Washing sheepskin jackets

John Lever

Moderator
After 25 years of washing sheepskin jackets I think I have found the easiest and safest method.
Don't just wash the jacket in a machine, the tumbling action can tear wet skins.

Wash in the bath using just enough hand hot water to cover the item. Use a gentle olive oil based shower gell and or Pears pure glycerine soap. Gently agitate and use the bar of soap directly on soiled areas, the collar, cuffs and base of the zip. Roll the jacket over to reach the back do not lift out or flip !
Drain and rinse until the water is clean.
Leave to drain for an hour or so.
Pat dry with a towel
Carefully transfer to a pllow case.
Spin dry
Hold pillow case so jacket falls out
Place on a flat drying rack to air dry for 72 hours.
You can also suspend by threading a pole through the arms.
To shrink slightly and to wrinkle up finish off by tumbling on medium when almost dry.
 
Last edited:

silvio76

Well-Known Member
After 25 years of washing sheepskin jackets I think I have found the easiest and safest method.
Don't just wash the jacket in a machine, the tumbling action can tear wet skins.

Wash in the bath using just enough hand hot water to cover the item. Use a gentle olive oil based shower gell and or Pears pure glycerine soap. Gently agitate and use the bar of soap directly on soiled areas, the collar, cuffs and base of the zip. Roll the jacket over to reach the back do not lift out or flip !
Drain and rinse until the water is clean.
Leave to drain for an hour or so.
Pat dry with a towel
Carefully transfer to a pllow case.
Spin dry
Hold pillow case so jacket falls out
Place on a flat drying rack to air dry for 72 hours.
You can also suspend by threading a pole through the arms.
Thanks for your advice.
 

ausreenactor

Well-Known Member
That Pears soap was legendary when I was a kid in the 70s. Soap that you could see through!

Never contemplated giving a shearling a soak...

Now I know.. Thanks again.
 

CBI

Well-Known Member
Great tip - Thanks John - that is more for less how I have done it. I dry though by taking some pillows and rolled up towels and sort of creating my own mannequin that i then hang up to dry (after the jacket has laid flat to dry for awhile). wish I had a photo to show it. The pillows and towels are inside plastic garbage bags so THEY don't get wet. I do/did this to prevent shrinkage as well.
 

Kennyz

Active Member
Thank you for this, John. Very informative and helpful.

Ken


After 25 years of washing sheepskin jackets I think I have found the easiest and safest method.
Don't just wash the jacket in a machine, the tumbling action can tear wet skins.

Wash in the bath using just enough hand hot water to cover the item. Use a gentle olive oil based shower gell and or Pears pure glycerine soap. Gently agitate and use the bar of soap directly on soiled areas, the collar, cuffs and base of the zip. Roll the jacket over to reach the back do not lift out or flip !
Drain and rinse until the water is clean.
Leave to drain for an hour or so.
Pat dry with a towel
Carefully transfer to a pllow case.
Spin dry
Hold pillow case so jacket falls out
Place on a flat drying rack to air dry for 72 hours.
You can also suspend by threading a pole through the arms.
To shrink slightly and to wrinkle up finish off by tumbling on medium when almost dry.
 

adfrost

Well-Known Member
On a related note, is there any leather treatment recommended for sheepskin to keep it from cracking, or is that just the name of the game for sheepskin? I haven’t done anything to my B6 for the 13 yrs I’ve owned it and there’s been quite a bit of cracking in various sections. I haven’t washed it either, but I can really say it needs it.
 

jeremiah

Well-Known Member
Sheepskins have a natural oil/wax , lanolin, in them. I’d use something like that very lightly. Not sure there is much hope once it has started cracking though.
 

Spitfireace

Well-Known Member
Lanolin based conditioner would be ideal. As that is the natural sheep oil that is found on living sheep. So using that as a conditioner would be replacing any lost natural oils.
 
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