Pure Leather vs Genuine Leather: Difference and Comparison

Leather is one of the most popular things which is used widely across multiple industries for multiple purposes. Leather is used for fashion purposes, such as for making footwear, bags and purses, clothing, furniture-making purposes, and more.

Leather is made up of the skin of animals, such as buffaloes, pigs, tigers, and more. 

Key Takeaways

  1. Pure leather, or full-grain leather, is the highest quality leather made from the top layer of animal hide and retains its natural markings and grain.
  2. Genuine leather is lower-quality leather that has been sanded, buffed, or otherwise treated to remove imperfections and create a more uniform appearance.
  3. Pure leather is more durable and ages better than genuine leather, but it is also more expensive due to its higher quality and natural characteristics.

Pure Leather vs Genuine Leather

A high-quality leather or leather available in its purest form is called pure leather. Pure leather is expensive. The making of pure leather is a time taking process. A low-quality leather is called genuine leather. Genuine leather can be made in less time. The durability of genuine leather is low. The lifetime of genuine leather can be three to six months.

Pure Leather vs Genuine Leather

Pure leather is also known as real leather. It is the purest form of leather which is made by tanning the skin and rawhide of the animal from which leather is to be extracted.

Since real leather is the purest form of leather, it is known to be quite expensive as compared to the rest of the types of leather.

The word genuine might affect the impression one can have in terms of the quality of genuine leather. That is because genuine refers to something good and real.

However, in the case of genuine leather, it is low-grade quality leather that is meant for low-quality products and for people who can’t afford high-quality leather.

Comparison Table

Parameters of comparisonPure leatherGenuine leather
QualityPure leather is the purest form of leather. Genuine leather is low-grade quality leather.
ProcessThe process to make pure leather takes longer duration of time. The process to make genuine leather takes a shorter duration of time.
DurabilityPure leather is more durable as compared to genuine leather. Genuine leather is less durable as compared to pure leather.
ToughnessPure leather is tougher as compared to genuine leather. Genuine leather is less tough as compared to pure leather.
Life expectancyPure leather lasts for a longer duration of time as compared to genuine leather. Genuine leather lasts for a shorter duration of time as compared to pure leather.

What is Pure Leather?

The process of making pure leather is quite extensive and takes a lot of effort, which is one reason why pure leather is so expensive.

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The process in the manufacturing of pure leather includes three different steps: preparation, tanning, and crusting.

The first step includes different preparation stages such as soaking the skin of the animal, removing the hairs from the skin, liming the skin, and then further delimiting, beating the skin, bleaching it, and finally pickling it.

The first stage, which is the preparation of the leather, can take up anywhere from a minimum of 7 days to a maximum of 30 days.

The second step is to tan the skin of the animal. This process is done to stabilize the several different processes occurring in the skin, such as thermal, chemical, microbiological, and more.

Moreover, the process of tanning of the skin also stabilizes all the proteins that are stored in the skin, which are the major cause of the conduction of all the processes in the skin.

One of the major proteins which are stabilized by the process of tanning is collagen.

The final step is known as crusting, where the leather is given colors, lubricants, and more. It can involve several other processes as well, such as whitening the leather, dyeing, shaving, and more.


What is Genuine Leather?

Genuine leather comes after top-grain leather and full-grain leather in terms of quality. Since genuine leather is not pure leather, instead of a synthesized form of leather with a very little amount of animal skin in it, genuine leather is quite affordable.

Almost all the products that mention or claim that they are made of leather and are cheap means they are. Most probably made up of genuine leather.

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Since genuine leather is artificially synthesized leather with extremely low quality, it can’t withstand high temperatures and pressure conditions, unlike pure leather.

Moreover, genuine leather tears off in a very short duration of time. On average, genuine leather lasts for about a minimum of 3 months to a maximum of 6 months in most general cases.

Generally, genuine leather can be found in cheap belts, shoes, and purses. Moreover, since genuine leather is artificially synthesized leather, it has more varieties, colors, designs, patterns, and more such things.

Genuine leather is manufactured in multiple thin layers and all the layers are then glued together to make a thick layer of leather. If the glue used is of low quality, it can also tear off the leather.

genuine leather

Main Differences Between Pure Leather and Genuine Leather

  1. Pure leather is the highest quality leather. On the contrary, genuine leather is the lowest quality leather.
  2. Pure leather lasts up to years, that is, for about 5 to 10 years on average. On the other hand, genuine leather lasts for about a couple of months, that is, for about 3 to 6 months on average.
  3. A wider range of products can be made out of pure leather. On the contrary, only a fixed range of products are made up of genuine leather.
  4. High-end products are made up of pure leather. Whereas, only general or local products are made up of genuine leather.
  5. Pure leather is made entirely out of animal skin. On the other hand, genuine leather is made up of artificial chemicals.
Difference Between Pure Leather and Genuine Leather
  1. https://www.cabdirect.org/cabdirect/abstract/19661100727
  2. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10643380590521436

Last Updated : 25 July, 2023

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