Got a stain on your handbag? There's nothing worse than going out with your beautiful new handbag, especially if it's a designer piece like Chloe or Mulberry, and discovering that you've already picked up a stain on it within a few hours.

There are several ways you can get a stain on your handbag. One of the worst offenders is a new pair of jeans, which will rub off on bags to leave a blue mark. Other new clothing can do this too, so it's worth letting your clothes go through the wash a few times before wearing them with a light coloured bag.

Other ways you can stain your bag include: 

  • Taking it to the pub and spilling red wine on it.
  • Leaving it on the grass when you're enjoying a lunchtime sunbathing session
  • Dropping a biro inside and realising it's creating a massive ink crater in the lining of your bag
  • Throwing it in your car, only to discover you've smashed your foundation and it's all over the place.
Basically, life gets in the way of keeping your bag stain free. But while it's impossible to prevent stains occurring (although it's worth getting a waterproofing protection spray), it is possible to remove some of those stains. Our first suggestion would be to get it to a professional, who will know exactly how to lift the stain. If you'd rather do it yourself, read on..

Cleaning leather

If you can, get some leather shampoo. It's specially formulated to get stains out of leather without being too harsh, and relatively cheap too. 

Have a look at the tag on the bag, as it should give you an idea of how the bag can be cleaned or cared for. If you can't get hold of the leather shampoo, you can gently clean the bag with a soft wash cloth, water (ideally from a filtered jug), a mild body wash (Dove is great because it's PH neutral) and a dry cloth. 

To clean it, you'll need to mix the water and soap together and dip the cloth in. Wring out most of the water and wipe the bag (do NOT rub too hard). Then buff dry with the dry cloth. 

Cleaning suede

Like with leather bags, there's a shampoo for suede bags

Suede is tougher to clean as you risk destroying the texture of the fabric if you clean it too hard. Strangely, the best thing you can have to hand if you want to hand clean your bag is a pencil rubber. 

It's best to clean suede when it's dry. Try and lift any excess moisture by dabbing with a paper towel first. Firstly, restore the texture of the suede by gently buffing it with a soft towel. Next,  very gently rub the stain with the rubber. This should help lift the mark away. 

Cleaning the lining

Did you know you can clean your bag lining with hairspray?

Firstly, empty your bag and, if you can, pull out the lining so it's easier to clean. Place a cloth under the section you want to clean, and spray the stain with hairspray. Dab it with a paper towel or dry cloth, then dab at it again - this time with a damp cloth. Continue to do this until the stain disappears!

Those are just a few of the methods we use for cleaning handbags. How do you clean yours?