Leather Questions


What Are Enzymes and How Are They Used in Leather?

What Are Enzymes and How Are They Used in Leather?

Enzymes play an important role in the production of leather. From leather jackets and vests to skirts, dresses, belts and more, nearly all leather products are exposed to enzymes during production. Leather consists of animal hide. There are different types of leather. Some types are made of sheepskin, whereas others are made of goat or cowhide. During production, however, manufacturers will expose the animal hide to enzymes. What are enzymes exactly, and how are they are used in leather? The Basics of Enzymes Enzymes are defined as catalytic proteins, meaning they trigger or accelerate chemical reactions. Research has shown that they are able to catalyze over 5,000 types of reactions. While other substances can trigger or accelerate chemical reactions as well, enzymes specifically trigger or accelerate chemical reactions in biological cells, such as animal hide. Animal hide is the foundation of all types of leather. With that said, leather doesn’t consist of raw animal hide. To convert animal hide into leather, manufacturers must process it. Leather processing includes multiple stages. One of the first stages of leather processing is preparing the animal hide for tanning, which includes bathing it in an enzyme solution. The enzymes used in leather production exhibit specific properties. They typically hydrolyze compounds like elastin and casein, for instance. As a result, enzymes can break down certain parts of animal hide. Manufacturers, though, must choose enzymes that are safe for leather. The enzymes used in leather production must not break down or otherwise damage collagen or keratin. Animal hide typically contains collagen and keratin. If broken down, it may become weaker. How Enzymes Are Used in...
Leather vs Suede: What’s the Difference?

Leather vs Suede: What’s the Difference?

Leather and suede are commonly used in the construction of new garments and accessories. You can find jackets, trousers, vests, shoes, belts and handbags made of these materials. Leather, in fact, is one of the most common materials in which jackets are made, whereas suede is commonly used in accessories. While leather and suede may look similar, though, they are two unique materials with their own properties. If you’re thinking about buying a new garment or accessory, you should learn the differences between leather and suede. What Is Leather? Leather is a strong yet soft material that’s derived from animal hide. Most types of leather come from sheep or cow hides. The hides are dehydrated and exposed to one or more chemicals for preservation purposes. A process known as tanning, it’s essential to creating long-lasting leather. Some tanning methods involve the use of vegetable matter, whereas others involve the use of chromium sulfate and chromium salts. Regardless, tanning is the process that converts animal hide into leather. In its default state, animal hide isn’t considered leather. It must be tanned via exposure to vegetable matter or chromium compounds, which will convert it into leather. What Is Suede? Suede is a soft material with a fuzzy and napped finish. Technically speaking, it’s a type of leather. The term “suede” comes from the French word “grants de Suede,” which translates to “gloves from Sweden.” Based on the definition alone, though, you might be wondering what suede is exactly and how it differs from leather. There are many different types of leather. As previously mentioned, leather is simply animal hide that’s tanned....
Standard vs Stretch Leather Jackets: What’s the Difference?

Standard vs Stretch Leather Jackets: What’s the Difference?

Have you heard of stretch leather jackets? If so, you might be wondering how they differ from standard leather jackets. You can find leather jackets in dozens of styles, patterns and colors. With that said, most of them can be classified as either standard or stretch depending on the material from which they are made. Stretch leather jackets are still available in many of the same styles, patterns and colors as their standard counterparts, but they feature a different construction that distinguishes them from standard leather jackets. What Is a Standard Leather Jacket? A standard leather jacket is a traditional form of outerwear consisting of real leather. Real leather, of course, is a soft yet durable material that’s comprised of animal hide. All standard leather jackets are made of this material. There are different types of real leather. Some types of real leather are made of sheepskin, whereas other types are made of deerskin or cowskin. Regardless, standard leather jackets are made exclusively of real leather, which comes from animal hide. The animal hide is tanned and processed, after which it’s used to make standard leather jackets. What Is a Stretch Leather Jacket? A stretch leather jacket is an alternative form of outerwear that’s characterized by a stretch leather construction. Based on their appearance, stretch leather jackets typically look like standard leather jackets. They both consist of an upper-body garment — typically with sleeves — that’s worn over a shirt and other upper-body garments. The difference is that stretch leather jackets are made of stretch leather. To better understand the differences between standard leather jackets and stretch leather jackets,...
What Is Suede Leather? Get the Facts

What Is Suede Leather? Get the Facts

Have you come across a garment made of suede leather? If so, you might be wondering how this material differs from other types of leather. Suede leather still consists of animal hide. All types of leather are made of animal hide — and suede leather is no exception. What is suede leather exactly? The Basics of Suede Leather Also known simply as suede, suede leather is comprised of one or more inner layers of animal hide. Animal hides, of course, typically have multiple layers. Some types of leather are comprised of all of these layers. Suede leather, on the other hand, consists of just one or a few of these layers. More specifically, it consists of the thin inner layers of animal hide. Suede leather is used to make many of the same garments as traditional leather. Whether you’re shopping for a jacket, dress, trousers or any other garment, you can probably find it in suede leather. Suede leather dresses have become particularly popular. In recent years, more and more women have included suede leather dresses in their outfits. Before investing in a suede leather dress — or any other suede leather garment — you should learn the advantages and disadvantages of this material. Advantages of Suede Leather One of the main advantages of suede leather is its soft texture. All types of leather are soft, but suede leather often comes out on top in terms of softness. It has a naturally softer texture than other types of leather thanks to its use of the inner layer or layers of animal hide. Suede leather is suitable for year-round usage....
Chrome-Tanned vs Vegetable-Tanned Leather

Chrome-Tanned vs Vegetable-Tanned Leather

Tanning is an essential leathermaking process. Whether you’re looking to buy a leather jacket, trench coat, trousers or even a dress, it will probably be made of tanned leather. Leather garments such as these aren’t constructed of raw animal hide. Rather, the animal hide used in their construction is exposed to various chemicals for dehydration and preservation purposes. Known as tanning, it promotes long-lasting leather garments that are able to withstand the hands of time. There are different types of tanned leather, however. Two of the most common types include chrome-tanned leather and vegetable-tanned leather. They both contain animal hide that’s processed using chemicals. Nonetheless, chrome-tanned leather isn’t the same as vegetable-tanned leather. They are two unique types of leather with their own respective benefits. To learn more about the differences between chrome-tanned leather and vegetable-tanned leather, keep reading. What Is Chrome-Tanned Leather? The most common type of leather, chrome-tanned leather is characterized by its use of chromium. In other words, it’s made by exposing raw animal hide to chromium salts (and in some casts chromium sulfate). Chrome-tanned leather has been around for about a half-century. Since then, it’s been used to make all types of leather garments and leather products. Chrome-tanned leather simply refers to any type of real leather that’s processed using chromium salts. What Is Vegetable-Tanned Leather? Vegetable-tanned leather is a type of leather that’s made using vegetable matter. More specifically, vegetable-tanned leather is made using vegetable tannins. It’s not exposed to chromium salts or chromium sulfate. As the name suggests, vegetable-tanned leather is made using all-natural vegetable matter. Long before chrome-tanned leather was invented, there...
Leather Leggings vs Leather Pants: What’s the Difference?

Leather Leggings vs Leather Pants: What’s the Difference?

Leather leggings and legging pants are on the rise. They’ve become two of the most popular types of leather trousers on the market. With leather leggings or leather pants, you can take advantage of their stylish appearance and comfortable leather construction. While they may look similar, though, they aren’t exactly the same. Leather leggings and leather pants differ in several ways. By understanding how they differ, you can choose the right type for your fashion needs. What Are Leather Pants? Leather pants are trousers consisting of leather. You can find them in different colors and patterns. Some leather pants are brown, whereas others are black or red. There are even leather pants with two or more colors. Regardless, they are all trousers made of leather, which is tanned and processed animal hide. Some of the most common styles of leather pants include the following: Leather jeansLeather caprisLaced leather trousersLeather biker pants What Are Leather Leggings? Leather leggings are close-fitting — and usually semi-elastic — trousers made of leather. They are available in many of the same colors and patterns as leather pants, and they are also made of leather. Some people, in fact, consider leather leggings to be leather pants. While both garments share a similar appearance and construction, however, they have a few differences. So, how do leather pants differ from leather leggings? The Age Leather pants have been around for a longer length of time than leather leggings. It wasn’t until the past few decades when leather leggings emerged. In comparison, leather pants are many centuries old. Leather has been used in the construction of pants, along...