How to Soften Leather Motorcycle Gloves

Leather gloves.
  • 1 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 25-40
What You'll Need
Leather conditioner
Rubbing alcohol
Bucket of water
Rags or towels

If you have recently purchased a pair of leather motorcycle gloves, you may have noticed that they are stiff and a bit uncomfortable. This is not uncommon with new leather gloves, and it can take a while before they are broken in and softened. Fortunately, there are a few ways you can help speed the process of softening leather motorcycle gloves, and this handy guide will show you everything you need to know.

Step 1 - Soak the Gloves in a Bucket

Place the leather motorcycle gloves in a bucket filled with hot water. Allow them to stay in the bucket for about 10 minutes or until the water is lukewarm.

Step 2 - Wear the Gloves

After you remove the gloves from the bucket of hot water, put them on immediately. They will be a bit uncomfortable; however, you need to wear them to prevent shrinkage. Wear the gloves for at least 30 minutes to an hour. As you wear the leather motorcycle gloves, you will notice that the leather starts to stretch and become softer.

Step 3 - Hang the Gloves to Dry

After the gloves have started to dry and no longer drip any water, remove the motorcycle gloves and hang them in the sun to dry. Occasionally check the gloves and remove them from the line when they are only slightly damp. This could be a couple of hours or an entire day, depending on the temperature and the amount of humidity in the air.

(Don't try to dry the leather motorcycle gloves in a dryer as they may be severely damaged by the high heat in the machine. Even though it takes considerably longer, air dry the leather motorcycle gloves outside.)

Step 4 - Put the Gloves on Again

Once the leather motorcycle gloves are only slightly damp, put them on again and wear them. Wear them until they are dry to the touch. To speed things along, you can hold the gloves in front of an electric fan.

Step 5 - Apply Alcohol

Pour some rubbing alcohol onto a dry towel and begin working it into the leather surface area of the motorcycle gloves. Repeat this several times and use a generous amount of rubbing alcohol. It is not uncommon to use an entire bottle of rubbing alcohol on a pair of leather motorcycle gloves. The alcohol dries quickly, so the gloves will not really get too wet.

Step 6 - Remove the Gloves

After the alcohol has dried completely, remove the motorcycle gloves.

Step 7 - Apply Leather Conditioner

Use a dry towel or rag and apply leather condition liquid or paste. it is better to apply the leather conditioner to the towel rather than the surface of the gloves. Rub the conditioner into the leather in small circular strokes. Also, apply a lot of pressure when rubbing on the leather conditioner. This will help to ingrain the conditioner into the pores of the leather.