Cleaning Leather To remove mildew from leather goods, wipe with a cloth moistened with diluted alcohol (1 cup denatured or rubbing alcohol to 1 cup water). Dry in a current of air. If mildew remains, wash with thick suds made from a mild soap or detergent, saddle soap, or a soap containing a germicide or fungicide. Then wipe with a damp cloth and dry in an airy place. Polish leather shoes and luggage with a good wax dressing.