It's not always easy to tell the difference between genuine and fake leather. If you think you're getting a genuine leather handbag or pair of shoes, it can be disheartening to later learn that you have been deceived. So to help you spot the hot from the not, use the tips below for detecting fake leather.
- Skill level:
Other People Are Reading
Look for a label indicating that the product is leather. Sounds obvious, but it's the most sure-fire way. Real leather products will proudly sport this fact, whereas you know it's a fake if the label reads, "Man made materials." Don't buy a product without a label.
Study the edging where the fabric has been cut. Real leather will have a rough-around-the-edges look and feel to it, but fake leather will look and feel like foam or plastic.
Feel the fabric. Fake leather has an artificially smooth, often plastic feel to it. Depending on the type and quality of leather, real leather can range from course to silky smooth. But the texture will generally be less consistent than fake (since you can't regulate the real thing) and have a suppler feel to it.
Examine for pores on the surface of the leather. Pores on the fake will be in a consistent, repeating pattern, whereas pores on the real thing will be more irregular.
Take a whiff of the product. If it doesn't have that distinct "leather" scent, you can be sure that it's a fake.
Spend some time comparing fake leather products with genuine leather. Once you've seen the difference between the two, you will eventually get good at spotting a faux right away.
Tips and warnings
- Many unscrupulous sellers these days sell knock-off designer handbags, advertising them as the real thing. If you are savvy in recognizing fake leather, you can recognize these knock-off bags. The real things would never come in faux leather.