How to Clean a Leather Watch Strap that Smells?

How to Clean a Leather Watch Strap

Leather watch straps are a popular type of watch band. They come in different colors and styles, and they can be dressed up or down to match the occasion.

Related Posts: How to Clean Your Fitbit: Keeping it Healthy and Long-lasting

However, one downside to leather watch straps is that they can sometimes smell bad. In this blog post, we will provide some tips and solutions onĀ how to clean a leather watch strap that smells.

If you own an Apple watch, we have a separate guide on how to clean your Apple watches(All Models).

What can cause a leather watch strap to smell bad?

A leather watch strap can develop an unpleasant odor for many reasons. One common cause is simply sweats and skin oils, which can build up on the strap over time. So never use a leather strap while working out or working in a hot environment, and silicone straps are a better option for such activities.

Another possible cause is bacteria, which can grow in damp or humid conditions. As I mentioned already, if you use your leather watch strap during a workout and do not dry it up after that, it is more prone to develop a funky smell due to bacteria.

If the odor is due to bacteria, it may also cause skin irritation. If this is the case, it is better to discard the strap and buy a new one.

How to prevent from smelling?

Leather watch bands are not easy to clean as they are delicate and require special care. So here, prevention is better than cure, and we have some tips on how you can prevent your leather watch strap from smelling.

  • Avoid using your watch where hot, sweat, or water is likely to come into contact with the band. If you are going to be in such an environment, take your watch off and put it in a safe place.
  • Make sure to clean your watch regularly. Gently wipe down the band with a soft, dry cloth to remove any dirt or debris.
  • Regularly use a leather waterproofing spray such as Honey Leather Conditioner to protect the band from moisture.

How to Clean a Leather Watch Strap that Smells?

Leather straps have a protective layer that can be lost over time due to dirt, sweat, and other elements. This can cause the leather watchband to lose its water resistance, making it more likely to develop an odor.

To clean your leather watch strap, you will need:

  • A soft, clean cloth
  • Water
  • Mild soap
  • Leather conditioner (optional)

Step-by-Step Guide on How to Clean a Leather Watch Strap?

  • Step 1: Remove the leather band carefully from your watch and keep the pin in a safe place.
  • Step 2: Begin by wetting your cloth with water. Do not soak the cloth; you just want it to be damp. Also, do not directly apply water to the leather strap.
  • Step 3: Add a minimal amount of mild soap to the cloth.
  • Step 4: Gently rub the soapy cloth over the leather strap. Make sure you get into all the creases and seams.
  • Step 5: Rinse the soap off with a clean, dry soft cloth.
  • Step 6: Dry the strap entirely with a soft cloth.
  • Step 7: Once the band is completely dry, you can put back the watch band.

If it doesn’t work, mix a tiny amount of baking soda into the water and use the damp cloth to clean the strap. This cleaning method with baking soda will help remove any remaining odor.

Once it is completely dry, you can apply a leather conditioner to help protect the strap. But be sure to test the conditioner on a small area of the band first to make sure it does not damage the leather.

If the smell is still present on your watch, it is better to buy a new leather strap. Why do you want to use a damaged or poor-looking old leather strap on your favorite watches?

Can you use any soap to clean a leather watch strap that smells bad?

You can use mild soap or detergent to clean your watch’s leather strap. But never directly apply it to the leather. Mix it in a cup of water and use a soft wet cloth to apply it. After that, rinse the strap with plain water and dry it off.

If the leather strap is very dirty, you can use saddle soap. Saddle soap is a cleaning product that helps remove dirt and grime from leather, and it can be found in most stores that sell leather products.


It is essential to clean your leather watch strap regularly to prevent it from developing a funky smell. Make sure to try out these tips and see which one works best for you! I hope this blog post on How to Clean a Leather Watch Strap that Smells helps you clean your smelling watch band.

Warning: Use these tips and tricks at your own risk, and ReviewsBreak or its team will not be responsible for any damage.

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