How to Care for Cowhide Furniture?

May 28, 2024

close up of a hide bench seat for foot of bed bench

Hide furniture is relatively easy to clean, as it is naturally water-resistant and stain repellent.  Of course the odd spillage or accident can and will happen, so we have pulled together a quick guide on how to clean and care for your hide furniture. 

The very best advice we can offer is to act as quickly as possible. 

The longer an item of food, or a spilt liquid, is left on the hide, the more risk that it may soak into the hide or leave it marked. Always act quickly to remove all stains.

Our guide below explains how to treat different stains on your hide bench or ottoman. We hand-select each hide for our hair on hide ottomans and benches to ensure not only that the pattern on each hide is unique, but also that the hide has natural variation so that any accidental mark or stain will blend in. 

Food and Other Solid Stains

If an item of food or any other solid substance has been dropped or spilt on your hide bench or ottoman, and it is capable of being scrapped off, then we recommend using a blunt knife (like a butter knife) and gently scraping the bulk of the food or solid substance off the hide. Always work in the direction of the hair on the hide. Be careful to life the food up and off the hide, rather than smudging it across the hide and potentially creating a bigger stain.

Liquid Stains or Marks

Acting quickly, using kitchen paper towels or a light colored cloth, gently dab the area on the hide where the liquid has spill to try to soak up as much of the liquid as possible. Dab in the direction of the hair. Do not rub the hide and do not soak the area with water as this can create a water mark. 

If, once you have removed the excess liquid, you notice that there is a residual mark, then the next step may be required.

Stubborn Liquid Stains

For set in stains (or those which you don't notice straight away) we recommend adding a couple of small drops of eco-friendly liquid soap or detergent to a small bowl of warm water, mix and then lightly dip a cloth into the bowl, squeezing out the excess. Taking the damp cloth, gently dab the area to remove the stain. Take your time and be patient as it is important not to rub the hide or saturate the stained area with water (as this can create a water mark). 

The final step, if needed, is to gently dab the cowhide with a fresh, dry cloth to soak up any remaining liquid.

Please note: do not use any chemicals on the hide furniture, as it can damage the hide by causing it to dry out.