Old is gold, right? That’s the case with leather as well. The older it gets, the more character it starts to develop. New leather is great too. It is extremely comfortable and is perfect for jackets. However, old leather has some unique advantages that develop with time. It develops a darker color and finish over time. This finish is called ‘Patina.’ So, if you hear the word patina, it simply means the gorgeous finish that leather develops as it ages. Natural leather patina develops with age, the sun, natural body oils, dirt and the environment. Just like wine gets better with time, or old people have more stories to tell, so does leather as it ages.
Leather Has A Different Appearance As It Ages
As leather ages, it starts to develop natural markings on it. This give leather more character. Since leather is made out of skin and is a natural element, it wrinkles like skin would. These markings are usually small but they won’t go unnoticed. They tend to cover the surface and add another element to the look. If you want to wear leather that is unique, you should use your top leather jackets more often so it starts to change its appearance and age quickly!
Aged Leather Is Much Softer Than New Leather
There is a vast difference between the softness of new and old leather. Leather that has been around for longer and is aged is much softer than new leather. This means, a new leather jacket might be a little sturdy but the more you wear it, the softer it will get. You need to break into the leather for it to become softer. If you buy a new pair of shoes, they might hurt you at the beginning but the more you walk in them, the softer they will get. You break into leather the same way. But the good thing is, soft leather doesn’t mean it will tear or rip apart. Leather is designed to last you a lifetime. So, although old leather will be softer, it will continue to last you a long time.
It Has A Different Smell From New Leather
New leather and old leather differ in smell. The older the leather gets, the better it starts to smell. New leather has a very strong smell to but it is more artificial at the beginning. Worn out leather on the hand has a softer, more subtle smell. Most people prefer the smell of old leather compared to the artificial smell of new leather. Which smell you’ll like is obviously subjective but if you like something light and faint then old leather is the way to go.
Vegetable-tanned Leather Has The Best Patina
Patina, as mentioned earlier is the glorious glow of aged leather. If you want that on your leather products you should invest in products made from vegetable-tanned leather. Although you’ll never find a leather jacket made from vegetable-tanned leather, you could buy leather bags, sofas or phone covers made from vegetable-tanned leather. This happens because they have an unfinished surface and is less processed. So, if you’re looking to invest in a leather bag that you’ll want a good natural leather patina on, buy a vegetable tanned leather bag.
Old Leather Is Slightly Stronger Than New Leather
Leather is a strong material in general when compared to any other type of product; cotton or silk. However, the strength of leather varies depending on its age. Old leather is slightly stronger than new leather. You can pull on the leather without causing any damage to it. This happens because old leather has already been through so much, it has been stretched and pulled so many times that it eventually becomes resilient. Since it is stronger and much harder to damage, most people prefer old leather over new leather.
The More You Use Your Leather Product, The Better Patina It Will Have
Finally, this is the crux of the matter. The more you use your leather product, the better natural leather patina it will have. How long it takes to develop the patina depends on how often you use it, among other things. Although, you should be careful with your precious leather products, you shouldn’t keep them in the cupboard. Bring your leather jackets out, and wear them everywhere. The leather will look and smell better. It will become much softer and slightly stronger. The future of your leather jackets is in your hands!