Rub-off is typically caused by wax, silicone, or oil-based conditioning products, which leave a residue that inhibits the pigment’s ability to bond. Did you clean with alcohol? Did you do the tape test for adhesion? If you need to re-prep the surface, work with denatured or rubbing alcohol. You only need to strip the areas that are getting poor wear (recall the old adage, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”). Touch-up is easier than the initial restoration.
Rub-off and poor color wear can also be caused by:
- areas that were saturated with body oil;
- leather or vinyl that was very worn or damaged;
- interior padding or foam that has lost its plushness and/or lots of wrinkles and folds in the upholstery which creates more movement stresses the leather or vinyl;
- pieces that receive a lot of contact with chemicals, liquids or dog claws;
- or bonded, faux, or polyurethane (PU) materials which resist all coatings and are discouraged.