How to Care for and Clean Your Herschel Backpack

14 March 2024

When shopping for a backpack, you want to make sure you choose one that’s not only suited to your style, but that is also durable and will stand the test of time. Besides the normal wear and tear every day associated with using your backpack every day, other issues that go missed that aren’t accounted for is the sodium created from our oils and sweat that can seep into the materials, especially from your shoulders and back. If you’re an avid hiker, or camp regularly, the elements and nature can not only cause your backpack to become dirty, but mud and gunk can get into the zipper; or you may even spill food and drink inside.

Little America Backpack

Your backpack is bound to get dirty, but that doesn’t mean it has to stay dirty. Follow along as below we’ve created a step by step guide on how you can clean and care for your backpack.



- Soap. Something along the lines of a natural soap that does not contain fragrances or additives, like a castile soap, that you can pick up at a health food store; or you can opt for a washing product made for clothing and materials.

- Sponge; or washcloth, flannel, or tea towel.

- A soft bristled nylon brush; or an old toothbrush.

Best cleaning practice is to check what the manufacturer has recommended. However, this may also cause confusion as some manufacturers recommend to completely submerge your backpack into water while others advise against it.


We suggest following these basic guidelines:

Do not machine wash or tumble dry.

- Cold or lukewarm water is always best as hot water may shrink materials.

- Use a light hand when brushing to clean as you do not want to risk removing any protective coating the material may have. Note: This includes zippers as they often have a water-resistant coating.

- When drying your backpack, keep out of direct sunlight. We suggest hanging to dry inside or in the shade.

Retreat Backpack

A deep clean every so often will no help the durability of your backpack and keep it looking fresh for longer! 

- Empty out the main area and any pockets.

- Use a vacuum, or substitute, to remove any loose debris like dirt, sand, or crumbs, focusing on seams and crevices.

- If you’re able to, remove shoulder straps/hip belts, and wash separately with your sponge/cloth. Rinse well under water.

- Fill a sink or bathtub with 6 inches of cold or lukewarm water. With your soap, use your sponge/cloth to remove any stains or spots from the outside and inside areas and pockets. Pay attention to any parts of the backpack that touch the skin. Use an extra light hand on any mesh areas to avoid ripping or tearing.

- After draining the sink or bathtub, fill up again with 6 inches of clean water to rinse off any remaining soap (you may need to repeat rinsing until the water runs clean).

Classic Backpack

Not everyone has time to deep clean, so to stay on top of things, give your bag a quick once over after activities such as hiking or camping.

- Make sure any main areas and all pockets are empty by giving your backpack a shake upside to remove any debris or crumbs.

- Use your sponge or cloth to wipe out the inside.

Note: You do not need to use soap for this part.

- With a light hand and small amount of soap, use your sponge/cloth to scrub away any stains or spots on the outside.

- Use cold and clean water to rinse off any soap.

We hope our step by step guide on cleaning and caring for you backpack has helped answer any questions you may have had.

Show off your freshly cleaned Herschel backpack by tagging us on Instagram @herschelsupply