How do get oily stains from hair/body oils out of a leather sofa?

dark brown leather oversized sofa in great condition - just a few darker areas from where people have sat over the past few years. Would love an easy for sure remedy for this! Cannot find anything anywhere!

  16 answers
  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Dec 15, 2021

    Hey Meg;

    Here you go, step by step:

    Step 1

    Pour cornstarch over the greasy head stain on the leather couch. Use enough cornstarch to completely cover the stain.

    Step 2

    Leave the cornstarch on the sofa overnight to absorb the grease that has soaked into the leather. Brush the cornstarch off the next morning and discard in the trash.

    Step 3

    Mix a mild leather or saddle soap with warm water in a bucket. Follow the manufacturer's directions for mixing proportions.

    Step 4

    Wet a clean cloth with the mild soap solution. Squeeze the cloth to remove as much excess moisture as possible.

    Step 5

    Wash the surface of the leather sofa to remove any remaining oil stain. Dampen another cloth with water and wipe the leather to rinse it.

    Step 6

    Dry the sofa's surface with a clean cloth. Allow the leather to air dry completely.


  • Cheryl A Cheryl A on Dec 15, 2021

    here is info for you Meg and we do research the questions to find the best and most honest answers for everyone

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Dec 15, 2021

    Try shampoo for oily hair. I've used it with great success on clothes.

  • William William on Dec 15, 2021

    Saddle soap to clean and leather conditioner to leave it soft and supple.

  • I've read that a paste made with Cream of Tartar works. You can leave it on for 20-30 minutes or let it dry and then wipe it off.

  • Janice Janice on Dec 15, 2021

    The first thing I would do is to dip a clean soft cloth into a mixture of a small amount of Dawn dishwashing soap and distilled water and testing on a small area of the sofa. Rinse with a second cloth dipped in distilled water and dry with a third soft cloth. See if this helped remove the oil. If this doesn't work well, then perhaps go on to try the other suggestions. Use the distilled water rather than tap water so as not to introduce minerals, etc. onto your leather from your tap water.

  • Dee Dee on Dec 15, 2021

    Apply some baking soda to a damp cloth and dab it on the stained area, leave it for a few hours then dust it off with a clean cloth. Baking soda should absorb the oil and leave your sofa looking as good as new.

  • Michelle Leslie Michelle Leslie on Dec 16, 2021

    Hi Meg, you can try using baby powder/talcum. It absorbs oil and pulls it out of the leather. Just sprinkle some powder on the stained area, press it gently into the surface, and leave overnight. Dust off.

  • Michelle Leslie Michelle Leslie on Dec 16, 2021

    Hi Meg, you can try baby powder/talcum or cornstarch. It absorbs oil and pulls it out of the leather. Just sprinkle some powder on the stains, press it gently into the area and let it sit overnight. Dust off. If the stains are really tough saddle soap should do the trick.

  • Sharon Sharon on Dec 16, 2021

    This is the stuff I use on a few of my clients with leather sofas and recliners.... make them look like new....

  • This will show you how to remove oil stains from a leather surface:

  • I used to work at Pottery Barn and we sold a lot of leather chairs, and many people had this issue. Honestly, it's not easy to get those stains out. The best success stories were from people who used a conditioner to darken the entire piece instead.

  • This will help you get the oils out:

  • Annie Annie on Dec 21, 2021

    There are several good products on the market just for this. Heres a vid that will get you started

    How to Fix Faded Leather, Dried, Scratched, Worn Leather - YouTube

  • In removing grease stains, just simply sprinkle baking soda onto the stain and allow it to sit for a couple of hours to overnight for the powder to absorb the grease. Wipe it away with a dry cloth. Just utilize a normal cleaning process outlined above using a damp cloth, mild cleaning solution, and buff dry.