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Article: Why does Leather Patina?

Why does Leather Patina? - Snakehive UK

Why does Leather Patina?

The Patina impact

Patina is often associated with leather, whilst it does also occur on other materials too. But what does it actually mean and why does it occur? Why don’t other materials mature in the same way that leather does?

Darkening and softening of your leather goods is what people call its patina; this develops over time from sunlight, wear and tear, dirt, scratches & scrapes. So, exposure to these elements through usage will of course speed up the patina process. The natural ageing process of patina makes leather a sentimental and high-quality item to own, as the story it’s been on is displayed on its exterior.

This may seem surprising, but people really value leather patina, its seen as a hallmark of high quality and it’s look tells a story of the unique journey the owner has taken it on.

Signs of patina...

How can you tell if patina has developed?

It’s pretty obvious really, more depth in colour, more flexibility and softness in the leather as well as a soft sheen. The more you use your leather item and expose it to its environment, the more its patina will develop!



Why is this a mark of high quality?

Only the highest grades of leather develop rich patina over time, which makes it a visible sign of quality to the user. Plus, the sheen developed from the sun and oil marks from rain paints a picture of the memories you and your leather sidekick have been on, in addition to adding character to your item.


Slowing down the Patina Process:

Some people aren’t so keen on the patina of leather (we personally don’t get why!) But if this is you, here are some tips on how to slow down the ageing process…

  • Storage of your leather

Keep in a ventilated environment without moisture.

  • Sunlight

Avoid too much sun exposure to reduce lightening in colour.

  • Friction and Oil in pockets

Grease from your hands and pockets encourages patina and encourages discolour. Be careful to avoid friction too & not scratch your leather item.


Now, hopefully this provides some insight on the leather patina process, here at Snakehive, we personally love the character and quality it adds to our product, but we’ll leave you to decide your opinion…

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