At this time of year the chamois leather (pronounced “Shammy”) is an extremely popular purchase either as as gift or for your own use. But having used your chamois how do you then go about cleaning, caring for and storing your leather?
Popular belief is that a “shammy leather” should be stored damp in a sealed container to keep it soft. Unfortunately for many that choose to do this they quickly find that when they next come to use it, large holes have appeared or it has fallen to bits completely. This is because real chamois leather is a natural substance usually made of sheep or lamb skin and as such will rot if not kept and stored in the right way. Below I advise how best to care for and store your chamois leather.
So how do you go about caring for your chamois leather?
After use rinse your leather by hand in warm soapy water. Do not use dish-washing detergent as this will remove the oils from within the chamois. Instead use natural soap – a bar of pure soap that you would wash your hands with will be ideal.
Once the dirt is cleaned out of the chamois then rinse again in clean warm water and re-lather some soap back into the leather – this will help keep it soft.
Next gently squeeze out the excess water, stretch out and hang up to dry naturally – but not in bright direct sunlight as you do not want it to dry too quickly.
Once completely dry your chamois leather can be folded or rolled and stored in a dry container, but only when completely dry.
Next time you come to use it, first rinse it again in warm water to soften it and remove the soap that was lathered into it before it was dried and stored.