How to Care for Your Chanel Bag

How to Care for Your Chanel Bag

A Chanel bag is a timeless classic and a true investment piece, but how do you take care of your investment?

Chanel retail values are always increasing and keeping your handbag in excellent condition will ensure it increases in value and stays just as perfect for years to come. Every Chanel leather and textile has different benefits with varying care and cleaning protocols, so lets discuss the recommended care.  


Overall Notes About Chanel Handbag Care

1. Clean Your Bag Regularly

Regular cleaning is essential to keep your bag in good condition. Use a soft, dry microfiber cloth to remove dust and dirt from the surface of the bag. Avoid using water or any cleaning products, as they can damage the leather. One exception for certain leathers are baby wipes with no additives. 

2. Condition the Leather

Leather can dry out over time and lose its natural oils, causing it to crack and fade. To prevent this, use a high-end leather conditioner to moisturize and nourish the leather. We recommend Meltonian All Purpose Cleaner or Collonil 1909 Neutral Leather Cream. Apply the conditioner with a microfiber cloth and rub it in gently, following the instructions on the product.

3. Protect the Leather

Leather is susceptible to damage from water, sunlight, and heat. To protect your Chanel bag, avoid exposing it to direct sunlight, heat, or extreme temperatures. 

4. Store Your Bag Properly

When you're not using your Chanel bag, store it in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. Use a dust bag or a soft cloth to protect it from dust and moisture. Avoid storing it in a plastic bag, as this can cause the leather to dry out.

5. Avoid Overloading Your Bag

Leather bags and even fabric bags can stretch and lose their shape if they are overloaded or used too often. Avoid carrying heavy items that can strain the handles or straps of your bag. 

6. Get Professional Cleaning and Repairs

If your Chanel bag is in need of a professional cleaning or repair, it is best to take it to a reputable specialist. They will have the necessary skills and expertise to restore your bag to its former glory without causing any further damage.

We recommend Leather Spa, Leather Surgeons or Rago Brothers.

Now lets discuss specific care instructions for Chanel's most popular leathers and materials. 


Chanel Signature Leathers

From Most Delicate to Durable

Comparison of Chanel Lambskin Leather, Chanel Calfskin Leather and Chanel Caviar Leather

1. Chanel's most delicate signature leather is their lambskin. Known for being smooth and supple, it provides a classic look, but takes a little extra attention and care. It is more prone to scratching and discoloration, but when handled carefully, the lambskin will form a beautiful patina over time. Many people choose vintage lambskin for its overall patina.

2. Calfskin fits into the midrange of durability for Chanel signature leathers. Chanel has many finishes that they use on their calfskin, such as an aged finish on the Reissue Flap bags or a glazed calfskin for a shinier finish. It is thicker than lambskin and therefore more durable. 

3. Chanel Caviar leather is made from pebbled calfskin, which is one of the most durable leathers Chanel uses. The embossing used to create the pebbling protects from and conceals damage and is best for bags that will see a lot of use.

It is important to note that generally the thicker the leather feels, the more durable it is.

All Chanel leathers can be cleaned with a microfiber cloth to remove dust or anything sitting on the surface that may create discoloration. A high-end leather conditioner can also be used on all of the signature Chanel leathers.We recommend Meltonian All Purpose Cleaner or Collonil 1909 Neural Leather CreamGenerally a baby wipe without additives is also a safe choice for cleaning leather. It is always important to create a spot test just to be certain before cleaning your bag. We recommend conditioning a leather bag once a year. 

Chanel Delicate Leathers

Chanel uses many more leathers beyond their signature leathers listed above. Some that may take extra care and attention are most commonly patent leather and suede.

For suede care we advise utilizing a suede brush, which can help to remove discoloration. As always, do a spot test first. It is important to avoid rubbing your suede bag against dark clothing and keeping it away from moisture and cosmetics.

As for patent leather, a microfiber cloth can be used to clean the surface of the bag. Storage is very important for patent leather, as color transfer can occur from another item that is leaning against your bag. Sunlight can also yellow and discolor patent leather, so storage in a cool dark area is also helpful for longevity. It is also recommended to store all chain straps inside the bag, as these can leave indentations in the patent leather.

Both of these leathers can be sent to a handbag spa for specialized attention. We recommend Leather SpaLeather Surgeons or Rago Brothers.

Chanel Textiles

Chanel Fabrics including Denim, Cotton and Satin

Although many iconic Chanel bags are crafted from leathers listed above, those same bags are often made in fabrics like tweed, brocade, jersey and canvas.

Utilizing a textile brush can modify pilling or inconsistencies in fabric texture. All fabrics react slightly differently, so testing in an area like the back or inside flap is advised. All fabrics should be protected from rubbing against dark clothing and should be kept away from moisture and cosmetics.

Fabrics can be sent to a handbag spa for specialized attention. We recommend Leather SpaLeather Surgeons or Rago Brothers.

Chanel Exotics

Chanel Exotic Leathers including Python, Stringray and Crocodile

Chanel discontinued use of exotics in 2018 making them highly desirable on the resale market. From stingray to python, they vary in levels of delicateness, but all require some special attention. Python is generally the most sensitive, as discoloration can occur simply from oils on the palm of your hand. Additionally, scales can lift and catch on clothing if too much drying occurs.

All exotics benefit from being cleaned by a microfiber cloth, however the safest route for exotics is utilizing a handbag spa to protect your investment. We recommend Leather SpaLeather Surgeons or Rago Brothers.

Now that you know a little bit about Chanel's most popular leather and textiles and how to clean them, we wish you happy Chanel shopping at Handbag Social Club!





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