Leather is one of the most widely used raw materials in the world, since it is used to manufacture various elements for both the field of fashion and interior design and even the manufacture of tools and objects, so we can find both in our footwear, clothing and accessories, as well as in the area of upholstery, furniture manufacturing, chairs and other decorative elements.
In the same way, it should be noted that the fact that it is one of the most used materials in different industries is not by mere chance, but rather due to the great benefits that its quality and resistance provide as characteristics that define its splendor and fame by being recognized as one of the best raw materials. That is why, in this post we will briefly explain the types of leather that exist and how you can learn to differentiate between them when buying leather goods or if you decide to buy tanned leather to make your own accessories.
The first thing you should know is that the leather, before reaching you, must undergo a series of treatments so that it can be worked effectively, therefore, in principle, the animal's skin must go through a tanning process that can be vegetable or chrome, depending on the type of chemicals that are decided to use for this process, it must also be remembered that this process is important since it guarantees the flexibility of the leather, as well as providing greater resistance.
In this way, the types of leather can be classified according to their treatment and origin. In the case of origin, the following types of leather can be found:
1. Porcine leather: This type of leather comes from pigskin, likewise it is generally used to reinforce other leathers, since its skin is very weak and not very resistant to water and sun, it also has a surface Triangular-shaped porous, with an irregular grain, which gives it a thick and inflexible leather to work with.
2. Bovine or bovine leather: As its name indicates, it comes from the skin of animals such as bulls, cows, or oxen. These types of leather are fine-grained, so they offer greater resistance against inclement weather, wear and tear from use and abuse is much less and provide a long life of use to their manufacturing items. That is why it is usually used for the production of clothing, shoes and other fashion items such as bags, wallets, belts and key rings.
3. Equine Leather: This type of leather comes from animals such as horses and mules, in this way the type of leather that is provided is quite resistant to abrasion and extreme weather conditions, however, despite having a smooth grain and with few imperfections, its very hardness makes it less flexible at the time of working, which is why it is used in the production of more rustic garments such as boots, briefcases and belts.
4. Goat Leather: This type of leather comes from the skin of animals such as goats and sheep, so its leather is characterized by its softness and flexibility, since it has a fairly smooth grain and is even more marked than bovine, as well because this type of leather to the touch is much softer and more flexible, however it has greater resistance than other types of leather in relation to traction and tearing, due to this it is used in the production of finer articles such as gloves, jackets and pants.
5. Exotic leathers: In this case, as its name refers, it comes from the skins of exotic animals such as snakes, crocodiles, otters, among others. It should be noted that this type of leather is characterized by maintaining a unique and unrepeatable pattern on its surface, so that at the treatment level it is quite expensive since various special care must be used to preserve its beauty, hence they are types of very expensive and hard-to-find leathers.
Types of leather according to its treatment
1. Full grain leather: We could say that it is natural leather, since this type of leather is characterized by preserving the outermost layer of the animal's skin, so it will be possible to observe the porosity and other natural marks that have suffered by the animal in life. In this way, by not applying any treatment, beyond dyeing, this type of leather is one of the most breathable, resistant and durable, it should also be noted that over time it will acquire a more natural appearance that is often lost in treated leather.
2. Top grain leather: On the contrary, this type of leather is characterized by the fact that the outermost layer of the animal's skin has previously been sanded, so it will present a smoother and more uniform appearance, however, despite Being softer and more flexible, it should be noted that it is much less resistant. In the same way it should be mentioned that an artificial coating layer is usually applied to it to improve its durability and its general appearance.
However, it should be clarified that both types of leather are genuine and of high quality compared to synthetic leather, however, each type of leather will be for different types of products, for example, in the case of full grain leather as it is much more resistant and hard it is used for the manufacture of suitcases, belts and footwear, since this type of leather offers greater resistance against water. While top grain leather, being smoother and more flexible, is often used in the manufacture of softer items such as bags, jackets, and gloves.
How to recognize the type of leather?
Recognizing the types of leather when buying any item is important to know what is best for us and what we are looking for, which is why in order to identify it you will do it first by perceiving the textures, since in the case of full grain leather you will be able to perceive a more corrugated surface and visually see natural marks and even the porosity of the skin, while on the contrary if what you are looking for is top grain leather you should look at the surface to the touch it will be smooth and uniform so it will be much smoother.
On the other hand, you can also carry out the breathability test, which consists of placing a drop of water on the surface of the leather and observing what happens, in this way, if you observe that the drop is absorbed quickly, you will be in the presence of full-grain leather. while if you visualize that the drop remains intact on the surface you can determine that the type of leather is superior grain since this is less breathable due to its treatment.
In short, whether you decide to buy leather goods or even choose to make your own leather products, it is important that you learn to recognize the types of leather that exist, since as mentioned above each one has its own characteristics and according to these will be the appropriate use as raw material for the manufacture of certain elements.
That is why today at Curtidos Menacho we invite you not to miss out on our catalog of leathers with different colors and textures so that you can make your own leather products and articles with the best leathers on the Spanish market. Do not wait any longer and download our catalog of 100% authentic quality leathers and skins.