Why I Prefer Real Leather For Bags And Shoes

It is slightly controversial nowadays, and I thought back and forth about the issue, mulled over pros and cons. Finally, I decided that there, I am going to say it: I have become disenchanted with "fashion items" like shoes, bags and sometimes belts made from PU leather, pleather, vegan leather or so called man-made leather. Because in my experience, in the majority of cases, it doesn't hold a candle to the real deal.

Why, after several years of trying with man made leather, I prefer real leather most of the times when it comes to shoes and bags | Funky Jungle - Style & Life Blog

I've stated in my post "12 Pieces for my Wardrobe" that I was looking for a new larger sized bag in black because mine (currently PU) was starting to show some serious peel wear and I think I mentioned in some other post before that several other larger bags I had aquired in the past two years didn't make it very far. One actually didn't last me a full month. What they had in common? They were all made of leather substitutes.

One had the stitching holes, where the hook for the long strap was attached to the main bag, ripping after only a short time of use, so I couldn't carry it over the shoulder anymore. Another one of them started to chip & crack as soon as 3 weeks after buying it. Yes, I didn't pay a huge amount of money on it, but it was still substantial since I'm on a budget. Besides the monetary factor it is simply waste. Buying bags and having to toss them so soon after is a huge waste of resources and that is something I utterly despise. The same goes for shoes. And quite frankly the normality of buying disposable but not biodegradable crap and adding happily to the landfills is disgusting. I want my stuff to last me at least a couple of years.

Well, the thing is, real good quality leather, from a great source and manufactured well, usually holds. And holds. And holds. A couple of years. Then some more. This bag? Still going strong. The sandals I wore here? Going into their third year now, they have only some light scratching. These boots, bought in 2014? Not a hole in sight, I will just have to replace the heel these days.

Yes, they show wear, but you know what's great? If you treat your leather right, it gets better with age, not worse, forming a beautiful patina. And you can often repair leather goods like shoes & bags. All you need is a good cobbler. Which leads me to Samuel Vimes (a character from Terry Pratchett's Discworld series) Theory of Economic Injustice which can be summarized as "Rich people are rich because they can buy a good pair of boots that holds them 10 years and thus they spend less money in the long run". That's maybe a bit simplistic, but the idea behind it is that if you invest in a good piece that stays with you, you will save money in the end. And contribute to less waste, as you won't need to toss as many shoes in the mean time.

Now none of the pro arguments for leather were new to me. But I had wanted to give fake leather an honest try because of the negative aspects of using real leather.

What I didn't know was that there are significant differences in quality between leather and leather. I mean sure I knew, sort of. I mean there's differences in quality for everything, isn't there? But I didn't know what full grain leather means or that "genuine leather" is a term used for stamped & dyed lesser quality parts.

Full grain leather on the other hand is the technical wording used for leather that is made from the top layer of the hide. It's the best in terms of durability and as far as I understood it the part that forms the patina. So it would always be the preferable choice for items like bags, shoes and jackets (remember, I don't own one). And if you want to make sure to get the best full grain leather, get it from a happy cow as the conditions in which the animal is raised and what is fed to it impact the qualities of its skin.

Why I prefer real leather most of the times when it comes to shoes and bags | Funky Jungle - Style & Life Blog

*Sponsored post. Opinion is my own after years of experience*



  1. look great I too love real leather there is just no substitute
    come see us at http://shopannies.blogspot.com

  2. Nothing beats that smell of real leather

  3. Totally agree! Great post. - Stephanie | www.theborrowedbabes.com

  4. Da fällt mir gerade auf, dass ich gar nichts aus echtem Leder habe. Eigentlich immer nur Kunstleder :-*

    Melanie / www.goldzeitblog.de

  5. Great post dear!

  6. I have real leather items that literally last me for ever that I have had around 6- 7 years since i Started realy shopping for myself. Only a few items, such as a Bags, shoes and a newly acquired leather jacket (only 1 year old). And the quality of real leather is not comparable to that of 'fake' leather. so i agree.

  7. Amazing post!



Thank you for sharing your throughts!