Leather: Genuine or Fake?

How to Identify Real Leather?

LEATHER STAMP: The official symbol of genuine leather. Every Leather made product must have cut-out of the above symbol. The upper surface of cutout is similar to the product’s surface, the back portion should be rough with tiny but soft piles. Look for Impact Print.

There is nothing more infuriating than paying big bucks for leather furniture, footwear or clothing and realizing you have been duped when it is too late.

Authentic Leather:
There is nothing like the smell and feel of real leather. Real leather gives an aura of luxury and prestige. Because no two animal hides are exactly the same, each piece of authentic leather has unique natural characteristics. The leather becomes softer and more attractive over time, which makes it more comfortable.

Leather also has a soft, yet strong texture, making it hard-wearing. Many real leather products are also treated to help prevent stains. Leather is easy to take care of when maintained properly; it only needs a regular wiping with a clean, damp cloth.

There is a real racket for faux leather, leather look-alikes and sometimes you can’t tell for sure what you are paying for. There are several rather easy tests you can use to verify you have just bought genuine leather.

1. Touch the jacket, footwear or furniture. Feel the leather up and down and see if you can differentiate more than one type of substance. Real leather will feel like it came from one single source and will not feel as though it’s a blend of multiple synthetic fibers.

2. Smell the stuff. Leather has a very distinct smell and you should be able to pick up the scent in an instant. If you are not sure, find a product which is of leather and introduce yourself to the aroma. The smell is a sweet but rugged wooden flavor. It is because we use several chemicals to turn a hide into leather.

3. Look for the Genuine Leather Stamp like in pic above. You will find “Genuine Leather” written on stamp as Impact-Print. No fake leather can bear Impact Printing.

Note the rough edges, texture and Impact Print.

4. Besides Impact Printing. The most reliable test you can go for is to examine the surface for the tiny pores in a random pattern, we all know that skin has tiny holes for breathing and secration of fluid to cool the body at certain temperature. Make sure, the pores are not in certain pattern. You will also find the random texture on the surface.

Have a closer look at this genuine leather swatch. You can easily notice the random pattern of pores and net of lines.

5. Look at the cost. If you are paying several hundred Rupees for a jacket that you know should cost more than some thousands, it could be an indicator of a phony.

To test any leather for its realness – try to burn it (use lighter or burning match’s flame tip). if it shrinks and makes no hole its real. Artificial leather with other material will certainly burns out with hole.

For your #handbag; find a corner/edge of bag where you can try to burn and cannot be seen distinctly so it does not damages the look of bag.

Distinctly, reverse the strap of bag where there should a stitch or a joint. Use lighter (cigarette lighter is best) at its smallest flame and on top of it place the leather part of your bag (approach the flame slowly) and look if the leather is shrinking. As i said, if it shrinks and doesn’t make hole its a pure leather if not you are fooled off.

Please be cautious of burning yourself. If you are buying anything pure #leather material and try doing this by asking them. If the material is real they will let you do it other wise they won’t allow because they know that material is fake.

Share your Leather Shopping Experience with me.

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About Shabab Khan

A Journalist, Philanthropist; Author of 'The Magician', 'Go!', 'Brutal'. Being a passionate writer, I am into Journalism and writing columns, news stories, articles for top media house. Twitter: @khantastix khansworld@rediffmail.com
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4 Responses to Leather: Genuine or Fake?

  1. Amar Naik says:

    thanks for enlightening


  2. Wow ! Very useful post for me .. I was actually trying to find out these facts online a few days ago. We’ve a Leather Expo here in Kolkata and I wanted to buy some goods but was not sure how to check out their credibility ..Thanks a lot for ..now can use your tips..( remember I’ll blame you if they arrest me for trying to burn their goods ) :-P :-D


  3. They won’t let you go for a Burn Test in case of PVC, Ultra-Suede, P-Leather (these are leather look alikes). We all know Chinese dominance in grey market, see if you find something written in Chinese on product, if yes, just reject it because Leather Council Of India does not permit bulk import of leather from China.
    Although burn test is most reliable, you can confidently go for another test if not comfortable with little flame. Genuine Leather good must carry a STAMP (like in pic) which should have Impact Printed “Genuine Leather” over it. Remember, no fake leather can bear Impact Print.
    -OR make a drop of water fall on the good’s surface, you will find the drop rolls down like a pearl in case of Fake Leather. Genuine Leather would absorb the drop in a while.
    Any query is welcome on our Fb Page. LIKE PAGE.
    Best Regards.


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