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Removing Cigarette Smoke Odor from Leather

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Cigarette Left Burning in Ashtray

Cigarette smoke permeates everything in a smokers household. Removing the odor of cigarettes can be difficult, especially from anything leather. This is a guide about removing cigarette smoke odor from leather.


Solutions: Removing Cigarette Smoke Odor from Leather

Read and rate the best solutions below by giving them a "thumbs up".

Tip: Warm Leather to Remove Smoke Odor

Here is what I did: I heated up the leather article in the oven! My idea is that the tobacco smell arrived by heat and through the air, so maybe it can depart again the same way.

To do this, I put the leather item into the oven at the lowest setting (150 degrees F) for about an hour and a half. I opened the oven (and the outside door of the kitchen) several times along the way to let the newly-evaporated tobacco tars and oils escape.

And it worked. It worked really well. About 95% of the tobacco smell was gone. There was no detectable "drying out" effect on the natural oils in the leather at all. If there had been, I would have applied replacement oils from a bottle of leather conditioner that I already owned.


I'm posting in the hope that this will help someone else with the same problem.

    By Garry W [1]

    Give a "thumbs up" to the solution that worked the best! Do you have a better solution? Click here to share it!


    Here are questions related to Removing Cigarette Smoke Odor from Leather.

    Question: Cigarette Smoke on Leather

    I just purchased a $188 leather Fossil purse on eBay and it reeks of cigarette smoke. It is horrible! Any ideas how to get rid of the smell?

    By Deb from SC


    Most Recent Answer

    By cutie06/06/2011

    I sympathize. I have had a similar problem. If the seller did not advertise the fact that it came from a smokers house, you can get a case opened on E'Bay. I did. It's a vile smell. I think the hanging outside and a soft cloth slightly dampened with water and baking soda solution. Try an inconspicuous area first! Other ideas are-lavender essential oil diluted in warm water-shake mixture well (oil sits on top of water) and (again on an inconspicuous area), clean leather-don't saturate it! Helped me!

    Question: Removing Odors from Leather Purse

    I just bought a 210 dollar handbag off of eBay. It is new with tags, but it sure doesn't smell new. It smells of cigarette smoke doused with perfumes. The seller won't respond on giving it back. I don't know what to do. Any ideas how to make this thing smell new again. It is a Michael Kors leather handbag and smells overwhelmingly bad. It gives me a headache to be in same room with it. Sheesh!

    By Cathie


    Most Recent Answer

    By bettyeandjohncurtis07/30/2012

    File a resolution with eBay unless it has gone over its length of time - I "won" smokey purse on 6/19/12 and must file with Resolution Center by 8/2/12.
    Best of Luck

    Question: Removing Cigarette Odor from a Leather Purse

    Anyone got any ideas on how to get the smell of cigarette smoke out of a leather purse? I have tried Febreze and saddle soap, but neither made much difference.

    By SLM

    Most Recent Answer

    By ang [2]05/22/2012

    Sprinkle baking soda or kitty liter in purse. Shake and let sit for an hour. After shaking out to remove, brush well with a soft brush. Hanging out in sunshine or fresh air may also help.

    Question: Removing Cigarette Odor from Leather Handbag

    I just purchased a Michael Kors handbag from another individual. As soon as the woman handed it to me, I could smell the reek of the cigarettes. They seemed like a heavy smoker from the way the bag smells. I don't really want to be rude and not get it, because I had been looking for a handbag like this for awhile. It's a leather handbag. I have tried fabric sheets, fabric softener and water mixture, coffee grounds (read that online), and vinegar and water mixture. Any other ideas?

    By L K W

    Most Recent Answer

    By Dinah Ackerson [2]12/24/2014

    This is a tough one but an online search offers many suggestions. I chose this answer as it suggests several possibilities:


    Try wiping down both the inside and outside of your bag with a very rung out damp cloth, then give it a dry wipe straight after to remove any moisture. Never soak yourleather bag unless you're hell bent on ruining it.


    Wipe it down with diluted white vinegar. Use your judgement on the strength of the dilution given the nature of your bag, but 50/50 should work in most cases. White vinegar will help kill any mold, bacteria and odours without staining.


    While there's a million ways in which you can do this, we suggest pouring the bicarb into a small pot or even a baby sock, then leaving it inside the bag for a day or two to neutralise bad smells.


    Just like the baking soda tip, try pouring dry ground coffeeinto an open pot, small bag or sock, and leaving in your bag for a day or two. Once the coffee smell fades it should take any cigarette smoke with it.


    Yep, it sounds a bit scifi, but this is actually used in water filters as a neutraliser and some medicines to fight flatulence. Hmm. Wrap up the ground version in a handkerchief, cloth or leave in an open pot to diffuse.


    Get 'em out of your knicker drawer and into that smelly vintage bag if the odour you're fighting is fairly light. Citrus fruit peels could work in the same way too if you're not a fan of florals.


    Place it on a cloth or piece of paper to prevent it rubbing onto the lining of your bag, then leave for a few days to kill any odours.


    Yep, we mean put it in a sealed plastic bag to stop it getting wet, and pop it in the freeze for a few hours. The temperature should kill any mold, mildew or bacteria.

    If you have a shoe rack for your dryer, pop your bag into a pillow case, place it on the rack and throw in a few scented sheets. Set it for a gentle cycle and repeat a few times for very stubborn smells.


    Spritz some perfume or Febreze onto tissue paper and stuff your handbag until it's bulging. Leave for a day or two, then give it a good airing outside, preferably in the sun. Avoid using newspaper for this as the ink could rub off onto your bag leaving stains.

    With all these tips make sure to use a little common sense and consider the material of your bag - if in doubt, head to a professional cleaner for some indepth and more specific advice.

    Question: Removing Smoke Smell from Leather Furniture

    I just purchased a second hand leather suite. It smells of smoke. Any tips to remove the odor?

    By Tracy from Gloucestershire

    Most Recent Answer

    By 1614005/27/2014

    1.spray Lysol- the "crisp linen" onto your the leather and let it soak.

    RE: Removing Smoke Smell from Leather Furniture

    Question: Removing Cigarette Smell from Leather Jacket

    How do I get cigarette smell out of a leather jacket?

    By Wendy from Dallas

    Most Recent Answer

    By Frugal Sunnie [11]05/04/2013

    Any good leather cleaner should remove both the nicotine and the odor from the leather. The lining, however, is more than likely what is holding the odor-a good dry cleaner certified to clean leather will be able to clean and deodorise the lining as well as the leather.

    You can try damp sponging the lining at home if you prefer to avoid dry cleaning chemicals.

    Turn the jacket inside out and either hang on a good quality wooden hanger with those supportive wide, thick shoulder areas, or lay it out on a kitchen worktop.

    Mix a half-water, half vinegar solution and dip a sponge into the solution.

    Wring the sponge as hard as you possibly can and wipe the lining down. Be careful to avoid getting the lining actually wet or touching the leather with the solution.

    You may want to test this method in a small and inconspicuous spot on the lining to be sure the solution won't damage the lining, and I can't stress enough that you do not want to get the lining soaking wet with the solution. Very-very-very-very slightly damp is what you are going for here.

    Pay special attention to the sleeves and underarm areas, also the shoulders and back top of the lining as this is usually where the odors are trapped and held by the lining fabric. If the first go-round doesn't completely remove the odor you may want to repeat the operation especially in those areas.

    When you've damp-cleaned the entire lining hang the jacket (still inside out) in a well ventilated area out of the sunlight-the vinegar smell will dissipate (within 24 hours) and take the cigarette stench with it.

    Question: Removing Cigarette Smoke Smell from Shoes

    We received three pairs of leather shoes from a friend. They have never been worn, but she is a heavy smoker and we cannot get the smell out of the shoes. Does anyone have a cure? There are two pairs are heels and the other is patent leather.
    They smell inside and out.

    By L Peters

    Most Recent Answer

    By Dorothy [40]06/21/2012

    Sprinkle fine salt or bi carbonate of soda and leave them in the sun.

    Question: Removing Cigarette Smell on a Leather Satchel

    My daughter purchased a small leather satchel at a flea market. Unfortunately the prior user must have smoked as it reeks. Any suggestions for removing the smell? A shoe repair person suggested diluting Lestoil with water and rubbing. Will this work? Damage the leather?

    By Cynthia

    Most Recent Answer

    By Melody Hoffman [1]08/17/2011

    The best odor remover of all is sunlight. I once bought a great tote bag that was perfect except that it smelled strongly of smoke. I put in on my lawn in the sun, turned it occasionally, then turned it inside out and flipped it. Within two days, the smoke odor was completely gone never to return.

    Question: Removing Cigarette Smoke Odor on Suede Fringe Jacket

    I was given the most beautiful suede fringe jacket I have ever seen. It would retail for $300, but it reeks of cigarette smoke. What can I do? I dearly love this person and they know I love fringe jackets so they gave as gift.

    By V.Lenihan

    Question: Removing Cigarette Smell from iPad Cover

    I spent a total of two months with my daughter where there is always someone with a cigarette going. My iPad cover cost $100 and it smells like an ashtray. None of the solutions can help me as this is not a purse. Any ideas?

    By Debra B from Cleveland, OH

    Question: Removing Smoke Smell from Leather Furniture

    I have just bought a second red leather 3 piece suite. How do I get rid of the smell of smoke without damaging the leather and colour? Also, how can I keep it looking lovely? I don't want to get rid of it because I just bought it second hand;it is in excellent condition.

    By Sharon

    Question: Removing Cigarette Smell from Leather Purse

    Anyone got any ideas on how to remove cigarette smoke from a leather purse? I have tried Febreze and saddle soap, neither made much difference.

    By SLMc from Pueblo, CO

    Question: Smoke Smell on a Persian Lamb Coat

    I bought a beautiful persian lamb coat with a mink collar from eBay and it arrived reeking of smoke. Any suggestions as to how to remove the smoke smell?

    I currently have it hanging in my closed bathroom with a Biozone 3000 ozone purifier and am hoping the gas will have some neutralizing affect, but is there anything else I can do? Can the fur be treated with Nature's Miracle like I use on my wool rugs when the dogs have an accident? Any suggestions would be very much appreciated. Thanks!

    Kellie from Villa Park, CA


    Thrifty Fun has been around so long that many of our pages have been reset several times. Archives are older versions of the page and the feedback that was provided then.

    Archive: Cigarette Smoke on Leather

    I bought a leather coat from an online auction and it reeks of cigarette smoke. How do I get the smell out of the coat? It is a very nice soft leather.

    Ruthie from Kingston Springs, TN

    RE: Cigarette Smoke from Leather 10/11/2004
    Try both baking soda as this absorbs order and spray with lysol neutral air odor eliminator spray found at grocery stores.
    By Conni (Guest Post)
    RE: Cigarette Smoke from Leather 10/11/2004
    In the Supermarket super products book by Jerry Baker, he suggests the following methods for cleaning leather:

    1. Wipe bag with one part alcohol and one part water, then follow up with a good leather conditioner, found in supermarkets.

    2. Wipe it with a cloth dipped in milk, then use a clean cloth to polish.

    By rdoe1976
    RE: Cigarette Smoke from Leather 12/19/2004
    Wipe with one part vinegar and one part water. You may need to go over the leather a few times. A paste made from baking soda and water is also good; but it's also harder to clean up. However, if the smell is particularly stubborn, baking soda will do the trick. Let the leather dry out a little and wipe down with some leather conditioner.
    By Cleaning without chemicals (Guest Post)
    RE: Cigarette Smoke from Leather 08/09/2005
    Put a fabric softener sheet in the purse for a day, this also takes the odor out of the car if you use a few sheets in the car overnight.
    By claude (Guest Post)
    RE: Cigarette Smoke on Leather 10/17/2005
    I have had great success of removing odors of many kinds from many things with coffee. Put about a tablespoon full of dry coffee grounds (right from the can), put in an envelope and seal and place in purse and let sit for several days or as long as necessary.
    By Anna from Maine (Guest Post)
    RE: Cigarette Smoke on Leather 01/20/2006
    When my leather jacket gets smokey (YUCK!) I put it in the dryer on low or on fluff, with a dryer sheet in it and turn it on for about 10 minutes, so far it has not done any damage to it at all and I have been doing this to my leather jacket for about 2 yrs.... Also, sometimes I will hang it outside overnight and stuff the sleeves with dryer sheets and it takes the smell out.
    By kimmcg
    RE: Cigarette Smoke on Leather 01/23/2006
    I also bought a beautiful (& expensive) black leather handbag online. Too bad it smelled like an old ashtray. Here's what I did:
    1. clean with saddle soap
    2. wipe down with vinegar/water solution as stated here; let dry
    3. wipe down again with Nature's Miracle (pet store product-enzymatic cleaner for killing organic smells); let dry; repeat if necessary.
    4. rub in neats foot oil or leather conditioner to soften the leather
    5. set an open box of baking soda inside the closed bag every night for a few days (removing the top 1/4-inch layer of soda each time).

    This was a pain in the @#$%, but now the bag is safe to use (i.e., folks don't think I'm some kind of chain smoker when I walk into the room). And the bag still looks beautiful. In retrospect, I doubt the saddle soap step did much, so I'd skip that one and go straight to the vinegar. Only the exposed layer of baking soda actually absorbs odors so removing the top layer each day allows more absorption (BTW, same for your fridge box, too).

    If you buy some fancy leather conditioners, you may get that distinctive leather smell back, but the neats foot oil (used for my son's baseball glove) did just fine. You may want to repeat this step as well since you've done what you should never do to good leather: get it wet.

    Best of luck! (and I hope your leather isn't light colored).

    By Ellis (Guest Post)

    Archive: Cigarette Smoke on Leather

    I bought 2 beautiful all weather leather vintage handbags by Dooney & Bourke and wallets from ebay. I did not know, but the owner was a smoker.


    Archive: Cigarette Smoke on Leather

    Cigarette Smoke on Leather. How do I get the smell of cigarette smoke out of a corduroy/suede purse?


    Archive: Cigarette Smoke on Leather

    I have some leather clothes (blazers, skirts, jackets) that I inherited after my mother passed away two years ago. She was a heavy smoker and the clothes smell like smoke.


    Archive: Cigarette Smoke on Leather

    How can I clean a Coach purse to remove smoke odor? I purchased a used Coach leather purse online. The seller didn't disclose that she was a cigarette smoker. I have not used the purse, because I detest the odor. I tried to sprinkle it with carpet deodorizer, but it did not help. I love the purse, but can't use it as it is.

    By Zari from Tucker, GA

    RE: Cigarette Smoke on Leather

    A garbage bag with a gallon or so of kitty litter in the bottom, put your purse or whatever the item (I use this for books), put your purse in a bowl or shoebox on top of the litter. Tie up the bag, check after one week. If the smell is not gone leave it in longer. (06/09/2010)

    By monday67