How to Wash a Backpack?

Backpacks serve various purposes, such as traveling, and are equally popular among kids and students. With so much in use, backpacks are more exposed to harsh environments, dust, ink, and even stains of fruits and eating items. 

Similarly, the wear and tear over the period ruin its natural sophisticated shine and look. However, some backpacks have natural endurance while others don't. You have to keep washing them regularly. 

It is a tiresome task to wash backpacks and men’s wallets. Nowadays, most people aren't even familiar with washing methods. The condition of the bag becomes even worse due to this lack of information. This complete guide will help you understand the fabric of your backpack and wash it accordingly.

What Are the Popular Fabrics for Backpacks?

There are different types of backpacks, such as school backpacks, computer backpacks, travel backpacks, kids backpacks, and backpacks with other items in them. Depending on the nature of their purpose, these backpacks are made with different fabrics. 

Keep in mind that the washing methods are different for each type of backpack. You can't just apply the same washing method on different fabrics; otherwise, the result will be even worse. Here are the backpack materials you must know:

  • Nylon (Pack-cloth nylon, Ripstop nylon, Ballistic nylon)
  • Polyester
  • Canvas 
  • Leather 
  • Cordura 
  • Denim
  • Polypropylene 
  • Rattan 
  • PVC
  • How to Wash a Leather Backpack? 

    Leather is the most popular bag fabric, which is made from animal skin that has been tanned. Leather is famous for its durability, water, fire, and abrasion resistance, flexibility, and long-lasting nature.

    However, a leather backpack may not be an ideal fit if your budget is low. Common types of leather are suede, nubuck, aniline, PU, bonded, and vegan leather. The cleaning methods further vary for each type of leather.

    Here is a general washing or cleaning method for a leather backpack. 

    Steps for Cleaning and Washing a Leather Bag

    You can easily hand clean as well as wash a leather backpack. The selection of washing soap or detergent is important. Here are some of the recommended steps to wash your leather backpack effectively. 

  • Take distilled water in a bowl and add castile soap to it. Mix well to create bubbles. If castile soap is not available, you can use ordinary soap too. 
  • Take a microfiber cloth instead of harsh cleaners to wipe the dirt or stain in a circular motion.
  • Take a clean, lint-free rag and dip it in clean water to remove the remaining dirtiness. 
  • Put it in the hanger and let it air dry. You can apply a good-quality leather conditioner later. 
  • Leather can also be washed in a washing machine, but there are some tips and precautions you must know before you proceed. Follow this guideline. 

  • Don't machine wash the high-colored leather backpack. Avoid leather with a lot of detailing as well. 
  • You must have castile soap for machine washing a leather item. Pour one-fourth cup of castile soap into the laundry machine just like you add detergent there. 
  • Put the leather backpack in the machine. Run the machine and wash it with a gentle cycle. 
  • Don't spin the leather in the machine; instead, wash only. 
  • Hang it out and let it air dry in the room. Don’t let it dry in the sun or with an air dryer. 
  • To restore the leather to its original condition and texture, you can apply conditioner in the end. 

    Washing of Some Other Types of Leather 

    As mentioned earlier, leather comes in various forms, and each type of leather has different cleaning or washing methods. 

  • Suede Leather 
  • Suede leather absorbs water which ultimately affects its quality and causes more stains on its surface.  Therefore, it is not good to clean it with water.

    Instead, vinegar and alcohol are the better options. Another way to clean suede is by making it waterproof first with a waterproofing agent. Velvet suede spray is recommended for suede leather. A small quantity is enough for your leather backpack. 

  • PU Leather 
  • PU plastic is an artificial leather. It is very easy to clean PU leather because it is made of plastic. Just clean the stains and dirt with water or add soap if the first method doesn’t work. You don’t have to use leather conditioner for PU leather. 

  • Vegan Leather 
  • Use warm water, soap, and a soft cloth. Rub it gently over the stains and dirt. Now take another clean cloth to rinse off the backpack. 

  • Aniline Leather 
  • A Tampico brush is used for the cleaning of an aniline leather backpack. The cleaning becomes difficult because the dirt gets into the leather. 

    Tips and Suggestions for Washing of Leather Backpack 

  • Don’t try home remedies on leather. 
  • Don’t remove ink from your leather backpack at home. 
  • Don’t apply water on grease stains.
  • Keep your bag covered and away from direct sunlight. 
  • Use wax-based products if the protective layer has fallen from the backpack. 
  • Don’t dry it in the sun or with a dryer. 
  • Use waterproofing products to protect it from water in the rainy season.  

    Buy the Top Leather Cleaners 

    • Lexol All Leather Spray Cleaner and Conditioner – Buy Now
    • Adams Leather and Interior Cleaner – Buy Now 

    How to Wash a Polyester Backpack?

    Polyester is an extremely versatile fabric, and it is an integral part of the manufacturing of several types of products.

    Polyester fabric is made from petroleum. Just like leather, polyester fabric is of different types, such as plant-based polyester, ethylene polyester, and PCDT polyester. 

    Polyester backpacks are very common these days. If your polyester travel wallets or backpacks are dirty, they are washable in the machine and without a machine. 

    Steps for Washing a Polyester Backpack 

    Follow the following steps to wash your polyester backpack: 

  • Make Sure the Backpack Is Empty 
  • The items inside the backpack can get washed or damaged if you don't remove all items. Check pockets twice whether you have cash or a gadget inside any pockets. 

  • Wipe off the Surface 
  • You can either wipe off the surface with a cloth or a stick to remove the dust on the surface. Cut the loose threads. This step yields efficient results. 

  • Read the Label 
  • The label contains useful information about washing your fabric, whether it is a jacket or a backpack. If there is a label, follow the manufacturer's instructions for the best results. 

  • Machine Wash 
  • A gentle washing cycle with cold water and non-bleach detergent with stain remover is enough to wash a polyester backpack.

    Don't wash your backpack with other items, and don't tumble dry the bag. A cloth or clean towel is a good option to blot the backpack from the inside and outside properly. Let it air dry in the end. 

  • Spot Cleaning (Without Washing Machine)
  • Wash the removable straps in a solution of warm water and deep cleaning agent. Rinse well and let them air dry. Take water in a bowl and add dish soap. 

    Now take the sponge and dip it in this solution to remove any dirt from the inside of the backpack. Remove stubborn stains with a brush. 

    Now with the help of a microfiber cloth, clean the interior and exterior properly. Rinse with clean water to get rid of soap residue on the backpack, and let it air dry for a few hours. 

    Recommended Products for Washing a Polyester Backpack

    • Dawn Dish Soap (3-Pack)Buy Now
    • Tide Hygienic Clean Liquid Laundry Detergent – Buy Now 
      • E-Cloth Microfiber Cleaning Cloth – Buy Now

      How to Wash a Canvas Backpack?

      Canvas is a plain-woven fabric made from cotton, and it is known for its durability and long-lasting nature. It is water resistant because of the conversion of cotton to synthetic fiber. Canvas is an environment-friendly and versatile fabric. 

      Canvas backpacks are available in plain as well as trimmings and prints. Therefore, you have to consider it as well. Now when it comes to washing canvas backpacks, you can either handwash or machine wash the product. 

      Handwashing of Canvas Backpack

      Handwashing is the best canvas washing method when your canvas backpack is printed, dip-dyed, and decorated with trimmings and different items. 

    • Prepare Your Canvas Backpack
    • Prepare the bag before handwashing. To do so, remove the metallic fixtures and cardboard bottom. Empty your bag and remove any debris you see at the bottom of the backpack. 

    • Test the Colorfastness 
    • This test is important for dyed canvas. Dip a small part of the bag in water and check the colorfastness. If it has low colorfastness, it will bleed into the water.

      Now, if the dye bleeds out in the water, experts don't recommend washing that canvas backpack. You can simply remove and brush the stains and dirt. 

    • Scrub with a Cloth Brush 
    • Take a soft cloth or brush with soft bristles and dip it in warm water. Now clean the stained surface in a circular motion. Rinse it off with a dry cloth in the end. 

    • Air Dry the Backpack 
    • Air drying is mandatory to achieve better cleaning and washing results. Enjoy your good-as-new bag later. 

      Machine Washing of Canvas Backpack

      Before machine washing, empty your backpack, remove metallic fixtures, and pass it through the colorfastness test. 

      Check the label for the idea of washing it at an ideal temperature. Wash the painted backpack at a cold temperature to avoid shrinkage. 

      Add mild fabric detergent to the machine. Go for a gentle wash, and one cycle can give you promising results. 

      Remove the bag from the machine, unfold it , and let it air dry. 

      Tips and Precautions for Washing a Canvas Backpack

      • Use mild soap if you can't find the best detergent
      • Remove the material such as leather or fixtures before washing. 
      • If there are stubborn stains, remove them by making a solution of 1/8 cup of non-chlorine bleach in one gallon of water

      How to Wash a PVC Backpack?

      PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride. PVC fabric is flexible, durable, and can get any shape. PVC backpacks are an ideal choice for customers who want a durable but cheap product. 

      Steps for Washing a PVC Backpack

    • Machine washing PVC backpack is not a wise option. It will completely ruin the overall look and grace of the backpack.
    • Always do the handwashing method for your PVC products. 
    • Make a solution of 4 parts of water with one part of bleach and fabric detergent. Mix it well. 
    • Empty your backpack before washing and put on a plastic glove to avoid direct contact with the solution. 
    • Take a soft cloth and do gentle scrubbing. Avoid force scrubbing on PVC products. 
    • When it is clean, rinse it with clean water. Always air dry your backpack and not in the machine’s dryer. 
    • PVC is a dangerous compound. Sanitize your hands with alcohol in the end. 
    • Final Verdict 

      Backpacks come in various colors, designs, and materials. If your backpack is dirty and requires washing or cleaning, you must go for the recommended washing method only. Some brands write washing guidelines on the label, so you must follow them before cleaning the backpack. For the maximum possible results, always choose the best products and washing detergents. We have articulated some of the recommended and proven ways to wash your leather, PVC, polyester, and canvas backpack. Follow these steps and get a good-as-new backpack. 


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