Leather is a material cherished by many for its flexibility and durability. It is obtained from the tanning of animal skins and several different animals are used in the production of leather. Leather has four basic grains or qualities: full-grain leather, genuine leather and corrected grain leather.
Full-grain leather is the highest quality
It is characterised by a luxurious, smooth surface and has little, if any, defects. It is the most commonly used type of leather. It has not been smudged, sanded or polished to remove natural marks or imperfections from its surface. Its fibres are stable and durable because the grain has not been removed. Prolonged contact with the leather reduces moisture, as the grain is characteristic for breathing. This type of leather does not wear out easily. On the contrary, it develops a patina, i.e. a thin layer that protects the leather from damage caused by wear or corrosion; it also gives the leather an aesthetic appearance. It is used for the production of high quality items.
Aniline leather is the ultimate desirable finish in leather production. It is dyed exclusively with soluble dyes without covering the top with non-soluble pigments or finishing paint. Semi-aniline has a thin protective layer that protects it from stains and wear.
The most common? Top-grain leather
First-grain leather is the second highest quality in the high-end leather product category. Its surface is more malleable and thinner when its layer is separated. Its surface is smoothed and a finishing layer is added to make it less breathable, with a plastic feel that makes it look cooler. It also develops a patina that protects it from damage and corrosion, making it last longer. It has better stain protection and is less expensive than full-grain leather.
Genuine leather is made of real leather. In a class of leather products, genuine leather goods are the lowest quality products. These products are made from leftover leather following the production of high-end products. its price makes it so widely accessible on the market.
Also called grain less. It is a special type of leather that is corrected and adjusted by expert leather craftsmen to improve its functionality and aesthetic qualities. The leathers used to make it do not meet the standards required for the production of aniline and vegetable tanned leathers. Artificial grain has been imprinted on the upper and treated with dyes and colourants. Imperfections are usually removed with sand and then corrected. This type of leather is usually available in shops and is more accessible in price.
As you have seen from the title, we have focused here on the basic types because the world of leather is vast and consists of so many varieties that it is difficult to encapsulate in a single article.