How to Spot Real VS Fake Leather

How to Spot Real VS Fake Leather

No matter what leather product you’re planning on purchasing, it adds extra peace of mind to know whether you’re paying for the genuine article. Not only for the amount of money you may be paying for ‘genuine leather’ but also for the amount of time you want it to last. Fake leather is notorious for only keeping up appearances until you buy it, then falling apart. Peeling, cracking and losing its shape are some of the common issues that come with fake leather.  

Let’s explore some of the ways to tell real and fake leather apart to avoid these issues in the future.

Multi-coloured leather swatches in spiral


Although it may seem obvious, take a close look at the leather. Real leather has pores, just like our skin, which will have inconsistent patterns. Fake leather may also have these pores but they will often be in consistent or repeating patterns that look fake. If it looks too good to be true it probably is, real leather’s charm comes from the imperfections and inconsistencies it earns throughout its lifetime. 

leather crafting tools


The easiest way to tell if leather is real or fake is through your fingertips. Fake leather will feel smoother, almost like plastic (which is what it often actually is) and cold. Real leather is soft, flexible, almost warm to the touch and stretches. Real Leather is 100% natural, so when you run your fingers across the grain it won’t feel perfectly smooth and uniform. 

Now feel the edges, these are also a good indication of whether or not the leather is real. Fake leather will have smooth, plastic like edges whereas genuine leather innately has a more natural, rough edge.

A-SLIM wallets in many colours arranged in a circular pattern


Authentic leather has a distinct, almost iconic smell that cannot be artificially reproduced. As real leather is processed animal skin, it comes with a strong scent that some find to be the best smell in the world. Fake leather lacks this scent, it can be completely odourless or have an unpleasant chemical smell from the synthetic materials they’re made from.

a stack of rolls of leather

Check the label

Genuine leather will be proudly stated on the label, this will be the easiest way to determine its authenticity. You may see ‘100% real leather’, ‘full/top grain leather’ or ‘genuine leather’ on a products label. These are real leather products. Faux or synthetic leather will be visible on the label when a product is not genuine, if you see ‘synthetic’, ‘man-made material’ or ‘polyester’ this means that the leather is fake.

close up of leather symbol/ sample tag

Check the Price

It’s no surprise that real leather is more expensive than synthetic leather, as we’ve seen above there are very noticeable differences between the two. Processed from real animal skin, genuine leather’s more expensive price tag is a mark of quality. Built to last, with added charm and character, genuine leather is the investment that is worth your attention and won’t let you down. 


At A-SLIM we believe in using only the highest quality, full-grain genuine leather. You can see the quality and uniqueness of each piece of leather reflected in our products, making sure our wallets last a lifetime and giving your pocket what it deserves. 

Check out our collections here