How to identify genuine leather – Tips & Tricks

Leather is such a material that can be separated from any synthetic fiber due to its natural specialty, rich and elegant finish. Today, many similar-looking genuine and synthetic leather materials are available on the market and are sold at a much cheaper price. But, if you don’t know the difference between genuine leather and artificial leather, you will have to suffer.

There are lots of products that are made from artificial leather, but are classified as “genuine leather” or “made with genuine leather.” These are ambiguous terms used by marketers to mislead consumers.

If you plan to buy a high-quality leather product, which is quite expensive, you should be able to distinguish genuine leather from synthetic on your own.

In this post, we will discuss every single characteristic of genuine leather and the way to identify the genuine leather from synthetic.

Be careful with the product that does not specifically claim to be real leather.

First of all, we recommend that you should buy your leather products from a trusted store with professional advice and it can be from any famous brand. If it’s labeled “man-made material,” it’s definitely synthetic leather. But if it doesn’t say anything at all, the manufacturer will most likely want to hide the fact that it’s not real leather. Of course, used goods may have lost their labels. But most manufacturers are proud of the fact that they wear real leather, and they will notice it as follows:

  • Real leather
  • Genuine Leather
  • Top / full grain leather
  • Made with animal products

Check the surface grain

Imperfections, in leather, are actually a good thing. Remember, real leather is made from animal skin, and therefore each piece is as random and unique as the animal it comes from. Very regular, uniform, and the like beads often indicate a machine-made part.

  • Real leather can have scratches, wrinkles, and wrinkles. This is a good thing!
  • Keep in mind that as manufacturers become more skillful, their designs better mimic real leather. This makes buying online, where you only have one image, very difficult to do.

The Touch.

Confusions can be created with the naked eye, but touch does not deceive.

  • When we touch any product made with genuine leather, we will notice how the material is soft, smooth and flexible, on the contrary, synthetic leather is much more rigid and cold. The warmth of genuine leather is another of its hallmarks.
  • The elasticity of the material is greater in real leather, so when you press it, wrinkles are created that are typical of this type of leather, a matter that does not happen in the synthetic that maintains its rigidity and shape under pressure.
  • Turning the garment over is another trick to know how to identify genuine leather. If fluffs are created on the reverse side, we will almost certainly be in quality leather.
  • Scratching with your fingernail is another way to test the authenticity of leather. If when doing this exercise particles rise, we will be before a quality product.
  • The roughness of the edges of genuine leather is another clue to its quality, since unlike artificial leather that has perfectly uniform edges, real leather, being composed of filaments, tends to fray at the corners.
  • Water is another clear proof. That is, we can test the quality of the leather by pouring a quantity of water on the garments. In the case of real leather, the liquid will be absorbed without any problem in a very short time, however, if the garment is imitation, the water will just float on it.

The Smell

This is one of the most important tests. Bring your nose close to the garment and smell it. In general, real skins have a characteristic odor. This smell will be different depending on the skin, whether it is from belts, shoes, leather jackets or leather goods. It will go from stronger to softer. The leatherette for example will have a characteristic plastic smell.

You have to be careful in any way because there are artificial leathers on the market with odorizes that imitate the smell of real leather. In this case, this odor will be lost over time like all artificial odors.

The View

In genuine leather, the pores of the skin can be observed in its texture, which does not occur in synthetic leather. Although in this case it is much easier to deceive the not very experienced observer in this matter. Today there are synthetic materials very similar to genuine Leather, we must help ourselves with other senses and tools to be able to confirm if it really is Genuine Leather.

That is why we first have to recognize the types of synthetic leather, among the most used are:

  • Cuerina. Used for a long time but on a smaller scale today, it is easily recognizable by a trained eye, its texture gives it away. On the back, the network is noticeable as a network, which makes it fragile to tension and disposable. Products made from this material do not usually last long. It has little plastic smell.
  • Bio leather. Here we start with the problems, but an expert eye would also recognize it with a little difficulty. Its texture is very similar to that of genuine leather, but when it is touched it does not have the consistency of legitimate skin. Its thickness is between 0.8 mm to 1 mm, while Cowhide is between 1.2 mm to 1.8 mm. On the back, the framework is thicker, giving it greater resistance to tension. It has greater durability than the leather. It has little to almost no plastic smell.
  • PU (Poly Urethane) leather. I must admit that this material is almost identical to genuine leather, it even has the imperfections of legitimate leather. It has the matte shine and texture of Full Grain Leather, hardly recognizable if it is only visible synthetic leather; We need help from other senses such as smell, due to its recognizable smell of plastic. Depending on the manufacturer, this material has greater durability than the bio leather. Very soon I will upload a photo with this material.

The fire

The definitive proof. The easiest way to identify leather is through fire. Take the heat source and slowly approach it to the garment or item. If it begins to deform irregularly, it is synthetic leather. If it’s vinyl or plastic, it could even burn.

In contrast, genuine leather will not deform. The skin will contract from the heat but when it cools it will return to its original state. So much so that a flame is used in some types of finishing of the different leather goods. This test is irrefutable but we do not recommend that you use it in a commercial establishment.

The effects could be a call to the fire department or a payment of a garment to the dependent.

Remember that real leather goods are seldom cheap.

A product made entirely of real leather will be quite expensive. They are usually sold at fixed prices. Compare prices and understand the price of real leather, semi-leather and synthetic leather products to understand the differences between them.

Among the leathers, the price of cowhide is the highest due to its durability and ease of tanning. Split leather, which is a lower layer separate from the surface layer, is less expensive than top grain leather or belt.

  • If a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Real leather is expensive.
  • While all real leather items are much more expensive than fake ones, there are actually different types of real leather, all with very different prices.

Finally, we have to be aware that the price of the garment or accessory is a determining factor in its quality. As we have already mentioned at the beginning, genuine leather is much more expensive than artificial leather.

We hope that today’s post has been helpful and that you have learned everything you needed to know to differentiate genuine leather from synthetic leather.

If you are convinced to buy quality items, do not hesitate to visit our website and contact us if you have any questions. We will be happy to assist you. We will wait for you!

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