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Snakeskin Designer Purses: How to Repair Snakeskin Handbags

repair snakeskin handbag

When Devi Kroell’s celebrated python purses appeared in fashion magazines in Spring 2004, snakeskin handbags emerged as a fashion favorite for the modern woman.

With a variety of luxe styles, shapes and fashionable colors, these must-have designer snakeskin bags work double duty as sophisticated daytime or nighttime accessories.

A “designer snakeskin handbag” can be mesmerizing, but when this exotic purse needs restoration, a meticulous process of polishing, glazing and desalting stains is required to care for your designer handbag.

Because the scales of snakeskin bags dry out and shed with age and improper handling, simple repairs are necessary to extend the life of your designer handbag.

Things You’ll Need to Repair a Snakeskin Designer Purse:

  • White Cloth
  • Water
  • Desalting liquid
  • Neutral leather polish
  • Designer snakeskin handbag leather conditioner
  • Professional snakeskin handbag glazing

Determine the smooth sides of your snakeskin handbag scales.

Run your fingers along the skin of the snakeskin bag. The natural direction of the scales will be either smooth to the touch instead of rough.

Apply conditioning treatments, desalting liquids and neutral polish on the smooth portion of the snakeskin scales, which is the natural snakeskin grain, according to Snakeskin handbag repair experts VintageSkins.com.

Dislodge dirt from the snakeskin scales with a clean white cloth.

Dab the end of the cloth in cool water. Pat the scales down gently in the natural direction of the skin to remove the dirt.

Use water sparingly without soap. Too much liquid applied to the skin may discolor the scales permanently by reacting with the tannin applied during the modification of the snakeskin.repair snakeskin designer handbag

Remove salt stains from your snakeskin handbag with a desalting liquid.

Apply a teaspoon of remover on a small white cloth. Dab the spots gently. Air-dry away from heat. After the skin dries, apply a leather conditioner made specifically for snakeskin and exotics.

Apply neutral polish to combat fading leather.

Clear leather polish may restore aging snakeskin. Before applying polish on the handbag, patch test a small section. Avoid wax polish; it is too heavy. The polish will add extra weight to an exotic snakeskin handbag with scales.

Repair flaking snakeskin handbags with glazing.

A professional handbag restorer applies a clear glaze to the skin to return the scales to their original shine and luster. Costs to reglaze a small snakeskin handbag in 2010 may range from 100 to 200 dollars.

Additional Snakeskin Handbag Repair Tips

  • Have your snakeskin handbag professionally cleaned once a year to maintain the bag’s shine appeal.
  • If your snakeskin handbag gets wet, the leather may darken beyond repair, suggest the handbag repair experts at Gleni.

More Designer Handbag Posts:

How To Care For Your Designer Handbag: 16 Tips for Designer Purse Maintenance
How to Buy Authentic Designer Handbags Without Getting Ripped Off
Wholesale Designer Handbags: How to Buy Designer Purses Wholesale


  1. Excellent blog, very imformative and to the point, keep up the good work.

  2. Hi,
    I recently purchased a small clutch purse that appears to be real snake skin. It has a different look than the ones you would see in walmart, and it “lifts” on the scales if you run your hand along the scales the wrong way.

    The bag has a small tag inside saying “Made in the Phillippines” but that is all I know.
    Do you know how I can tell if this is real snakeskin? If so, how much is this worth?

  3. fashion designers

    Great article and helpful tips. It’s nice to see that people still take the time to teach others by offering free advice and information. That’s what keeps ‘em coming back!

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