Is White Vinegar Good For Cleaning Suede?

Is White Vinegar Good For Cleaning Suede?

Suede leather is a popular material for clothing and shoes but it can be difficult to clean. There are many home remedies that people use to try to get rid of stains from their suede goods, but some of them may not work as well as you would hope.

In this article, I will talk about whether white vinegar is good for cleaning suede and what other methods might work better. But first, let me hit the nail on the head before I address any other issue.

Is white vinegar good for cleaning suede? White vinegar is an awesome home remedy for dealing with all sorts of cleaning issues from mud stains, oil and grease stains, salt, etc. White vinegar is a natural disinfectant and it can also get rid of any smells on suede leather items.

So, if you are looking for a versatile and affordable cleaning solution, white vinegar is your best bet.

However, it is worth mentioning that you should test the white vinegar on an inconspicuous area of the suede before you start cleaning the entire piece. This is because vinegar can cause some color changes on light-colored suede items.

If you are not comfortable using white vinegar, or if it doesn’t work on the suede item that you are trying to clean, there are a few other methods you can try.

One popular method is using a sponge and some dishwashing liquid. Just put a small amount of the liquid on the sponge, and gently dab at the stain. Be sure to rinse the area well afterward.

Other alternatives to cleaning suede leather may include baking soda, baby wipes, rubbing alcohol, etc.

The bottom line is that as long as you take the proper precautions when cleaning suede leather items with any of these methods, you should be able to get the job done without any problems.

Let’s now get into the details of cleaning suede leather with white vinegar. Keep reading to find out more.

The Nature Of Suede Leather

It is important to understand the nature of suede as a material so that you can better choose a cleaning method that works best. Suede is made from the underside of animal skin.

This is why suede has a nap or velvety surface. This velvety feel or nap on the surface of suede, unlike the smooth or shiny feel of regular leather, makes suede leather material very porous and allows it to soak up liquids making it susceptible to stains.

Not only is suede susceptible to stains but also, suede leather tends to be very sensitive to cleaners and stain removers.

This means that it is very important to treat suede leather carefully so you do not damage the material.

This may often include not using harsh chemicals or cleaning solutions. So now, this begs the question, is white vinegar harsh as far as cleaning solutions for suede is concerned?

Before I answer this question, let’s take a look at what white vinegar is made of and how it is used.

What Is White Vinegar Made Of?

White vinegar is a clear and colorless liquid with a sour taste and smell, which is made by the fermentation of ethanol.

These ingredients are quite simple and many would consider them nontoxic.

There are actually some quite interesting uses of white vinegar; it is used in cooking, cleaning, and home remedies.

As far as cleaning goes, white vinegar contains active cleaning agents that can be used to remove soap scum from different kinds of surfaces like glass, tile, bathroom fixtures, etc.

So is it a safe alternative to use on suede leather? Let’s talk about the pros and cons of using white vinegar to clean suede.

The Pros Of Using White Vinegar To Clean Suede

1. White Vinegar Is Great For Cleaning Tough Stain On Suede

One of the benefits of using white vinegar to clean suede is that it can be used on tough stains.

White vinegar works by breaking down the stain-causing substances which allow for easier removal of the stain.

So whether it is mud, oil, or another tough stain, white vinegar has the power to remove it from your faux leather without causing any damage.

It should be noted that vinegar is best used on dark stains because it may lighten the color of lighter suede material in high concentrations.

All in all, white vinegar is one of the best home remedies for removing stubborn stains from your suede leather items.

2. White Vinegar Is Non-Toxic

Most of our suede leather items will one way or another come into contact with our skin. So it is important to always use care products that are non-toxic and will not cause any adverse reactions.

White vinegar is a non-toxic product that is safe to use on your suede items that come into contact with your skin.

White vinegar has anti-bacterial properties that can help to keep your suede clean and free from any bacteria or germs.

So if you are looking for a nontoxic cleaning solution for your suede, white vinegar is a great option to consider.

3. White Vinegar Is An Eco-Friendly Cleaning Agent

Vinegar is a natural cleaning agent that does not require any special use or disposal. This makes it an eco-friendly alternative to other harsh chemical cleaners.

When you use vinegar to clean your suede, you are not only doing a great job at cleaning the material but you are also being environmentally responsible.

We all know how vital it has become to be more environmentally conscious, so using a natural and eco-friendly cleaning agent like white vinegar is definitely something to consider.

4. White Vinegar Can Be Used To Removed Odors From Suede

Smells and odors on suede leather goods are inevitable, but they don’t have to stay there.

White vinegar can be used to remove any unwanted smells or odors from your suede leather.

All you have to do is mix white vinegar with water in a 50:50 ratio and apply it to the suede using a cloth and whatever nasty smells or odor you had on the suede will be gone.

So if you are looking for a way to get rid of any bad smells on your suede items in the most natural and chemical-free way, vinegar is the way to go.

5. White Vinegar Is Inexpensive

Compared to other commercial cleaning agents, white vinegar is very inexpensive. This makes it an affordable option for those who are looking for a more cost-effective solution to cleaning their suede.

With white vinegar, you don’t have to worry about breaking the bank or spending too much money on a cleaning product that you will never use again.

So if cost is one of your main concerns when it comes to finding the right suede leather cleaner, white vinegar is an excellent option.

6. White Vinegar Is A Natural Cleaning Agent

As we mentioned earlier, white vinegar is a natural cleaning agent. This means that it does not contain any harsh chemicals or toxins that can be harmful to your suede leather.

When you use white vinegar to clean your suede, you can trust that you are using a product that is safe for you and your suede.

So if you are looking for a chemical-free cleaning solution, white vinegar is definitely the way to go.

So there you have it! Six reasons why white vinegar should be your go-to cleaning agent for your suede leather items. Not only is it affordable, but it is also non-toxic, eco-friendly, and can remove any unwanted smells or odors.

But are there any downsides to cleaning suede leather with white vinegar? Let’s find out!

The Cons Of Using White Vinegar To Clean Suede

While there are not many downsides to using white vinegar to clean your suede leather items, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

The Smell Of White Vinegar Can Be Overpowering

When you are first starting out with cleaning your suede using white vinegar, there is a good chance that the smell will be overwhelming for you.

The smell of white vinegar is very powerful and can be overwhelming at first, but after you get used to it the smell should dissipate.

White Vinegar Leaves Suede Wet

If you would like to dry clean your suede leather items then using white vinegar is not the best option.

White vinegar will leave your suede leather wet and it will take a while for it to dry. So if you are looking for a quick and easy way to clean your suede without getting them wet, then white vinegar is not the best solution.

How To Use White Vinegar To Clean Suede Leather

Now that you know more about why white vinegar is such a great suede cleaning agent, let’s take a look at how we can use it in our own home.

Things Needed:

  • White vinegar
  • Water
  • Microfiber Cloth
  • Spray Bottle
  • Old Toothbrush or Sponge Brush


Step 1:

  • Start by mixing 2 parts water to 1 part white vinegar into a spray bottle.

Step 2:

  • Spritz a generous amount of the mixture onto your suede. Ensure that you create an even coating over the entire surface.

Step 3:

  • Leave the vinegar mixture on your suede for a few seconds and start to use an old toothbrush or sponge brush to gently rub the suede.
  • Be as gently as possible and make sure not get the suede too wet.
  • Repeat steps two and three until the suede is clean and void of the stains you were trying to remove.

Step 4:

  • Once your suede is completely clean, make sure you dry off your suede with a microfiber cloth to prevent any water spots from forming.
  • After that, leave the suede leather item to air-dry.

There you have it! Your very own guide on how to clean your suede leather items using white vinegar.

Tips On Using White Vinegar To Clean Suede

But we wrap things up, let’s take a look at some tips on how to get the most out of your white vinegar suede cleaning experience.

Do Not Mix White Vinegar With Other Cleaning Agents

When it comes to cleaning suede leather with white vinegar, it is best to stick with just one cleaner.

Mixing white vinegar with other cleaning agents like rubbing alcohol or window cleaners can result in unwanted chemical reactions that could damage your suede.

You can simply mix the white vinegar with distilled water to get a cleaning solution that is safe for suede leather.

Use Only White Distilled Vinegar

White distilled vinegar is the only type of vinegar that you should be using when cleaning suede.

Using other types of vinegar like brown rice, apple cider or red wine can damage your suede leather item simply because suede leather, although durable, is very porous.

So make sure to only use white distilled vinegar when following these cleaning steps.

Do Not Get Your Suede Soaking Wet When Cleaning With Vinegar

I know I mentioned this earlier but it is important to reiterate that you should keep your suede as dry as possible when cleaning with vinegar.

Suede is a very porous material and if it gets too wet, the water can get trapped in the suede and cause mould or discoloration to the surface.

So just be careful while cleaning your suede leather.

Be Gentle With Your Suede

When cleaning suede with white vinegar, it is important to be gentle. Suede is a very delicate material and if you scrub too hard or rub it against something, you can cause irreparable damage to the nap of your suede leather item.

So with all the cleaning steps, just be gentle and you should be able to remove any unwanted stains from your suede leather with very light gentle scrubs.

Final Thoughts

I hope that this article has provided you with all the information you need on how to use white vinegar to clean suede.

White vinegar is a great natural cleaner that is safe to use on a suede leather and can remove most unwanted stains and dirt.

Just be sure to follow the tips I have provided and you should be able to clean even the dirtiest suede items.

So I end my blog post and I hope that you enjoyed reading it.

Do not forget to check out my other blog posts if you enjoyed this one! Thank you again for reading and have a great day. 🙂


Hi! I’m Kwabena, the owner and founder of Favored Leather. I’m a huge Leathercraft enthusiast and I’ve been that for almost 13 years now. I'm excited to share my experiences and all the new stuff I learn each day about leather craft, leather cleaning & care, and everything in-between!

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