray, wax or liquid form. The best leather moisturizer is easy to apply without having to exert a lot of force. The spray option ensures a fast cleaning process.
- Included Chemicals: If you are sensitive to chemicals, you might want to choose a conditioner that is non-toxic, preferably one that contains natural ingredients.
Best Leather Conditioner and Cleaner Reviews & Recommendations 2020
This is our top pick for the best-rated leather conditioner since a single application can last around six months. The Leather Honey formula penetrates into the pores and hydrates individual fibers. This rejuvenates old leather, making it soft and flexible while smoothing the cracks and other scratches.
It comes with a satisfaction guarantee; you can always get a full refund if you don’t like it. There is no odor after application and the final result is water-repellent. The conditioner easily absorbs into worn leather and conceals cracks on old and dry leather.
The biggest downside is that it can significantly darken lighter-color leather surfaces. Its usefulness on other seat types is also limited since it does not work on suede or vinyl. It can also discolor fabric, so make sure it fully absorbs into the surface before sitting on the seat.
This conditioner comes as a complete kit. The vitamin E-enriched formula deeply penetrates into the pores to suspend dirt/oils and wipe away any contaminants. It is pH-balanced for an efficient cleaning process.
A great feature of the Chemical Guys conditioner is its spray bottle that makes application easy. A single application is usually enough to notice the difference. The conditioner also has a nice subtle smell and works well on light-colored surfaces. It absorbs into the leather and dries with a matte feel.
The main drawback is that it does not last long before needing reapplication. If you use a lot of the conditioner, it may leave an unnatural, shiny finish. It can also leave light-colored streaks behind when used on dark leather.
This conditioner is great for restoring neglected leather, moisturizing the surface and making it soft again. The Weiman Cleaner and Conditioner contains six natural oils that make it safe to use on a car’s interior to remove dirt and residue build-up. It comes in a spray bottle that requires only a single application.
This option is one of the few conditioners with a pleasant smell that lasts for quite a long time. Application wise, there is usually no need for buffing or rubbing; you can just wipe the conditioner over the leather directly. It also preserves the color of synthetic and genuine leather surfaces alike.
A major drawback is the spray nozzle pattern since it’s too wide to control the aim with a good amount of accuracy. The wide pattern makes it more likely to hit other surfaces in addition to the leather itself. The conditioner can leave a white residue behind, especially on dark cherry or black leather surfaces.
This is one of the best budget-friendly leather conditioners available. It cleans, polishes, and protects all kinds of leather products. You can use it on boots, shoes, jackets, and bags as well as furniture and car interiors. The application is fairly easy, too. All you need to do is to pour the liquid and spread it on the material.
The product features a powerful formula that efficiently maintains the material and prolongs its lifespan. You'll see the results almost immediately. The Bickmore conditioner softens the leather and makes it shiny in an instant, and all of that without sealing it up. The leather will be able to breathe and won't darken due to frequent conditioning.
What proves to be an issue with this conditioner is the lack of a waterproof coat. You might need to apply some wax for more protection and better polishing results. Also, some customers complained about the strong smell that lingers for a while.
This is a natural leather conditioner that efficiently maintains and protects all kinds of leather. It's ideal for cleaning car interiors and leather or vinyl car seats. Along with removing scratches and repairing faded spots, the conditioner also leaves a UV-protective coating.
The Chamberlain's Leather Milk cleaner also prolongs the material's lifespan. Although powerful, the formula is chemical-free and super safe for the leather and human skin. It's easy to apply and doesn't leave grease or that annoying sticky feeling behind. The liquid even has a pleasant coconut smell that lingers—it's just important not to mistake it with hand cream.
Lastly, the liquid dries fast and leaves the leather soft and moisturized. There are no stains or residues whatsoever. The package also includes an applicator you can use for faster cleaning and better results.
There are, however, a few drawbacks to keep in mind with this product. First of all, it works as a cleaner and conditioner but can't remove persistent stains and deep scratches. Secondly, it might slightly discolor the leather. It's not that noticeable on darker materials, but lighter ones might show more change.
The TriNova Leather conditioner is a high-quality product from a reliable company. It's ideal for all kinds of leather products and surfaces, including jackets, bags, purses, furniture, car interiors, seats, and much more. Thanks to the toxic-free formula, it's safe for use on a variety of different materials as well as human skin.
The formula works efficiently to resolve dirt and restore shine to the leather. By moisturizing the material, the product prevents cracks and peels, making the leather soft and shinier for longer. You'll have your car interior in great condition regardless of weather conditions. The conditioner leaves a protective coat that efficiently repels water and sun, leaving the surface super shiny.
Although the product is highly efficient, it does have several drawbacks that might bother customers. First, the cap is a little loose, so it's difficult to seal it properly. That might cause accidental leaks. Second, the product might require frequent reapplication for fresh-looking results.
The Leather Rescue conditioner is another product worthy of your attention. It's a powerful conditioner that restores and protects leather from wear, tear, and cracks. It even features a UV-protective coat that is very durable.
The conditioner is super gentle to the leather thanks to the pH-balanced and non-toxic formula. It moisturizes and conditions the material, leaving the shiny effect and natural scent. There are no residues or stains, and the application is fairly easy. Also, because it's formulated from a mixture of oils, the formula is safe and effective on different leather types, including untreated, treated, and exotic ones.
The oily formula might cause some issues, though. It takes quite some time to absorb, and you might notice some grease on top of the surface, even long after application. Also, the bottle is not very practical. It’s awkwardly designed and might slip through the fingers, especially if some leaks occur during the application.
If you're looking for a multi-purpose product that will work on different leather surfaces, Lexol Leather Conditioner is a good option. It's designed to preserve and protect the material and restore its natural shine in a few simple steps.
What makes this product stand out is the powerful formula that prevents leather cracks and premature aging. After only a few applications, the conditioner makes the leather soft and flexible, enhancing its durability. Because of its deep nourishing effects, the conditioner makes the leather look fresh and shiny for a long time.
The product is also super easy to apply. It pours and spreads very easily and leaves no stains or greasy residue behind. You can use it on upholstery, shoes, baggage, sports equipment, furniture, car interiors and seats, and other leather products.
However, some buyers don't think the product is very efficient in removing damaged spots. The conditioner works well for regular maintenance but probably won’t remove deep scratches and persistent stains. It also has a strong chemical smell that lingers.
This is a versatile product that cleans and conditions the leather simultaneously. It's convenient for all kinds of products, from jackets and shoes to upholstery and car interiors. The application is super easy and quick, which makes this conditioner perfect for both home and on-the-road use.
The conditioner efficiently wipes away dirt, grime, oils, and other residue. When applied continuously, it makes the leather super soft and smooth. The material looks great and also feels good against your skin.
It's important to mention that this product also prevents cracks and premature aging. The leather looks better and lasts longer. Also, the formula won't discolor the material but rather leaves a natural-looking finish behind.
However, if you need a product leaves a deep, glossy finish on the leather, this might not be the right option. Although it nourishes and preserves the material, the conditioner doesn't leave such an impressive coat. Also, it doesn't remove stubborn stains and marks, so you might need something stronger for bigger trouble spots.
Bickmore Leather Conditioner is a powerful product designed to maintain and protect leather long term. It's quite efficient in prolonging the lifespan of all kinds of leather products, from jackets to car seats. You'll find it quite convenient for maintaining different surfaces around the house.
The formula works to protect the leather from wear, tear, and different kinds of damage. It repels water, heat, sun, and dirt without removing natural oils from the material. That way, your product stays soft, smooth, and fresh looking all the time.
Many customers have noticed that the product is a little greasy. It leaves the surface super oily and takes quite some time to absorb. The best method would be to keep it overnight to dry, but it's time consuming and not perfect for quick clean-ups. Also, it has a strong chemical smell that lingers for a while.
Tips and Advice
- Park your vehicle in the shade when possible. Direct heat and sunlight cause fading, cracking, and drying on the leather surface. Invest in a good sunshade if possible.
- Test a conditioner first before using it. The various chemicals present in cleaners and conditioners may change the natural characteristics of your car’s interior. Test the product on a small section and let it sit for at least 24 hours.
- Choose cleaning products with neutral colors. There are certain conditioners that come with added dyes. If your car’s interior has a different hue, you might end up with a combination of colors.
- A little goes a long way in applying conditioners. When using a conditioner after cleaning, apply it in very small quantities. Too much conditioner can be detrimental since it prevents the leather from breathing, causing the fibers to rot.
Q. Will leather stain when it gets wet?
A. Rainwater will normally stain the leather. The extent of staining will depend on the type of leather and its finish. Aniline leather is porous and is susceptible to staining.
Q. Why does leather peel?
A. Leather peels when it is dry and lacks natural oils. Lower-grade leather or bonded leather is likely to peel.
Q. How can I identify the type of leather in my car?
A. You can usually identify the leather type by its feel. For example, aniline leathers are light and flexible. They almost feel like real skin. Protected or pigmented leathers, on the other hand, feel more like plastic to the touch.
Our top pick for the best leather conditioner is the Leather Honey Leather Conditioner. It is non-toxic, and one application lasts for six months, so your leather will stay nourished and protected.
A less pricey alternative is the Chemical Guys Leather Cleaner and Conditioner.