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Real Leather vs Fake Leather: How To Tell Them Apart

Real Leather vs Fake Leather: How To Tell Them Apart

“How to tell real leather from fake leather?” This is a fairly common concern for those who are planning to buy leather for the first time. However, there is no need to worry. We will help you how to well real leather from fake leather apart from one another. With these simple tips and tricks, you will feel like a leather expert in no time. Telling them apart will never be a problem ever again.

how to tell real leather or fake leather duffel bag
The Dagny Weekender

Telling Real Leather From Fake: Why Is It Important?

Before we go on talking about how to tell real leather from fake let us first talk about the reason why you should tell them apart.

It is amazing what science can do. Because of science, we can replicate leather without using animal skin. These copies are known as fake leather. However, they are better known as faux leather. Faux leather looks like real leather. Likewise, it feels like real leather. However, faux leather is not as good as real leather. Real leather is strong, durable, and it ages with beauty. While faux leather feels and looks similar it is not as strong and as durable as real leather.

There are also issues when it comes to using faux leather. While both are prone to wear and tear, faux leather tends to crack and peel off. While these problems also occur for real leather, it is likely to occur especially with proper care. It is important to tell real leather from fake before these problems occur.

Another reason why it is important to tell real leather from fake leather is because of the many ambiguous marketing terms used by companies to sell their products. For example, it is a common practice to brand a product as genuine leather or “made with genuine leather”. This is however often made to mislead consumers. The truth is these products are only partly made with real leather. Therefore, it is always important to tell real leather from fake and get what you pay for. At Steel Horse Leather, we only use Full Grain Crazy Horse Leather for our handmade leather bags.

A Faux Leather Hand Bag

Tips and Tricks

When the time comes when you decide to invest in leather make sure to buy the real thing. Avoid those misleading marketing schemes and get what you pay for. Here are some tips and tricks on how to tell real leather from fake leather.

Check The Label

This may be one of the first things that you should do when trying to buy leather. It may seem obvious but it actually helps. Leather manufacturers take pride in what they produce. Therefore, it is only right to tag or label their products as real leather. If the label says “100% leather” or “full-grain/top-grain leather” or “genuine leather” then you are on the right track. Fake leathers also have labels and tags on them. Some may truthfully say that it is made with synthetic materials. If you see “man-made material” on the label it is a sign that it is fake leather.

Just a reminder however that checking the label will guarantee that the leather is 100% real. This is because companies like to mislead their consumers. Some might have labels such as “made with genuine leather” but are not purely real leather. Therefore, while check the label is a good practice it is sometimes not enough.

Check The Price Tags

Check the price. While everybody loves a good deal, sometimes they are too good to be true. Of course real leather is much more expensive than faux leather.

Be Intimate With The Leather

Another way of telling real leather from fake leather is by using your basic senses. While the goal of faux leather is to imitate real leather the best they can there are still things it cannot copy.

Look At The Leather

Sometimes telling them apart is obvious especially by just looking at it. If you look close enough you will see the difference between real leather and fake leather. For real leather, you will notice that its surface structure is not completely uniform. It will often have scars, blemishes, and other imperfections. This is because it is made of animal skin. And they say that no animal skin is exactly the same.

Fake leather on the other hand will have a uniform surface. This is because it is made from a machine. You will notice that fake leather will have a uniform texture pattern. It can sometimes be deceiving therefore you should also rely on your other senses to help you tell real leather from fake.

Touch The Leather

While faux leather tries to feel as similar to real leather you can still tell them apart. Real leather is an organic natural material. Therefore it will not be as smooth as you think. If you notice, real leather is like your skin. Thus it will definitely stretch and have wrinkles on it. This is important because sometimes faux leather will give off that wrinkly and rugged look which can sometimes be deceiving. Better confirm the wrinkles by feeling them.

Smell The Leather

Next is by smell. Faux leather will most likely smell like plastic. This is because it is made of synthetic materials such as PVC. If you smell plastic or a chemical odor coming from the leather then it probably is fake.

Real leather on the other hand will have a distinct “leathery” smell. Since it is organic it will definitely not smell like plastic.

Real Leather vs Fake Leather
Dagny Weekender - 100% Full Grain Leather

If you wish to learn more about faux leather, PU leather, and bonded leather please click on the following link to be redirected to our Journal.