How to remove wax stains on leather

The chances of removing wax stains on leather depend entirely on the type of the leather. Porous aniline, suede and nubuck are more difficult to treat, because the wax sinks into the surface. Coloured waxes can also cause problems, as the containing dye may colour the leather too.


Wax hardens when it gets cold. The colder the wax on a leather surface, the easier it is to remove it. If possible, use compressed air to blow the wax stains off. The compressed air cools down the wax and the air pressure blows the stains away. Especially with suede and nubuck, this is the ideal method. You can also roll smooth leathers to flake off wax residues. If you don’t have access to compressed air, cool down the stains with cooling elements from the freezer. Wrap a dry cloth around to absorb condensation humidity. Try to remove the wax by splintering and flaking off. It also helps to roll the leather by holding it between your thumb and your index finger. On pigmented leathers (wax remains on the colour coating) residues of wax can be removed by using a cloth to wipe away with a hair dryer to melt the wax. This method doesn’t work on absorbent leathers. Stains can even increase.



To remove drawn wax residues, heat the stains with a hair dryer and try to remove the stains with an absorbent powder (chalk dust or magnesium powder). Rub in the powder and let cool down. Remove the powder with a vacuum cleaner and a brush. Repeat until no further improvement can be achieved. You cannot predict whether the stains disappear completely. If the result is not sufficient, it will need to be treated professionally. But not all leather types can be saved. Stained leather clothing should be given to a dry cleaning company specialising in leather. Most cases can be saved this way.

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