Softening a Canvas Leather Bag Top 3 At-Home Methods

Leather bags are a beautiful and stylish accessory. However, the leather can become dry and stiff if they are not cared for properly. This can make the bag look unappealing and uncomfortable to carry. 

Fortunately, there are many ways to soften and restore a leather bag to its original beauty. This article will reveal creative methods to help you bring a canvas leather bag back to life.

Petroleum Jelly and Rubbing Alcohol

If you're looking for a quick at-home substitute for using natural oils to soften your leather bag, combining petroleum jelly and rubbing alcohol will produce comparable results.

Before using petroleum jelly, such as Vaseline, leather can be made softer by rubbing alcohol (also known as isopropyl alcohol). Along with providing your leather bag with a lovely shine and softening it, this mixture can aid in sealing the leather surface against moisture.

How to Use Alcohol and Vaseline to Soften Leather Bags

Using a large cotton pad and a substantial amount of alcohol, rub the stiff leather bag. Alcohol should be applied repeatedly to the bag's leather surface to create a constant shine.

When this occurs, the bag will absorb all of the alcohol. Spread a thin layer of your chosen petroleum jelly (Vaseline works great) over the leather bag after it has absorbed the alcohol to soften it.

Although petroleum jelly and rubbing alcohol work well, we advise using natural oils to soften leather purses. If you have no other options, use only the petroleum jelly and rubbing alcohol solution.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is one of the best natural oils for hydrating and softening leather bags. Coconut oil is not only simple to use, but it may also leave a water-resistant layer on your leather bag that you can use to ward off moisture and stop it from hardening. 

Coconut oil can deepen the leather by one or two hues and give your leather purse a wonderful sheen. The only leather handbag colours we advise using coconut oil to tan are black, dark brown, and dark red.

Consider applying an alternate treatment, such as a leather conditioner or mink oil, if you have a light-coloured leather bag.

How to Soften Leather Bags using Coconut Oil

Before applying coconut oil to your canvas leather messenger bag, spritz it with a thin solution of water and vinegar for more predictable results. Use a lightly dampened cloth to apply the water and vinegar combination to the entire leather surface of the bag.

Before incorporating the coconut oil, let the mixture dry in the bag. Then, apply the oil to the leather bag with a dry towel and a teaspoon of room-temperature coconut oil.

Work the oil slowly into the bag's handles, sides, and back leather. Once an even coating has been applied, let the oil absorb entirely before your subsequent use.

Neatsfoot Oil 

Cattle shin bones are the source of neatsfoot oil, a thick, yellow oil. If the oil is applied evenly and correctly, it is extensively used as a leather softener.

It might maintain the functionality of your leather bag and bring it back to its former state of flexibility, suppleness, and gloss. Because neatsfoot oil is acidic and good for leather, using it won't harm the material.

Nevertheless, cotton and other materials of a similar kind are neutral or slightly alkaline, so you will need to take care to avoid it from entering the interior lining. Hence, when using neatsfoot oil, keep your leather bag closed.

Like coconut oil, neatsfoot oil can penetrate lighter-coloured leather and cause it to deepen. If feasible, use this oil on dark leather totes instead. Another issue is the potential for leather to deteriorate when neatsfoot oil is used.

Check for any oxidation or discolouration in a small, discrete part of your leather bag; you can spot this by light peeling or flaking. You can prevent injury by doing this.

How to Soften Leather Bag Using Neatsfoot Oil

Apply a thin layer of neatsfoot oil on the exterior of your leather handbag or bag. Your leather purse may darken a little if you don't apply enough neatsfoot oil.

Then, we advise applying a small layer of neatsfoot oil. Let your leather purse thoroughly dry before using it. A few days later, if there isn't any visible weakening, yellowing, or oxidation, you might decide to add another coat.


Leather bags are versatile and stylish accessories. Proper care of them can help extend their life and keep them looking great. Softening a leather bag is a fairly simple process. Start by cleaning your bag with a damp cloth and mild soap. Next, use a leather conditioner to soften and moisturise the leather. Lastly, use a leather protection cream to protect the leather from dirt and water. Following these steps will help you buy bags in London that will last long.

Troop London offers the best canvas bags in the world travel bags, suitcase luggage, canvas cross-body bags, canvas laptop messenger bags, backpack rucksacks and more. Shop for a canvas leather bag now to get free global delivery!