This site has limited support for your browser. We recommend switching to Edge, Chrome, Safari, or Firefox.

Enjoy free shipping on all orders over $250!

Leather & Care

Understanding the difference between vegetable tanned leather and chrome tanned leather–and how to care for each

Vegetable Tanned Leather

Anything on our site listed as "natural", is referring to vegetable tanned leather. 

Vegetable Tanned Leather is a timeless classic that still has no rival. This natural leather will darken and change over time as the leather is exposed to sunlight and handling. To achieve this, animal hides are tanned with a mixture of plant based materials such as tree bark, wood, leaves, fruit, and roots. This process produces leather that is durable, beautiful, and very personal. Vegetable tanned leather is considered "naked", meaning no synthetic top finishes. The nature of this tanning process is what causes the leather to patina with daily wear-and-tear, and to continue to change over time. As so, it will not remain pristine and sleek— exposure to water will create spots (yes, we recommend avoiding rain) and although scratching will likely occur, we do not view these marks as defects. All this to say, we want the carrier of this leather to embrace the unique character this bag will take on. Want to see some examples of our vegetable tanned leather new, and how it has darkened once it's broken in, and why it's our favorite? Check out our instagram. 

Caring for Vegetable Tanned Leather

Avoid exposing your bag to water and moisture. As you carry your bag, it can become necessary to use a gentle cleaner or conditioner specifically for leather, and spills are best cleaned if/as they happen. To apply, rub a very small amount of the treatment on your item using a clean, dry cloth. Let the conditioner soak in for up to one hour. Use another clean cloth to buff dry. Vegetable tanned leather loves to be conditioned and most products will speed up the break-in period, darkening and softening it more quickly. Follow manufacturer instructions and always test on a hidden area first. 

Chrome Tanned Leather

Any leather on our site that has a soft temper or a bright color is chrome tanned leather. 80 - 90% of all finished leather products are made from chrome, or mineral, tanned hides. This quick process utilizes chemicals, salts, and acids to preserve the hides and produces incredibly soft and strong qualities. Chrome tanned leathers can be identified by wide range of colors and their wide variety of textures.

Caring for Chrome Tanned Leather

Chrome tanned leathers can be easily spot treated with a clean damp cloth. Leather cleaning wipes can be easily found at local stores, generally in the shoe section. For stubborn blemishes and abrasions, we suggest contacting a trusted shoe repair or leather repair service in your area.


No more products available for purchase