What Is Aniline Leather
Table of Contents
What is aniline leather?
Aniline leather is a high-quality leather that uses aniline dyes. The dye is applied after the tanning process, giving the leather its final look or color.
All pure leather comes from animal hide. The tanning process is also the same, but the final output varies because of the dying process. Essentially, there are three types of final outcome. The first is aniline leather, the second is semi-aniline, and the third is pigmented leather.
Of all these three final outputs, the aniline variant is the purest because the process did not change the composition of the leather. In the industry, they also call aniline leather as “untouched.”
Is there a semi-aniline leather?
Yes, there is semi-aniline leather. This leather variant is slightly pigmented. Because of this, the natural grain and pores of the leather are highly visible.
The benefit of semi-aniline is that it is more durable than aniline ones. Aniline leather is completely porous and highly sensitive.
How to tell If leather is Aniline leather?
To identify whether leather is aniline or not, all you must do is take a closer look. Aniline leather is the purest, which means that the leather looks like skin. It also feels like skin.
Aniline leather is almost raw, and it is fragile. It is the most beautiful of all leather because of its natural properties, but it is also the most expensive.
Aniline leather does not have uniform color because the dye used is not a strong type of pigment. And because it is the closes to being natural, it also feels warm to the touch.
Finally, aniline leather absorbs liquid quickly. Drop water to the leather, and if the leather absorbs the water in less than 30 seconds and it forms a dark patch, it is aniline.
Advantages and disadvantages of aniline leather
Here are the advantages of aniline leather:
- Highly natural color; the grains are beautiful and random
- Most aesthetic of all leather types
- Expensive, rare, and processed naturally
- Highly breathable leather, which makes it a good material for garments
Here are the disadvantages of aniline leather:
- Easily gets soiled because it soaks liquid
- Requires high level of maintenance
- The color can vary a lot as it depends on the skin’s natural color
- The defects are visible
As you can see, beauty comes at a cost. We suggest that you only buy aniline leather for products that you do not use often. For example, aniline leather is great for a jacket that you would only use occasionally, but not for daily use.
Aniline is also perfect for book covers and binding, provided that you have the time to wipe it clean and moisturize it as needed. We do not recommend aniline leather for shoes or bags that you use every day.
Aniline leather is the one you want if you want to display beauty, elegance, and taste. However, you must also be prepared to take care of it.
Summary: What is Aniline Leather?
Aniline leather is the purest form of leather. It is what people call “untouched” leather, which means that it is the softest of all. However, this purity comes at a cost. First, the color is not uniform because the process of making it entails that the natural color takes precedence.
Aniline leather is also the most vulnerable, as it is porous. If you buy one, you must take the extra precaution to maintain the leather. Overall, aniline leather is the most expensive but also the most beautiful and of the highest quality.