WHAT TYPE OF LEATHER DO YOU HAVE?
Whether it's the new couch you just bought or the hand-me-down
ottoman from your mother-in-law, furniture made with leather can be
found throughout the house. Without proper care and protection,
leather can become worn out, prone to tear, and even fade due to UV
exposure. This blog post will educate you on 5 of the most common
pieces of leather including an Infographic to help identify the
types you may have.
1. Aniline (also known as Natural) (A)
The surface of this leather has been colored with transparent
dyes. This transparency is similar to looking at a piece of stained
wood, whereas the grain stays natural and visibly distinguishable.
Aniline leather will have imperfections and differences, just as
fingerprints are different for each individual. This difference is
nature's signature and assurance that every hide is one of a kind.
These leathers have minimal surface protection and thus tend to
show the effects of usage such as wear, scratches, UV exposure,
etc. To maintain the natural beauty of aniline leather it is
mandatory to establish a routine of cleaning and protection.
Leather Protector should be applied right at the beginning of
usage. Cleaning and protection should then be done every six
months, even more often on high traffic areas.
- Looks natural
- Good touch
- Natural grain and marking
2. Semi-Aniline (A)
This leather is covered with a lightly pigmented coating on
which transparent and brilliant colors are over sprayed to
reconstruct the natural appearance of the leather. Since the
coating is thin, it offers only minimal protection, so an
application of Leather Protector is recommended.
- Natural grain surface
- Good look and feel
- Improved light fastness
- More practical than full aniline
3. Pigmented/Top Coated (P)
This is the most widely used finishing technique. The finish
consists of an opaque basecoat of pigmented resins followed by a
protective topcoat. The natural color of the leather is completely
covered. Therefore, pigmented leather can be identified by its
uniform color. It is ideal for high use items like furniture or
automotive seats, especially when you want your kids to use them
"trouble-free". With the aid of Mohawk Professional Leather Care
products, these leathers are easily maintained. If restoration is
necessary, full re-coloring is possible.
Two-tone leather is another form of a pigmented finish. In this
case, the opaque base coat is topped with a second color, often
with an aniline coating, creating a transparent additional color
that can be either applied as a consistent toner or in patterns of
light and dark areas. Swirled and glazed patterns are common
- Consistent color
- Excellent lightfastness
- Less expensive and easy to produce
- Good defect coverage
- Easy maintenance
4. Nubuck (N)
This leather is actually Aniline leather that has been sanded to
give it a fine, velvety surface. It should not be confused with
suede, which is the flesh side of leather. The look and feel of
nubuck leather is incomparable for low use applications where
elegance is desired. To properly care for nubuck, it is important
to adhere to a routine of protection followed by cleaning. This
regimen should begin as soon as the piece is put into use and
continued at regular intervals throughout the life of the piece.
Mohawk has specific products for the care and preservation of
nubuck leather. It is important to use these specialized Nubuck
products on Nubuck leathers.
5. Pull-Up (X)
These are waxy and oiled leathers. These two related types of
leather are called "pull up," a phrase originally used to describe
the effect on a type of leather also known as "Timberland" after
that well-known footwear producer made this type of article famous.
These leathers lighten when stretched, bent or "pulled up." They
are categorized as natural because they do not have a thick
- ·Good touch and feel
- Develops unique distressed look
Come back later in March when we will discuss how to clean
and protect your leather!