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Can Water Damaged Suede Be Fixed?



Water damaged suede CAN be fixed in many cases.

More info: Although suede is one of the more easily damaged materials in fashion, the short answer is yes, water damage suede can be fixed. It is always best to take damaged suede in to a professional to clean; however, there are things you can try at home that may help.

Cleaning Soaked Suede

If your suede shoes or clothing has gotten wet, use an absorbent towel to immediately blot as much water from your suede garments as soon as possible. Once all the water has been absorbed, let the clothing dry at room temperature. Exercise patience and do not apply any additional heat. If the garment is a hat or soft shoe, stuff it with absorbent paper so that it keeps its shape as it dries.

Steps to Cleaning Suede at Home

  • To bring up the nap of the garment, rub the surface with a clean bath towel.
  • Use a pencil eraser to remove any stains that are dry. If stains are still wet, blot them out by placing a paper towel on and then and putting a weight on top towel. Exercise patience here too and never use a chemical stain remover.
  • You may also rub off stains with a damp towel and white vinegar. After each application of vinegar, allow the leather to dry. Though the garment may smell of vinegar for a while, it will eventually go away.  Test an inconspicuous spot first to ensure that this cleaning attempt will not damage your suede further.
  • If there are dirt and scuffmarks that evade your efforts still, gently try to lift them off with a fingernail file. The secret here is still patience. Be gentle.
  • Once you have cleared the way for your suede brush, gently brush the garment to bring back some of its luster.




Cobb, Linda. The queen of clean: clean like the queen. New York: Pocket Books, 2004. Print.

Bredenberg, Jeff. 2,001 amazing cleaning secrets. London: Reader’s Digest, 2004. Print.

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