Keep those clothes clean! Best motorcycle kit cleaning products

Motorcycle kit cleaning products can make the mundane but necessary job of maintaining your bike kit as painless and easy as possible.

It should go without saying that cleaning your motorbike kit is of paramount importance – just as important as cleaning your motorbike, in fact. However, what many don’t realise is that as clothing and helmets get dirty, their performance can suffer.

They may not necessarily offer any less protection, but they might not keep the water out as well as they used to, they might start to hum a bit, or they might not fit quite as well as they should. Or, they might just look really grubby and like you don’t really care about them.

So keeping them clean and in good condition is as much about keeping you warm and dry as it is protected.

Different types of clothing need different types of motorcycle kit cleaning products and maintenance. Leathers, for example, don’t like lots of water. Soaking, hosing or washing machines can alter the nature of the leather itself and make it not only uncomfortable but also not as safe as it should be.

Cleaning textile clothing in the washing machine is perfectly acceptable once you’re removed all the armour and make sure that there is no fabric conditioner involved at all – it will ruin any breathable membranes.

Using a spin cycle is also a bad idea as it can force water through the porous membranes in materials like GoreTex, and they won’t keep you dry anymore.

Keeping helmets spick and span is relatively straightforward but sometimes needs a bit more than just a squirt of freshener inside. But even then, it’s a simple process to keep them fresh and clean. Similarly, on the outside, getting rid of road grime is fairly simple.

Related: Best water repellant sprays for your motorbike helmet visor

Boots and gloves are also easy to keep clean – and working properly. Some benefit from re-proofing – lots of people swear by products such as Dubbin for leather boots, for example – a spin-off from mountaineering, but modern boots rarely need this, with a simple clean and dry often all that is needed.

Of course, dead insects in summer are perhaps the most common ‘foe’, and they are simple to remove though it just needs a little care.

Water-only wipes can help to soften the remains of bugs on clothing and helmets, for example, but nothing else in the wipes, such as baby wipes – clothing won’t like it. Gently rehydrate the insect carcasses and then remove with the appropriate cleaner.

Here is a selection of motorcycle kit cleaning products that will keep your gear in perfect condition.

Best for easy use

Price: £7.19

This spray-on leather cleaner from specialist Nikwax is said to be designed for breathable leather gear, and the online reviews tell the tale. Reviewers have used it on all sorts of leather gear, including motorcycle jackets, with excellent results. It is Amazon's Choice for 'motorcycle clothing cleaner' and will both clean and revitalise leather clothing.


  • Easy to use
  • Water-based formula


  • Not as good on stubborn stains

Best for a budget

This leather care from Motul will clean, nourish and revive any leather clothing, including jackets, trousers, boots and gloves. It will remove dirt and insect residue and revive the leather, restoring the essential oils and nutrients and leave it supple and looked after. It will help the leather surface repel water and prolong the life of the garment.


  • Creates a lovely shine
  • Softens


  • Have to use a lot to see worthwhile results

Best for a multipack

This handy kit from motorcycle-gear giant Oxford contains everything you need with you on a trip to keep your helmet clean and fresh. There is a bottle of helmet cleaner to get rid of road grime and bugs, as well as an anti-fog spray to prevent misting of the visor or spectacles.

There is also a bottle of anti-bacterial helmet sanitiser to prevent any smells from building up until you can remove the interior to wash it and a microfibre cloth to apply it all. And it comes in a useful pouch to fit under the seat or in a bag.


  • Carry case included
  • Multiple products inside


  • Smaller than expected

Best for portability

This wax from Putoline is designed to clean and restore leather clothing, boots and gloves. Reviews online are very good, reporting it has good ability to clean leather as well as revitalise and impart a degree of waterproofing. The instructions say work the wax in with a cloth, removing dirt and coating the surface, then apply heat with a hair dryer so it soaks in and revitalises the material.


  • Waterproof formula
  • Makes a protective layer


  • Small size

Best for a duo

Price: £13.99

This double-pack of Nikwax products is great for washing and re-proofing textile clothing, with or without membranes. The Tech Wash replaces the washing powder or liquid in a cool hand-wash cycle in a washing machine, and then, the wash-in repeats the process to reinstate waterproofing qualities.

It's as easy as washing the garments twice to get them clean and waterproof again. I use this at least twice a year on textiles.


  • Great size
  • Free from fluorocarbon


  • May have to use more than once

Best for waterproofing

This waterproofing spray from Oxford can be used on virtually any fabric to give water repellence and proofing. Water will bead on the surface and runoff, making clothing much more protective to the elements and also protects the fabric from UV radiation. In addition to motorcycle clothing, it can also be used on tents, tarpaulins and any material that needs to be waterproof.


  • Not sticky
  • Rain will run off with ease


  • Bottle can get a bit slippery

Best for gifting

Price: £5.49

It might not look like much, but this V2 Visor Sponge could be the most useful thing in your pocket to keep your visor clean. Just dampen the sponge with water, and it will remove even the most dried-on dirt and insect debris, leaving your visor sparkling and clear.

It comes with a plastic pouch to keep it damp for when you need it out and about and a cloth to dry the visor afterwards. I use one of these regularly, and it's really good.


  • Affordable
  • Accessories and applicators included


  • Not the most durable

Best for spraying

More than just a squirt of freshening spray to mask odours, this Muc-Off foam spray is designed to actually clean helmet interiors as well as body armour, gloves and boots. Simply apply the foam to the article in question - helmet liner or boot insole, for example, and gently agitate the dirt away. The foam leaves the item smelling citrus fresh, and it won't irritate the skin, according to the manufacturer.


  • Citrussy fragrance
  • Gets rid of grime


  • Smell dissipates quickly

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