7 Steps to Find Out if Your Branded Bag is Real Leather

7 Steps to Find Out if Your Branded Bag is Real Leather

Know Your Bag More

It is not always easy to tell whether leather bag uses real or fake leather unless you have been experienced with leathers. Before you buy a branded bag, make sure that you are getting the real deal. You don’t want to pay a huge amount of money only to find out that the bag is not real leather. Below are the 7 simple steps to determine whether the bag is made of real leather or not.

#1 – Smell the Leather Bag

The first step is to smell the handbag. If it is made of genuine leather, the branded bag will have a distinct leathery smell. Jackets, furniture, and boots made of leather also have this smell. You can try to familiarize yourself with the smell and then smell the bag. If it has a different smell or no smell at all, you have imitation leather bag.

#2 – Feel and Touch the Material behind the Lining

Inside Lining

Source: pierotucci.wordpress.com

Touch the branded bag to determine whether it is spongy or stretchy. If it has no velvety texture then it could be a fake leather bag.

#3 – Press the Top Surface

Another way to check the bag is to press the top surface. If there are no wrinkles, then it can either be a fake or a split leather handbag. Split leather is leather that has its surface layer removed from the under layer. It is more affordable but not as durable as full grain leather or top grain leather.

#4 – Examine the Appearance of the Grains

Appearance of Grains

Source: www.pacificleather.com.au

Imitation leather usually has a consistent grain with no natural imperfections. Genuine leather has areas where grain is different from the rest. This is not an infallible test because the manufacturer of the imitation leather could incorporate imperfections into the design to make it look real. Plus, real leather could be buffed and sanded and then impressed with a uniform grain. Manufacturers also use coatings and dyes that can make real leather look like a synthetic one. Leather can also be embossed to create patterns that might create an illusion of fake leather.

#5 – Examine the Structure of Pores

Structure of Pores

Source: www.koinor.com

You should also examine the structure of the pores. If the pores of the leather bag are not intact then it is top grain leather handbag. If the pores are intact then it is a full grain leather handbag.

#6 – Check the Weight of the Leather Bag

Fake leather bags usually weigh less than handbags made of real leather. Most countries require a certain thickness of leather and fake leather is not as thick. Leather is a dense material that makes it heavier.

#7 – Does the Burn Test?

You can burn real leather without damaging it. Take note that the burn test must only be done on top grain and full grain leathers. Branded bag with embossed material is not advised to undergo a burn test.

Burn Test on DUDU Leather Bag

Source: Swee Yee Phan @ Youtube


These are the steps to determine whether the handbag is real or not. You can do these steps if you are buying the branded bag from a brick and mortar store. If you are buying one from an online bag shop, you have to trust the store about the authenticity of the leather. That’s why you should only deal with reputable shops whether it is online or a physical store.

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