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windsorsean Level 1 (0 points)
I purchased the red leather smart cover with my iPad 2. Within the first day I somehow got two dark marks on the case, probably from greasy food. So far my attempts to clean it have only made it worse.

Is there a recommended way for cleaning the leather cover, and would it benefit from a leather protector spray like you would put on shoes?

Thanks for any suggestions!

iPad 2, iOS 4
  • Dadof2Girls Level 3 (545 points)
    Use a high quality leather cleaner on a soft cloth. I use Lexol. Don't rub hard. Gentle circles or with the grain in the leather if you can see it. The dye in the leather will bleed off on the cloth a little so don't be surprised. It states that on the Apple store page selling the Smart Covers and bore itself out when I cleaned mine. Looks great though.
  • ClayG Level 4 (1,415 points)
    Funny. Exactly the same thing happened with my red leather Smart Cover. Within just a couple of hours of buying it, I got a couple of marks on it. I tried to clean it and just made it worse, with two big dark marks. I really want to clean it up, but I'm afraid to just make it worse.
  • Dadof2Girls Level 3 (545 points)
    Unfortunately, with the leather, this seems to be the case. Red would be the worst, tan, and white, then blue, then black. That's why I went with black. Dark smudges, stains don't show as easily. Someone type A, pragmatic, OCAD (obsessive, compulsive Apple disorder) like me would go nuts with red.

    Message was edited by: Dadof2Girls
  • AzurePhoenix Level 1 (0 points)
    After doing some research on forums for designer hand-bags... The two leading contenders for a color safe leather protector were Wilson's Leather TLC and Apple (different company) Leather Care. We don't have a Wilson's retail location in Knoxville but I was able to find a small bottle of the Apple product in a luggage\gift store in the mall for $3.
    So far I've applied it 5 times (every other day) to my red leather Smart Cover with no ill effects. For the first couple applications the cloth I was using (bit of old t-shirt) picked up some of the red stain (as expected), but hasn't affected the color of the cover. The amount of stain transfer has dropped off dramatically and after the 3rd application I barely noticed any.
    Now that I've gotten a good base on with the every other day treatments, I'm planning to drop back to every few weeks just to keep it well protected.
  • igmackenzie Level 4 (2,285 points)
    Same reason I went with black too!
  • windsorsean Level 1 (0 points)
    I tried Tana leather cleaning lotion and it did help a little, the stains aren't as dark as before but still noticeable. Although now I have to clean the entire cover because the spot I cleaned is now a slightly different shade than the rest. I've pretty much given up on the cover looking good again, will likely buy a black one. Very annoyed!
  • Dadof2Girls Level 3 (545 points)
    Yep. Just stinks doesn't it? Depending on what caused the stain, you can clean it all you want. Once the leather gets to the point you are talking, short of re-staining it, there is nothing that will make it better completely better. Leaving it alone, actually might help. Every time you clean it, you introduce the cleaner / conditioner elements which are absorbed by the leather and can actually make the stain look darker. I'd let it sit for a few days and "dry" out and then look it over.
  • ClayG Level 4 (1,415 points)
    Has anyone had luck cleaning one of these leather smart covers up? I'm pretty upset that I spent more than $70 (including tax) and it looked terrible within one hour of opening it.
  • windsorsean Level 1 (0 points)
    Actually I did have some luck with a regular leather cleaning cream. I cleaned the entire cover and gave it 24 hours to dry. Afterwards it was noticeably improved, dark marks being much less visible. Still not perfect, so I figure I'll try the cleaner again.
  • Dadof2Girls Level 3 (545 points)
    Sure, but reread my post before yours. You'll only improve it so much and over cleaning can actually make it worse!
  • ClayG Level 4 (1,415 points)
    What leather cleaner did you use?
  • windsorsean Level 1 (0 points)
    Good point, maybe I'll just leave well enough alone.

    ClayG, I used Tana leather cleaning lotion for all colours.
  • ClayG Level 4 (1,415 points)
    Well, I tried cleaning my red leather cover with Lexol today, and it now looks absolutely horrible. it looks like it took a lot of the dye off, and looks washed out in that area. I'm holding out hope that it just isn't completely dry yet, but I think I ruined it completely. If Apple is going to sell a cover for $70, especially one that looks dirty if you simply breathe near it, it would be nice to provide some official cleaning instructions.

    I'm pretty unhappy about this, and I don't suppose the apple store will take it back now. I'm still within my return period, but I made it look even worse by trying to clean it. On the other hand, I used a well-known leather cleaning solution, and nowhere did the packaging say NOT to use leather cleaner. What do you guys think?
  • William YZF-R1 Level 1 (20 points)
    Its a nice thought but somehow I don't think warranty will get you an exchange even if they didn't explicitly state "Do not use leather cleaners".

    I would assume that Apple will say that it was the leather cleaner that "damaged" the cover and any leather cleaner I have used always has a "disclaimer" printed on the container - Try on an inconspicuous area first is usually the gist of it.
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