Car professionals, detailers and leather furniture repair and cleaning specialists are reaping the benefits of having a Colourlock trade account.
As well as the all-important discount prices on our products, trade customers can access a range of services for help with cleaning, restoring and caring for leather.
Access to quick repair methods and techniques
24-hour turnaround on special colour mixes, including identifying the right automotive colour match
Regular updates and special offers
As a trade customer you can sign up for one of our dedicated training courses. These are run one-to-one or in groups. We can come to you or you can come to us. The courses are very popular, and our experts are more than happy to share their knowledge.
Apply to be a Colourlock Centre
We also partner with detailers and other leather care professionals who would like to become trainers themselves on the Colourlock methods. With this train the trainer concept, you will have the status of a Colourlock Centre.
If you offer a repair service and would like to learn how to train others, simply apply to become a Colourlock Centre by email at email@example.com
Creating an account is easy
Opening a trade account is straightforward – creating a password is as hard as it gets!
If you are a leather professional and purchase from us regularly, then a trade account is the way forward. Why not join the hundreds who have already signed up and are enjoying the benefits?
Simply select ‘Professionals’ from the menu bar of the website and click on sign up/sign in, or click here to jump straight in!
Leather seats – so much more comfortable and attractive than some of the chairs you might normally expect to find in a lecture or meeting room.
BT has shown consideration for delegates attending its state-of-the-art Main Auditorium in London by opting for leather-upholstered seating. As well as being kinder on the posterior, leather is much more likely to encourage people to pay attention to the presentations. After all, it’s very easy to let your mind wander if you’re not sitting comfortably.
However, like all things leather, seating must be cared for and, over time, will need some restoration work. Colourlock was asked to revive the colour on all 170 seats. The main challenge was to avoid spraying the brand-new television screens with paint!
First, we had to prepare the colour. The leather is a special BT blue which we had to custom mix.
Before applying the colour, we cleaned and degreased the leather with COLOURLOCK Leather Cleaning Spirit then filled damaged areas with COLOURLOCK Fluid Leather Filler. We sprayed COLOURLOCK Primer onto the leather to ensure that the colour stuck. After spraying all 170 seats, we finished off with COLOURLOCK Top-Coat, which acts as a seal.
The job was completed successfully in ?? days and, as the picture shows, the results speak for themselves.
If you would like to know more about restoring leather seats, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
White leather furniture may look stunning but the big question is how to keep it clean and pristine. Stories of nearly new Tesla’s with white leather (or vegan leather – polite word for fake leather) seats that have dye transfer from jeans are common.
The same goes for faux leather – in fact any upholstery in white. The easiest way to avoid dirt, stains and dye transfer from clothes is not to sit on the furniture. Of course, that’s totally impractical.
An added problem with white leather is that it can develop a yellowish hue as it ages. This is part of the natural oxidation process. While you can’t stop it happening completely, it is possible to slow down the process with careful cleaning and care.
Avoid bleach and harsh chemicals
Use a dry microfibre cloth to remove smudges and light soiling and always wipe up spills immediately to minimize stains. If your white leather couch needs a deeper clean, whatever you do, DON’T be tempted to use bleach. The same goes for cleaners containing harsh chemicals as they can damage the leather and promote yellowing, which is what you want to avoid.
So what should you use? First, check the label and follow the manufacturer’s recommendations. Our COLOURLOCK Leather Shield Cleaning and Conditioning Kit has everything you need to clean and protect your furniture leather. Apply the cleaner to the sponge and then rub the leather surface gently. Remove any residue with a damp cloth.
Once the leather is dry, apply the COLOURLOCK Leather Shield to protect it against further soiling and discolouration from clothing, especially denim aand jeans. This also helps to prevent oxidation.
Cleaning faux leather
Restoring your white faux leather couch to its dazzling glory sounds like it should be an easier task than with the real thing. Well, yes and no. While fake leather can withstand harsher cleaners, we wouldn’t recommend it. It’s far better to be safe than sorry – there’s always the danger of damaging the material.
The COLOURLOCK Vinyl Kit is ideal for faux leather and plastic surfaces. As with the leather cleaner, you just need to apply with a sponge, allow to dry and then add the protector to guard against soiling and brittleness.
If you’re not sure…
You may want to consult a professional cleaner. Our experts would be happy to offer advise
We also stock a range of products that are ideal for cleaning and protecting white leather and faux leather furniture:
COLOURLOCK Mild Leather Cleaner for cleaning visible dirt and stains
COLOURLOCK Strong Leather Cleaner for cleaning heavier dirt and denim stains
COLOURLOCK Leather Cleaning Brush – handy tool to remove dirt stuck in the grain.
COLOURLOCK Leather Protector to maintain softness and flexibility of pigmented leather. (Not suitable for Faux leather)
COLOURLOCK Leather Shield to prevent dye migration and friction damage
The use of Leather in car seats and car upholstery dates back a long time. Skins and hides were transformed into leather using the vegetable tanning process without any surface colouration, which were made water repellant by the use of oils and grease just like saddles.
Leather surfaces were later coloured to make them more resistant to humidity and general soiling. One of the disadvantages of vegetable tanning is the amount of time the process takes (sometimes unto 18 months) With time, this process was largely replaced by chrome tanning which was deemed a more viable industrial process. To this day, most automotive manufacturers use chrome tanned leather apart from Audi, Volkswagen & Porsche who prefer synthetic tanned leather.
Automotive manufacturers carry out various tests on leather prior to approving and using them. Typical tests include the tear strength of leather, vapour permeability, squeaks and rattles test, flammability, soiling and smell. The smell of leather is probably the only test carried out without the use of a machine. Due to the rigorous testing processes, car leathers have become very uniform in appearance, almost always single coloured, smooth leather. These standard leathers are used with different combinations like Alcantara (synthetic material) is used on Porsche Steering Wheel and side panels. A combination of Nubuck and semi aniline leather is used in the Bugatti Veyron. Semi aniline leathers are softer to touch in comparison to the normal pigmented leathers as they have significantly less surface colouration but also extremely hard to maintain as water will penetrate through the surface. The exclusive Lamborghini Aventador LP 700-4 coupé was also made with semi-aniline leather interior. We recommend waterproofing these type of leathers to avoid permanent marks. Good care and prevention is the only way to retain the natural qualities of this type of leather.
Real Luxury: Bugatti type 46 Superprofile aka La Royal Petite in Real Ostrich Leather
Interesting: Bentley mainly use bull hides from Northern Europe as the farms there do not have barbwire fencing thus reducing the risk of natural marks and scars on the cattle.
How to clean and maintain car leather seats?
The following instructions would only apply to leather that is not open pore i.e water does not penetrate through the surface. Car Leather is one of the easiest forms of leather to clean and care for. Depending on the degree of soiling, we recommend cleaning car leather seats with one of our Mild or Strong Leather Cleaners supplied in a foam dispenser bottle and the Colourlock LeatherCleaning Brush. Foam dispenser ensures minimal use of the product and most importantly ensures the leather does not get too wet which causes it to get dry and crack with time.
New car leather seats and upholstery do not need any type of protection, feed or care products within the first 3 years. New car leather seats have a heavy layer of colour on them and any care product applied will not penetrate the surface. It does however need protection from surface colour damage caused due to friction. Entry and exit areas of driver seats are the most common areas for this type of damage but there might be other areas which get affected depending on the use of the car and the type of seats for e.g. bucket seats. Colourlock Leather Shield is an ideal product to prevent these type of damages. It also prevents against dye transfer onto leather, commonly found on lighter colour leather interiors.
Older leather, (cars older than 3 years) – The vapour permeability of leather is inherently high. However, the use of fats and greases during the manufacturing process improve water resistance of the leather. As the leather gets older and is used more, the pores become open (visible only under a microscope) and the leather becomes more receptive to care products. Colourlock Leather Protector has UV filters that protect from sun damage and antioxidants that keep the leather soft and prevent it from drying and ageing. It gives a matt finish.
Colourlock Elephant Leather Preserve is another care product we provide. It is a purely synthetic, acid free leather wax and an ideal treatment for antique leathers,glossy leathers in Classic Cars. It refreshes and waterproofs the leather and prevents mildew growth. Ideal treatment for old, dry and cracked Leather.
We hope that you find this information useful and would love to hear your comments and feedback.If there are any particular leather issues you want us to blog about in the future, please let us know.
Upcoming Blogs on Car leather: How to clean and maintain Alcantara car seats. How to restore extremely old, dry and hard leather seats. How to repair car leather seats, plastic and Vinyls using Colourlock Leather repair kit and leather dye
A common myth about Alcantara is that it’s made from the skin of the wild Alcantar from Peru. But this is entirely untrue. Alcantara is a synthetic, ultra micro fibre material that looks like suede. It is not a natural material like leather and is developed as a substitute to suede. It was originally developed in Japan in early 1970’s and today is used in furniture, clothes and cars (headliners, seating, dash trimming & steering wheels). It is more durable and resistant to stains compared to suede.It has excellent fire-retardant qualities which make it suitable for use in automotive. In the US, Alcantara is also known as ‘Ultrasuede’
It is important to vacuum Alcantara at regular intervals and occasionally wipe with a damp cloth. Normal dirt and stains can be cleaned using Colourlock Alcantara & Textile Cleaner with a damp cloth.
When working on a larger surface area wet the stained surface slightly with Alcantara & Textile Cleaner and immediately wipe gently with a terry cloth. Repeat if necessary.
Removing stains: Wet a sponge or a soft brush with some cleaner. Use a foam dispenser bottle for the product. Clean the stained area in a circular motion. Then wipe with a damp cloth. Don`t rub too hard! Do not make it too wet! When stains can’t be removed, ask a professional upholstery cleaner before damaging the material. If you happen to cause a fresh stain ensure you absorb the stain with a clean, absorbent terry cloth first. Viscose cloths are highly absorbent and perfect to absorb fresh stains. Ensure you do not rub or press down too hard. In case of big stains, it always helps to work from seam to seam in circular motion.
For greasy and waxy stains, use COLOURLOCK Leather Cleaning Spirit in addition to the Textile Cleaner. Work carefully. Test in a hidden area first. To reduce future soiling and stains, protect the surface with COLOURLOCK Waterproofing for Leather & Textiles. Heat should be kept away from Alcantara. For example, cigarette burns cause irreparable damages in Alcantara and must be avoided at all costs.It is also important to clean stains as quickly as possible.
Common problem with Alcantara – Alcantara is prone to pilling. Abrasion causes the fibres to develop into small spherical nodules. If the surface is not too damaged, it can be restored with the COLOURLOCK Leather Sanding Pad. Please watch our video on how to clean and restore alcantara https://www.colourlock.com/tip/furniture/alcantara.html
COLOURLOCK Alcantara & Textile Cleaner 250 ml: For normal cleaning. Sufficient for four seats and more.
COLOURLOCK Leather Cleaning Spirit 250 ml: To clean oily and greasy dirt and stains.
COLOURLOCK Waterproofing for Leather and Textiles 500 ml: To make the surface water repellent.
COLOURLOCK Leather Sanding Pad: In case of pilling.
In the late 19th and early 20th century, the increase in rail and sea travel caused an explosion in the popularity of fashionable luggage such as suitcases, dressing cases, and hat and shoe boxes – out of which the modern leather handbag developed.
Vintage leather handbags come in many different types of leather that are not so commonly found nowadays. As well as the unusual animal leathers, motifs on leather can be embossed. A motif is a repetitive design applied to the leather. Leather can also be painted, perforated, embroidered or decorated.
Here are some photos of vintage leather handbags from various animal species. Believe it or not they were highly fashionable at some point!
Although leather handbags are expensive items, cleaning, restoring and maintaining these leather bags is extremely affordable and easy with the use of the Colourlock range of leather care and repair products.
For regular cleaning and maintenance we have a choice of 3 kits:
For gloss finish we recommend Handbag Clean & Care Kit which contains a mild leather cleaner and leather restorer
For matt finish we recommend Colourlock Clean & Care Kit also with a mild leather cleaner and a leather protector
To protect from dye transfers on matt finish leathers we recommend the Leather Shield Kit which includes a mild leather cleaner and leather shield
Common Damages & Stains
Majority of the enquiries we receive from our customers are for water stains. It is easy to leave a bottle of water or any other drink inside the bag with the cap loose enough to leak. If the bag is aniline leather, suede or nubuck, it will leave a mark straight away when in contact with the leather. For these sensitive types of leathers we always recommend treatment with the Colourlock Leather Fixative. In the case of some pigmented leather, if the liquid is in contact with the bag for a prolong period, recolouring with Colourlock Leather Fresh will be required as the liquid would have had enough time to sink in and cause a permanent stain.
Another common issue is ink and biro marks caused by a ball point pen. These are not easy to clean and it will depend on the type of leather and how long ago the mark was caused. If the ink mark is fresh enough for removal, the Colourlock Dye and Ink Remover Pen is easy to apply. We will talk about this topic in more detail soon.
Colour damage caused by friction (denim is the usual culprit!), UV damage over time and regular wear can be refreshed and brought back to life with our leather colour restorer Colourlock Leather Fresh – a special leather dye we can mix to exactly match the colour of your bag!
To repair rips, tears and minor damages – email us photos so we can advise what products you should use and provide full instructions with videos. We can put together a leather repair kit for you to apply at home, but if you do not want the hassle of doing it yourself or want it done professionally, please contact us. We offer a full leather cleaning and leather restoration service. Prices start from £35 plus VAT.
In order to ensure you use the correct product, run a small test on your handbag. Rub a drop of water into a hidden area of the leather bag. If the water penetrates the surface it could be aniline, suede or nubuck leather. These type of leathers need special care and attention. Please contact us on 0203 793 9125 or email us on email@example.com so we can assist you further.
Water marks on open pore aniline leather are very difficult to remove. Any normal water based leather cleaner will only make the leather even wetter and make the stain worse.
With the Colourlock Leather Fixative it is possible to effectively remove water marks from aniline, suede and nubuck leather garments. The advantage of cleaning leather clothing is that, in most cases, the garment can be completely washed with the Colourlock Leather and Fur Wash Concentrate. This helps achieving an even result throughout the whole item, rather than focusing on a specific area.
The Colourlock Leather Fixative can be also used for sensitive aniline furniture, aniline bags and aniline shoes. For suede and nubuck shoes, we have the Colourlock Shoe Cleaner. Of course, always keeping in mind that each piece of leather can react differently to the same treatment. We cannot guarantee the full removal of water marks, however, we have achieved excellent results with this method as shown on the photographs below).
When it comes to Suede and Nubuck leather furniture, water marks are hard to remove, in fact, these can rarely be fully cleaned. However, after the treatment, significant improvements can be achieved.
Following the instructions for applying the Colourlock Leather Fixative is very important. You should always test the product first in a hidden area. Wearing gloves, apply the fixative with a soft cloth <link to product> from seam to seam ensuring an even application – make sure it is all fully wet. Please do not rub too hard as this might damage the leather. Let dry or use the cold setting on your hairdryer to speed up the process. This process can be repeated until the mark is no longer visible.
Once the leather has properly dried, it is important to protect it. We recommend using the Colourlock Aniline Cream to prevent new stains on new leather items. For older leather with a visible patina, the Colourlock Elephant Leather Preserver will be best.
For suede or nubuck furniture, once the area has fully dried, sand the surface with a Colourlock Leather Sanding Pad and apply Colourlock Aniline Protector and Colourlock Waterproofing to protect it from further damage.
Recently a customer brought us a Mulberry Piccadilly handbag in Oak Natural Leather with a water stain covering a big part of the bottom of the bag. She had put a bottle of water inside the bag but the cap wasn’t tightly closed and the water leaked inside the bag creating a very obvious mark on the outside. Mulberry doesn’t line these type of bags to show the leather inside and outside. The Mulberry Piccadilly bag is also left untreated by Mulberry which makes it more susceptive to staining and damages than treated leather bags.
The common recommendation for these type of damages would be to recolour the damaged area or even to recolour the entire bag. However, applying colours or Leather dye should always be used as a last resort when working on aniline leather as the feel and the grip of the leather is lost when colour is applied to it. Hence, our first and preferred method is to treat water marks on aniline leathers with Colourlock Leather Fixative.
Here is how the bag looked before the treatment when we took it to our workshop.
Step 1 : Fill a bucket with water and the Colourlock Leather Fixative in a ratio 1:10
Step 2 : Dip the entire bag into the solution and wipe stained areas lightly using Colourlock Leather Cleaning Brush at regular intervals. Leave it in the solution for roughly 1 hour 30 minutes.
Step 3 : Fill another bucket with Colourlock Leather & Fur Wash Concentrate and dilute with water in a ratio 1:8. The concentrate is a liquid detergent that cleans and helps remove dirt. It also contains oils that make sure the leather does not become hard. Leave it in the solution for a couple of hours and keep scrubbing lightly at regular intervals.
Step 4 : After a couple of hours, remove the bag from the solution and keep it in a cool dry place away from sunlight and heat to let it dry. Stuff the bag with an old towel to ensure it doesn’t lose its shape and absorbs excess water. During the drying process, spray Colourlock Aniline Protector at regular intervals to achieve a better result. This ensures the bag does not get dry and hard during the drying process and the leather remains soft and supple.
This is the result after the cleaning process. One very happy customer with a clean bag!
Here is a demonstration video of the leather handbag cleaning process.
This week we had a very exciting job. A customer needed repairs to be done to the interior of his classic 1959 Maserati Vignale 3500 GT Spyder. The Maserati 3500 GT was first produced in 1957 like the one featured on the British movie Cash On Demand, but it wasn’t until 1959 that Carrozzeria Vignale made the Spyder (convertible) version like the one we have been working on.
Initial inspection of the car showed the interiors had been completely neglected as is the case with most barn finds. The leather seats were dry, hard and with a lot of cracks which were spread all over the seats due to the extensive use for many years. The colour had faded and even a gentle wipe with some of our leather cleaner was removing colour away. But somehow these imperfections added to the value of the car and gave it its vintage look. The back seats however, hardly had any cracks or visible patina as they hadn’t been used so much. The challenge was to keep the old vintage look but to stabilise the leather at the same time and keep its original features.
Photos of the car interior when we first saw it coming soon…
To start with, we had to take out all the seats and dismantle a lot of the interior bits like the side panels from the doors. The leather was cleaned very gently using one of our leather brushes and Colourlock Mild Leather Cleaner. It was then treated with a mixture of Licker oil and warm water and left for an entire week! Licker Oil is water soluble and is ideal to treat any old hard leather prior to it being repaired or recoloured. If the leather did not need any repairs or re-colouring a similar treatment with Colourlock leather softener would have been the ideal choice. Mixing it with water ensures that not too much grease is applied as this would reduce the adhesion power of the leather fillers and the leather dye.
We then moved onto the other parts of the interior. Since, the back seats hadn’t been used as much as the front ones there was virtually no damage or no signs of wear. This looked odd when compared to the rest of the leather in the car as these two seats looked pretty much brand new. We therefore, used special leather solvent cleaners to remove the colour and create the old patina similar to the rest of the car to give it that unique vintage look.
The radio and door cards, trims and all other areas of the interior which had cracks, rips and tears had to be glued back together using Colourlock Leather Glue. Cracks in other areas were filled using Colourlock Leather Filler and then sanded down using one of our leather sanding pads. We then proceeded to create an exact grain of the same area to put it back onto the repaired area. This helped achieve an invisible repair.
A week later we switched our attention back to the two front seats. The mixture of Licker Oil and water had done its magic. The leather was now soft and ready to be worked on. After a quick dust down of all the surfaces, we degreased the seats using Colourlock Leather Cleaning Spirit. We then sanded the seats with a leather sanding pad to get a smooth surface. We then had to tackle the issue of lots of minor cracks which the customer wanted to be visible. His preference was to be able to see the cracks, however, leaving the cracks as they were and simply colouring on top would have given a very bad finish. This was the most challenging part of the job. We used Colourlock Neutral Binder which was applied using a sponge and dried straightaway with a heat gun. The neutral binder is a transparent liquid that when applied it sits in all the cracks and stabilises the leather. Whilst the cracks still remain visible, they do not feel scaly when you touch them. This treatment is ideal for classic car owners who want to keep the look but still want the leather re-enforced and stabilised. We then sanded the layer of neutral binder to get a smooth finish.
The next stage in the normal leather colouring process would have been to spray primer, then the colour followed by top coats to finish it off. However, with such old leather, these processes would have made it feel plastic like and hard. The old adage ‘less is more’ applied perfectly in this situation.
We therefore chose to spray a very thin layer of Colourlock Leather Fresh which is our DIY leather dye supplied individually and as part of DIY Leather repair kits. The Leather Fresh leather dye contains binding agents and top coats within the colour to make it easier for retail customers to apply themselves at home. The earlier sanding processes had taken some colour off but when we coloured we made sure we did not apply too much colour so the old vintage look was retained.This was followed by a layer of Colourlock Top Coat. Finally, a day later, the whole leather interior was protected using Colourlock Elephant Leather Preserve.
The customer was very happy with the result and so were we! A very challenging job with great results – even 007 would be proud to drive this beauty around!
With everyday use, it is common to get creases on leather seats and furniture usually caused by heavy objects placed on top for a long period. Their weight will put pressure on the leather and leave a mark. Sharp items can also leave marks. Another way of getting pressure marks in leather is from prolonged use of sitting areas which stretch the leather causing it to deform and bulge. Likewise, incorrectly stored leather garments can become wrinkled.
Removing pressure marks requires some time and a good old massage!! Yes, the best way to get rid of those pressure marks and wrinkles is to give your leather item a nice massage. With the help of a heat gun or hairdryer, heat the leather surface slightly (careful don’t burn it!). Once warm we can start the treatment – gently massage and pinch the damaged area in different directions for a couple of minutes trying to remove the bulge. It is important to cool the area quickly after this with a cold iron or any other cooling (dry) item you can find.
If you are working with a piece of furniture where you can access the underside of the leather it will be easier to stretch the leather by massaging it from behind.
The longer the pressure was applied for, the harder it will be to remove the mark as the leather fibres will be permanently deformed. There is no product that can be used to resolve this issue, and in most cases, it won’t be possible to make the marks completely disappear but great results can be achieved and the damage can be made almost invisible by applying the above method.
Sitting areas of cars and leather furniture are more likely to get creased and deformed with time. Deformations in seat areas cannot be removed if they are too deep. Although we can work on the damage and achieve improvements on it, the creases will return as we continue to use it as the leather will get stretched once again.
It is likely the foam or padding inside the seat itself would also have lost its shape. Certain padding can be taken out and replaced, but once the leather fibres are overstretched repeatedly, they will never go back to their original state. Think of a piece of paper you crumple into a ball and then try to smooth out again – the creases and wrinkles will stay visible no matter how hard you try to flatten it out.
When it comes to leather furniture, if after repeated heat and massage treatment the creases and marks are still visible, only a saddler or upholsterer will be able to fix such damages through upholstery work. Leather clothing can be more easily improved by stretching and heating it, but if this doesn’t work, washing or dry cleaning may solve the problem. Our Colourlock Leather and Fur Wash is ideal for this. Using this product, leather garments can be hand washed or machine washed. If you are worried that the garmetn might lose colour during the washing process, pre-treat it with Colourlock Leather Fixative.
Since we have applied heat during this process, it is important to make sure we treat the leather to keep its moisture. We would recommend to first clean the leather with Colourlock Mild Leather Cleaner. Once cleanded, apply the Colourlock Elephant Leather Preserve to give it a soft glossy finish and maintain its suppleness. If your leather is matt, use the Colourlock Leather Protector instead to help it stay supple.
Identifying the type of leather is very important before attempting to remove ballpoint pen and biro and marks as using the wrong leather cleaning products or method could make the damage worse. These are the different types of leather to consider when cleaning pen marks:
Pigmented leather – this is leather with a protective layer of paint on the surface. If you try to rub a drop of water it won’t penetrate into the leather surface. Pigmented leathers generally have a grained surface and satin finish.
Aniline leather – this is open pore and smooth leather. A drop of water will sink into the surface and darken the area.
Suede – is the backside of a smooth leather or both sides of spilt leather.
Nubuck – also known as split leather, this is the sanded grain side of a smooth leather. It has a very soft velvety feel.
PU / Bycast / Bicast leather – refers to split leather with a grained film of polyurethane on the surface. Usually shiny and plastic-like. If not sure, check with the manufacturer.
Biro marks on leather
We will go through how to remove strokes from ballpoint pens and biros from each type of leather indicated above.
Ballpoint pen and biro marks on pigmented leather
Ballpoint pen and biro strokes on furniture or car seats happen very often, but unfortunately, they are not always easy to remove. The more recent the pen mark is, the easier it will be to remove. When the ballpoint pen mark is older than three days, it is rarely possible to just clean and remove the mark, this will most likely need to be coloured. Be careful not to use the wrong product as this will often increase the damage.
Use the Ballpoint Pen & Biro Remover and test first in a hidden area and if possible create a mark if the area is not visible at all to see if it is easy to clean with no risk. Depending on the type of pen, it might lose more or less ink. In order to avoid spreading the ink further, stick some masking tape on top of the mark and remove it several times to remove any excess ink. Once this is done, we can start using the Colourlock Ballpoint Pen Remover by pressing it until the tip wet. Do small circular movements with the pen remover in a small area putting a bit of pressure. The liquid will soften the area and help dissolve the ink. you should remove any excess ink with a clean cloth to avoid creating new stains. If necessary, clean the Colourlock pen remover tip if too dirty, again to avoid contaminating other areas. The tip has been designed to be removable and turned the other way around, so both sides can be used. Repeat the cleaning process as many times as required to completely remove the marks. It might be necessary to increase the pressure.
In the case of older stains, it is very hard to get them removed without damaging the colour of the leather, they will also need to be recoloured. This is due to the fact that the ink has now penetrated too deep so a light clean and recolour won’t stop it from resurfacing with time even if the leather has been recoloured. It is therefore essential to clean as thoroughly as possible before recolouring.
Ballpoint pen and biro marks on aniline leather
Aniline leathers are very sensitive as they are open pore. Ballpoint pen and biro marks need to be removed by a leather expert as there is a high risk of increasing the damage if not done properly. Usually, the Colourlock Ball Point Pen Remover would only cause further stains in this type of leather, and Colourlock Leather Fresh can only be used to recolour one tone leather. It is very unusual to be able to repair damages to aniline and we strongly advise you consult with a specialist before attempting to do the repairs at home.
Ballpoint pen and biro marks on suede or nubuck
Ballpoint pen and biro marks cannot usually be removed from suede or nubuck leathers due to their velvety surface. You should always seek the help of a professional as the risk of increasing the damage is very high. Always test first in a hidden area and use masking tape to protect unaffected areas. You could also use a Colourlock Leather Sanding Pad working from seam to seam with extreme care to avoid damaging the surface of the leather. Using the Colourlock Ball Point Pen Remover would likely cause further stains. Colour repair is not possible with this type of leather.
Ballpoint pen and biro marks on PU or Bicast leather
PU leather or bicast leather is usually dark, so strokes from ballpoint pens and biros are not that visible. It is very easy to damage the foil surface on this type of leather when attempting to clean it. You should always test in a hidden area first without putting too much pressure. Colour repairs are only possible in the case of monochrome leather.
Ink Stains on Leather
Other than ballpoint pens, stains could be caused by different types of pens or inks. It is important to distinguish the type of ink as the cleaning process is different since this ink will penetrate the leather in a different way. We will once again go through each type of leather.
Ink marks on pigmented leather
The process is the same as described for ballpoint pen and biro strokes on pigmented leather. If the issue is just a stroke, the Colourlock Ballpoint Pen Remover will be the best tool to use, but if there are smeared lines or spots, you should use Colourlock GLD Solvent to dissolve the ink first, then recolour with Colourlock Leather Fresh dye. We recommend to protect the area with Colourlock Leather Shield after recolouring.
Ink marks on aniline leather
Aniline leather is very sensitive due to its open pores. You should seek the help of a professional before attempting to remove strokes and spots from this type of leather as there is a high risk of damaging it further.
Ink marks on suede or nubuck
Cleaning is not a good solution for this type of leathers, as the ink would have sunk into the fibres of the leather. The best option is to try to remove the ink marks using the Colourlock Leather Sanding Pad. If the marks are too deep, they cannot be removed. We recommend you seek professional advice.
Ink marks on PU or bicast Leather
The process is the same as described for pigmented leather.
To summarise, light ink stains from ballpoint pens or biro that are fresh (within three days aproximately) can be removed from pigmented leather with the Colourlock Ballpoint Pen Remover. If the stains are older or more spread than just a few strokes, you will need to use the Colourlock GLD Solvent (please follow the instructions for discolouration). If the colour has come off it might be necessary to also recolour using Colourlock Leather Fresh dye. If the ink stains have sunk deeper into the leather, only a professional can remove them from smooth leather. Ink marks on suede and nubuck leathers in most cases can’t be removed even by a professional.