Man brings to light that numerous assortment of animal hides can be processed through multiple predefined natural and artificial tanning processes to manufacture a sturdy material known as Leather. Being scratch resistant and durable, leather is available in multiple types with varied applications. Artificial leather is known as “Faux Leather” which is not long-lasting and is cheaper than the natural one.
Following are the multiple types of leather:
- Full grain leather
- Split leather
- Suede leather
- Regenerated leather or Bonded leather
- Coated leather
- Faux leather
Full Grain Leather
Full grain is rough looking leather with a distinct scent and innate attributes. It can be dyed and can be used as upholstery on furniture. It has very strong consistency, but if required it can be subjected to surface protective coating or sealant to protect it from stains. It is the most extravagant of all the other kinds of leather, therefore, it has been bespoken for the manufacturing of high end luxury products. To remove malformation, the top surface of the leather is coated by sanding which results in “Top Grain Leather”.
The raw hide of the animal is considerably thick when it is removed from the body, so it is strenuous to use in this form. For this purpose, leather is splitted into the usable leather of a greater area. The top coat is known as Top Grain Leather. But keep it in mind that every full grain leather is top grain, but converse is not true! The bottom layer of the split leather is fragile because of the strains during the splitting process. It is treated again to retrieve some of its native stability. It can be embossed and buffed to give the finishing look.
During the splitting processes the original layer of the hide is vanished. To give it an artificial finishing it is either embossed or buffed. When it is buffed on both sides, its surface becomes soft and velvety, this fuzzy splitted leather is known as suede leather. Since it has undergone many splits, it becomes inexpensive. Its soft appearance makes it dominant for the manufacturing of shoes and other wardrobe. Buffing can make it vulnerable and narrow its durability.
Regenerated Leather or Bonded Leather
Regenerated or bonded leather is a compressed, high quality, and sturdy wearing form of leather. Leather scraps and low class fleece is converted into bonded leather to enhance the utility of the available hides. It has an even Matt outlook which makes it highly useful in restaurants and bars. A thick layer of polyurethane is added to low grade or scrap leather to magnify its sturdiness and durability than other inferior quality of leather. Polyurethane layer makes the leather impenetrable against liquids but it can be worn out under long exposure to UV radiations and sunlight.
Faux leather looks like a fabric by its appearance. For this purpose, all-synthetic and fabricated material is used to make it differentiated from genuine leather. Its durability and tear resistance depend upon the manufacturing process and how much it can endure tear and wear. It is the lowest cost leather and is lovable by the animal lovers, who are more biased to wear artificial or synthetic leather products rather than wearing animal skins.
The Prospects of Leather
Leather is one of the preliminary natural materials publicized to men for over 5000 years. It has always marked its importance in all of its forms. It is dominant in the market due to its elegance, strength and native attraction. We should motivate the tanneries to opt for advance methodology of tanning hides, which are ecological and reduce the ill-effects of leather tanning on the environmental factors.