wristwatch with leather bracelet
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A leather watch band is in direct contact with the skin on a daily basis, and the sweat, body oils, dead skin cells and dust can accumulate on the leather. Not only will this dull the look of the leather, it can make the watch band begin to smell and may even break down the leather itself. Cleaning a leather watch band carefully and with the right methods is essential in preserving the integrity of the leather while still getting rid of the dirt and grime.

Wipe the leather band with a dry cotton cloth. This removes any surface dust and dirt from the leather and prevents scratching during the wet cleaning process.

Moisten another cotton cloth with lukewarm water. Add one to two drops of moisturizing liquid hand soap to the rag. Rub the fabric together to create suds.

Wipe the watch band gently in a circular motion with the soapy rag. Clean both sides of the band. Use a clean, damp cotton cloth to wipe over the leather again to remove the soap residue.

Dry the leather thoroughly with a clean cotton cloth. Lay the watch in a well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight to dry further.

Apply leather conditioner to the watch band once it is dry. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for using the leather conditioner, as this may vary among brands.


If your watch band is made of unfinished leather, use saddle soap rather than hand soap to clean it.

Wipe the watch band with a dry cloth when you take it off for the day. This helps to keep the buildup of perspiration and dust to a minimum.


Avoid using harsh chemicals or cleaners on a leather watch band.