Does Leather Burn?


If you go out to buy a leather jacket or search for one online, you’d be surprised to see the overwhelming number of types and finishes of the leather. So in order to know better, we must answer the question “How can you tell if it's real leather?” before addressing whether it burns or not.

One of the most common and effective methods to know if the leather is genuine or fake, use fire. Well, we’re not asking you to set up a bonfire, just a spark from your lighter would do. Real leather has a high resistance to fire so it won’t be engulfed in flames and definitely will not melt like plastic. It might char a bit and you’d feel the smell of burnt hair but that’s all. On the other hand, fake leather is made from petroleum and plastic elements which is why it burns immediately. 

Why Does Leather Not Burn?

Why Does Leather Not Burn?
Among all different types of leather, some might be real, some fake and some are even a mixture of real and faux. Real leather is made out of animal hide which has similar characteristics as human skin. It has pores and absorbs moisture which is one of the reasons why it doesn’t catch flames and burns to ashes. If real leather is not maintained properly, it can lead to dryness, cracking, and peeling. This might not only damage the overall appearance of the leather but adversely affect the fire resistance capabilities of it. Hence, keep your leather products well maintained to enjoy them for a long time.

At What Temperature Does Leather Burn?

At What Temperature Does Leather Burn?
Depending on the type of leather and their finish, the temperature at which they start to burn is different. Vegetable-tanned leather is treated with oak bark and other natural elements. It starts to shrink at 390 if placed above the fire for up to 10 seconds and will start to melt around 550. However, chrome leather is tanned using chromium salts. It contains less moisture and natural oils and starts to burn at 450C within 5-8 seconds.

Will A Leather Couch Burn?

Will A Leather Couch Burn?
Contrary to the leather jacket or other clothing items, a leather couch is more vulnerable to irreparable damage. The fact that it’s more exposed to heat, food particles, and water spilling, it can start to show signs of damage pretty quickly. Apart from all this, Sparks or a lit cigarette can leave a scar or so much as a hole in your leather couch. Couches are usually made from split or faux leather instead of real ones. So it’s comparatively easy to repair it once burnt or damaged. Leather polish or paint might not be able to make it as good as new but will serve the purpose.

How To Care For Leather?

How To Care For Leather?
Real leather will not melt or turn into ashes but it will definitely be affected if exposed to too much heat and fire. So to keep your leather accessories as good as new for a long time, take proper care of them. Use proper cleaning products based on the type of leather you’re dealing with and avoid water, dust, direct sunlight, and other heat exposures. It’s better to use a waterproofing spray on the leather surface once in a while. Moisturize your leather product followed by conditioning.