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How to make your leather jacket softer

Leather jackets look great and they can bring your outfit together in all seasons. Unfortunately, leather tends to solidify over time, especially if you do not wear your jacket as often. Fortunately, this is perfectly normal, and there are many things you can do to fix it. In many cases, it only comes loose if you wear the jacket. If this does not work, try a few steps to soften and condition the jacket so that it feels completely new again!


[[[[Edit]Breaks in your jacket

  1. Wear your jacket to loosen it. This may sound too simple to be true, but it̵
    7;s not! Leather can become stiff if stored for a long time. Wearing the jacket regularly can be all you need to soften it up a bit, so take it out every now and then to break it in.[1]
    Make your leather jacket softer Step 1 version 2.jpg
    • Try to move a little while wearing your jacket. Bend your elbows, lift your arms, turn back and forth and make some other movements to soften the leather.
    • There is no set rule for how often you should wear your jacket to soften it. Every other week is a good goal.
  2. Curl and roll a little around the jacket. Roughening up your jacket a bit can also help. Try rolling it in a ball, throwing it around and bending it back and forth. This can train stiffness and make your jacket more comfortable to wear.[2]
    Make your leather jacket softer Step 2 version 2.jpg
    • Wear your jacket for a while after you have softened it so that it forms for your body.
  3. Soak your jacket to soften it. This may sound strange, but water helps soften leather. If you have to go out and it is raining lightly, use your jacket and let it get wet. If you live in a dry area or just do not feel like walking around in the rain, you can get similar results with a spray bottle. Spray the jacket lightly to moisten it. The leather softens and contours your body better.[3]
    Make your leather jacket softer Step 3 version 2.jpg
    • This is only for light rain, not for a heavy storm. If you go out in heavy rain, remember to dry the jacket before putting it on.
    • You can also condition your jacket by wearing it in all kinds of different weather, such as snow or sun. All these different conditions give your jacket a cool, worn look.[4]
  4. Move your arms around to help the wet coat shape to you. While the jacket is wet, this is the perfect time to break it in a bit. Move your arms, bend your elbows, turn around, wave and make other normal arm movements. When the jacket dries, it will naturally form around these movements and should be less stiff in the future.[5]
    Make your leather jacket softer Step 4 Version 2.jpg
  5. Keep the jacket on until it dries. Whether you took your jacket out in the rain or sprayed it with a spray bottle, put it on and leave it until it dries. This way, it will shape to your body while it is soft.[6]
    Make your leather jacket softer Step 5 version 2.jpg
    • If you are soaked in heavier rain than you expected, you can wipe the jacket a little so that you do not get too wet.
  6. Wipe the jacket with a dry cloth to get rid of excess water. Even if you wear the jacket until it is dry, there may still be a few drops of water hiding. While a little moisture is good for softening leather, it is bad to store your jacket while it is still wet. Always wipe the jacket with a dry cloth or towel to get rid of excess moisture before putting it away.[7]
    Make your leather jacket softer Step 6 version 2.jpg
    • You may always want to hang your jacket to dry completely before putting it away if you get soaked in the rain.
    • Always dry the jacket at room temperature. Do not use a heat source as a radiator, otherwise you may cause it to solidify again.

[[[[Edit]Conditioning of the jacket

  1. Clean the jacket before any conditioning treatments. No matter what conditioning you use, you do not want dust or dirt on the surface of the jacket.[8] You can wipe the jacket with water and a mild detergent or use a specialized leather cleaner. However, always clean the jacket before conditioning it.
    Make your leather jacket softer Step 7 Version 2.jpg
    • Remember to dry the jacket as well. Wipe it with a towel and hang it to dry at room temperature.
    • If you are not sure how to clean your jacket, it is best to take it to a dry cleaner to take care of.
  2. Apply a specialized leather conditioner to your jacket. Pour some conditioner on a clean cloth and rub conditioner into your jacket. Make sure you do not miss any places.[9] When you are done, hang it up to dry. After a good conditioning, it should be nice and soft again.
    Make your leather jacket softer Step 8.jpg
    • Instead of storing the jacket, you can also have it right after. This helps you to contour your shape while it is soft.
    • In general, a conditioning treatment will take about 6-12 months. You may need to use it again once or twice a year to keep your jacket soft.[10]
  3. Try castor oil for a cheaper solution. Instead of leather conditioner, castor oil can also work to soften leather. Pour some oil on a clean sponge and wipe it all over the jacket. Leave the jacket for a few hours and let the oil soak in and store it normally.[11]
    Make your leather jacket softer Step 9.jpg
    • You can get castor oil at most pharmacies.
    • If the jacket is still too stiff, you can do this treatment more than once.
  4. Rub Vaseline on the jacket for another option. This can also help soften your leather jacket. Rub a small amount of Vaseline on the jacket and let it soak in for a few hours. When you are done, you can store the jacket normally.[12]
    Make your leather jacket softer Step 10.jpg
    • If there is still jelly left on the jacket, you can wipe it off before putting it away.

[[[[Edit]Things you need

[[[[Edit]Break in your jacket

  • Water
  • Spritz bottle
  • Hanger

[[[[Edit]Conditioning of the jacket

  • Clean cloth
  • Leather conditioner
  • castor oil
  • Vaseline


  • Keep your jacket away from heat. Heat can shrink your jacket and make it stiff.[13]
  • Always hang your jacket from a wide, wide hanger. Thin hangers can stretch the material.
  • Never fold the jacket when storing it. The wrinkles can be permanent.
  • Avoid covering your jacket with plastic. While you may think that you are protecting your jacket with a plastic cover, plastic dries out leather, so your jacket will be stiff and brittle the next time you take it out. If you want to protect your jacket, cover it with linen or cotton instead.[14]
  • If you do not like stiff leather jackets, you can also get a softer type of leather. Lambskin, for example, is softer and does not solidify as much.[15]


  • If you use any form of conditioner, always test it on the leather before rubbing it all over the jacket. Dip a little in a small, hidden place and leave it there for 24 hours. Make sure that the leather is not discolored, then you can use conditioner.[16]
  • Some websites recommend using coconut oil as a conditioner, but the results are mixed. Manufacturers warn that this can leave a sticky or slippery film on the leather. You probably want to skip this one.

[[[[Edit]Related wikiHows

  • Make leather
  • Take care of a leather jacket
  • Clean a leather jacket


  1. https://www.bustle.com/p/how-to-break-in-a-leather-jacket-in-time-for-fall-according-to-experts-78309
  2. https://www.artofmanliness.com/articles/tips-for-breaking-in-a-leather-jacket-the-schott-nyc-jacket-giveaway/
  3. https://www.whowhatwear.com/how-to-wear-in-leather-jacket-diy-hack
  4. https://www.bustle.com/p/how-to-break-in-a-leather-jacket-in-time-for-fall-according-to-experts-78309
  5. https://www.whowhatwear.com/how-to-wear-in-leather-jacket-diy-hack
  6. https://www.whowhatwear.com/how-to-wear-in-leather-jacket-diy-hack
  7. https://leather-toolkits.com/blog/how-to-soften-leather/
  8. https://www.gq-magazine.co.uk/article/care-for-a-leather-jacket
  9. https://www.racked.com/2016/10/7/13150428/leather-jacket-clean-protect
  10. https://www.bustle.com/p/how-to-break-in-a-leather-jacket-in-time-for-fall-according-to-experts-78309
  11. https://leather-toolkits.com/blog/how-to-soften-leather/
  12. https://leather-toolkits.com/blog/how-to-soften-leather/
  13. https://www.bustle.com/p/how-to-break-in-a-leather-jacket-in-time-for-fall-according-to-experts-78309
  14. https://leather-toolkits.com/blog/how-to-soften-leather/
  15. https://www.bustle.com/p/how-to-break-in-a-leather-jacket-in-time-for-fall-according-to-experts-78309
  16. https://leather-toolkits.com/blog/how-to-soften-leather/

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