Want your designer bags to last longer?

CNA – Big-ticket luxury bags are meant to be designed and manufactured to last a lifetime. Still, some of them make it to the finish line prematurely – and maybe it’s because of what you did to them.

The way you store your bag plays a vital role in its lifespan. So, if you’re planning to pass that gorgeous Bleu Brume Hermes Kelly to your daughter, read on to learn how to avoid some common mistakes many of us make when storing handbags.

It’s never too late to form good habits, your daughter will thank you for it.

DO NOT CLEAN YOUR BAG AFTER USE

Not putting your bag on the floor doesn’t make your handbag flawless. The first, and perhaps most important, step to properly storing bags is to clean them.

After each use, it is necessary to clean the bag both inside and outside. If your handbag is leather, wipe the exterior with a slightly damp cloth or alcohol-free baby wipe, followed by a dry cloth. For untreated leather or suede bags, dust with a dry cloth. Inside, use a lint roller or hand vacuum to get to hard-to-reach places.

OVERLOAD YOUR WALLET

You’ve heard that filling an empty bag helps it retain its shape. But how much is enough? You just need to stuff your bag enough so that its structure is supported. Under-padding can cause the bag to crease permanently, while over-padding can stretch the material.

It is recommended to use purse cushions or acid-free paper as padding. But never use newspaper as the ink can transfer and stain the lining inside the bag.

LEAVE MATERIAL EXPOSED

Exposed hardware may leave marks on your bag. Chains, zippers, rivets and buckles that rest against the bag can leave indentation marks.

Wrap the chain link straps in a soft cloth or fabric and place them inside the bag so they never have a chance to leave marks on the leather. Also, avoid placing your purses too close together, as the exposed hardware can scratch or leave marks on the other bag that is pressed against it.

NOT PROTECTING YOUR BAG

Ideally, store your bag in its original box. But if space is an issue, place your bag in a dust bag to protect it from unnecessary light exposure. Bags may discolor over time, especially if exposed to prolonged light. If you don’t have a dust bag, a cotton pillowcase or cotton t-shirt will also work.

HANG YOUR BAGS

Bag handles are not designed to support sitting on hooks or hangers for long periods of time. By doing so, you actually accelerate the wear of the bag handles. Over time, the bag will eventually lose its shape. You’ll do your bag a favor by standing it on a flat surface, either on a shelf or inside drawers.

DISCARD THE SILICA GEL

The tiny silica gel packets that come with most bags are meant to absorb excess moisture in the air, so don’t rush to throw them away. They are your saving grace for keeping leather bags mold free.

If your handbag gets moldy, wipe it with a soft, dry cloth and let it air out for a day. If that’s not enough, take it to a professional for a thorough cleaning.

DO NOT VENTILATE THEM

Your bags need to come out once in a while. Be sure to take them out of their boxes or dustbags once a month for some air and while they’re out, give them once to make sure they’re mold free.