Don’t you just love the smell of leather in the air? When shopping for leather products, you may notice that there are various price differences despite they almost look the same.
A regular customer won’t be able to tell the difference immediately with just one look. Once you buy a leather product, make sure you use the KevianClean Leather Cleaner and Conditioner to maintain its natural shine and protect it from dirt and oils.
So how do you know if it’s a good value or not? The quality of leather actually depends on which animal it was produced from, the type of dye used, and how it was processed.
Here are some factors you need to check before you decide to purchase the item.
1. Identify the type of animal hide.
The strongest kind of leather is made from cow hide. It is thick and is divided into 2 layers. The upper layer offers the best quality.
The buffalo hide is similar to the cow but is much cheaper. Goat hide is often used to produce suede leather as well as pig hide while the sheep’s material is more fragile compared to the cow or buffalo hide.
2. Determine if it is full or top grain.
A full grain is the sturdiest type of leather which is picked from the outer layer of the cow. The grain feels natural, soft, and flexible. Imperfections are visible which makes it appear beautifully raw.
A top grain, on the other hand, is also taken from the cow’s outer layer. However, the difference is the natural grain, as well as the imperfections of the leather are smoothened during the tanning procedure. It feels like a little more like plastic but is tougher and inexpensive compared to the full grain.
3. Check the type of dye used.
During the tanning process, there are several types of dye used to preserve the natural imperfections of the leather. The most durable and expensive leather uses aniline. A full aniline uses a light finish to protect the leather while the semi-aniline is infused with color pigments to balance and hide the imperfections.
4. Classify the leather process.
If the leather product claims to be a genuine leather, then it simply means it was manufactured using the cheaper and less sturdy materials. A bonded leather is taken from the inner layer of the animal hide and is often used in belts and wallets while a split grain leather is also produced from the inner layers with no markings.