What You Should Know About Leather Production Processes


We encounter the use of leather in many areas of our lives, from the leather jacket we wear to the chair we sit on, from the wallets we use to the shoes we wear. It is very important for all of us that all leather products we use are long-lasting and durable. Well, do you know how the real leather used in these products that we use frequently in our daily life is produced and what stages it goes through?

Leather materials are obtained by going through certain stages of animal raw leathers. The leather production process basically consists of 3 sub-processes. The first of these is the preparation stage, the second is tanning and the third is shelling. The production process of all genuine leathers proceeds in these 3 stages. The fact that raw animal hide goes through all of these stages with care and meticulousness increases the quality of the leather to be obtained.

Due to the fact that there are many different types of leather, there are differences in the production processes. We share with you in detail below which stages it basically progresses.

1. Conservation: It is the process that covers the temporary transportation and storage of raw animal hides. This step can be skipped if the place where the product will be processed, namely the tannery, is close to the slaughterhouse. However, if there is a distance between two places, it is a stage that is valid for all animal leathers except reptile leather.

2.Preparation Procedures: The raw animal hide is primarily cleaned of dirt, blood, salt and feathers. At this stage, by applying some chemical processes, the collagen structure of the leather is opened and fleshed out. When this stage is over, the leathers are ready for the tanning step.

3. Tanning: This stage covers the process of processing animal leathers and hides to produce leather. Tannery is the name given to the place where these processes are carried out. Leather tanning is the process of permanently changing the protein structure of the leather, making it more durable and less susceptible to deterioration and colouration. Leather tanning processes are carried out by different methods such as chrome tanning, aldehyde tanning, aluminum tanning, vegetable tanning.

4.Finishing: After tanning, processes are started for the properties desired to be given to the leather. At this stage, the desired dyes and oils are applied. After all these stages are completed, it is now passed to the final touch step. Several healing processes are applied to protect the leather and increase its usage performance. Afterwards, a final film consisting of several layers is used to create colors and patterns suitable for the area where it will be used.

What Are The Factors That Cause Leather Deterioration?

The most important step of the leather production stage is “tanning”. Incorrect or incomplete methods applied at this stage may cause deterioration of the leather. During the tanning process, if the leather is not properly protected, deterioration may occur. We can consider the factors that cause deterioration of the leather under 5 different main headings.

1. Reasons Originating from the Production Process of the Leather

2. Storage/storage of raw animal hides in unsuitable conditions

3. The chemicals used in the process are not suitable for the leather.

4. Technical errors in mechanical interventions

5. Other Factors Affecting the Deterioration of the leather:

a. Humidity


c.Light / Direct sunlight

d. Polluted air

e. Usage Area of  leathers

f. Metals with which it is in contact

g. Wood etc. with which it is in contact. other surfaces

How Can We Protect The Leather And Use It For A Long Time? Leather is a difficult material to protect and store. Due to its organic structure, regular maintenance and taking preventive measures will prolong the use of the leather. It is important for protection and long-term use that the leather is handled with care, meticulousness and correct steps at every stage from the moment the animal is bathed. Protecting leather products consists of three basic stages. Correct production, storage and regular maintenance. With the right storage conditions and regular maintenance, you can use your leather products for many years in a healthy way.