When looking for the best material options for your leather goods, goat leather may be one of the finest choices. Goat skin leather has been used since primeval times to make clothing, footwear, rugs, and bookbinding. It has unique qualities, such as incredible durability, which makes it a worthwhile material.
Whether you are looking for a clear cut feature comparison of goat leather with other animal skin leathers, or frequently asked questions regarding it, we have compiled it all here. Read on to know all about goat leather so that you can choose it confidently.
What Are Goat Hides?
Goat hides are the skins of goats procured to make leather, a high-in-demand material. They are a by-product of the meat industry around the globe. Goats are livestock mammals abundantly found in the Asian regions, and their meat and milk is consumed in huge quantities across the world. China, India, and Pakistan top the list of countries where goats are commonly found.
If we consider the fact that goats are animals who live and survive in extreme climates, it's easily understood why goat leather is known for its hard wearing quality and tensile strength. The soft and flexible skin of goats keeps them warm, and is highly resilient to abrasion.
To procure leather from raw hides of goat, excess fat and tissue is scraped off, and the skin is then thoroughly washed to make it ready for tanning. Tanning preserves the hide and dyeing and finishing process turns it into usable leather. When it comes to type of tanning for goat leather, both chrome tanned and vegetable tanned ones are popular and used for specific purposes.
What is Goat Leather?
Goat leather is one of the top most used leather around the world. It is the skin of a goat that goes through tanning and finishing procedures to prevent rot and turn it into a usable material. It is also known as Moroccan leather, as goat hides were once sourced primarily from Morocco.
Although thin, the goat leather is extremely durable. Identify goat leather with its unique grainy texture that looks like compact little pebbles and distinctive ridges. The leather feels splendidly soft and lightweight.
Goat skin leather is one of the most supple leather. It is highly flexible due to the presence of waxy lanolin. Lanolin also gives goat leather its distinctive water resistance which other types of leather lack. Additionally, lanolin is a naturally healing substance, and adds to the beautiful patina that a goat leather product acquires over the years.
Being porous, goat hide leather is highly breathable, which means a goat skin jacket without an insulating lining can be worn in spring, or even moderate summers.
Different types of goat leather, such as goat nappa leather, goat suede, and Chevreau are used to make clothing and smaller accessories such as goatskin leather bag or wallet.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Goatskin Leather
Here are the pros and cons of goat leather which you can read before weighing in on whether to buy it or not.
- As goat skin is quite common, goat leather products are affordable.
- It wins in terms of durability. Ancient artefacts, such as a thousand plus years old Bible binded with goat leather found in good condition are proof of the longevity of goat skin leather.
- Full grain Morocco leather is synonymous to premium quality that lasts for decades and ages beautifully.
- Due to the presence of lanolin, goat skin leather is very flexible and soft.
- It is also a drapey material. Jackets, pants, skirts, and coats made with goat skin look very elegant and stylish.
- A light drizzle won’t harm your goat leather clothing, accessories or shoe uppers as opposed to other types of leathers as it is water resistant.
- Due to goat leather’s quality of changing with the weather, clothing made with it can be worn season after season.
- It is a thin leather, and can be worked upon with ease if a product requires precision.
- Goat skin cannot match the tensile strength of cowhide.
- Smaller in size than cowhide. For things that need to be designed with large panel sizes, using goat skin leather may be challenging.
- Being thin, it may not be suitable for harsh winters.
Comparing Goat Leather with Other Leathers
Read on the individual comparison to learn how goat leather is different from other types of animal skin leathers.
Goatskin Vs Cow Leather
Both goatskin and cow leather have a considerable tensile strength, but the latter definitely wins the prize for endurance. Goat leather is softer, breathable, water resistant, more flexible and thinner. Whereas cow leather is not much flexible, thick, warm, and heavier. Cow skin is larger than goat skin, which makes the cow leather comparatively more versatile in terms of usage.
Goatskin Vs Lambskin Leather
There is one point of commonality between lambskin leather and goat skin leather, and that is flexibility. However, lambskin is very delicate and hence not a good choice for products that are intended to be used on a long term. Goat skin has an edge when it comes to strength. Goat skin is also more thicker, and warmer than lamb leather.
Goatskin Vs Calfskin Leather
Calfskin leather, just like cowhide, is known for its durability, which surpasses that of goat leather. However, it is not as soft and flexible as goat skin, and is heavier in weight. Calfskin leather is also costlier as its procurement is less common than cowhide and goat hide.
Goatskin Vs Sheepskin Leather
If you want a more soft texture and flexibility, sheepskin beats goatskin leather in that category. However, goat hide makes a more water resistant leather that is also heavier and more durable than sheepskin.
How To Clean Goat Leather
Goat leather is an exclusive material, and requires appropriate measures for its cleaning and maintenance. When cleaning a goat leather product, assess whether it needs mild cleaning or whether it's time to pass it on to a professional cleaner.
To get rid of dust, mild stains, or general cleaning, make a solution of one part distilled vinegar with water. Dip a microfiber cloth in the solution and wring it well. Rub the cloth gently over the goat skin product, emphasizing a bit over areas that have stains. Take a clean and dry cloth, and wipe it dry.
If your leather jacket needs a thorough cleaning and is soiled badly, it is better to get it cleaned by a professional leather cleaner. They take special care to revive the leather and make it look like new once again.
After cleaning the leather, make sure you use a good quality leather conditioner to restore its softness and prolong its life.
How To Soften Goat Leather
With frequent use, a goat leather good may lose its softness and feel dry. A tried and tested way to revive its softness is to apply a natural oil (lanolin oil). Make sure you rub it well with a piece of lint free cloth. To protect goat leather from drying, regularly apply a leather conditioner. Conditioning keeps the goatskin leather soft and in good shape for many years.
If your goat leather jacket gets wet due to rain, dry it completely in natural air. If it feels dry and hard afterward, apply 100% pure lanolin on it for a while. Wipe the excess oil off with a microfiber cloth. This will leave the jacket as soft as it was when you first bought it.
Always keep your goat leather product in a breathable muslin cover to avoid dust accumulation and excessive drying.
1. What Is Leather Made From Goatskin Called?
There was a time when goatskin leather was sourced only from Morocco, so it also goes by the name of Moroccan leather.
2. What Are The Uses Of Goat Leather?
Jackets, shoes, bags, hats, and gloves made with goat leather are quite popular. Bookbinding, carpet binding, and rugs made of goatskin are hugely popular.
Many artisans prefer soft and flexible goat leather to create the inner lining of products as well, such as boxes, boots and bags.
3. Is Goatskin Leather a Good Choice?
Goat skin leather has exceptional qualities, such as softness, water resistance, ability to withstand wear and tear, and a grainy texture which is suitable for diverse uses.
4. Is Goatskin Leather Expensive?
As goat skins are readily available as a by product of the food industry, the cost of goat leather is relatively lower than lambskin or deerskin. The price point of a goat leather product also depends upon the grade of the leather.
5. Is Goatskin Leather Of Good Quality?
Full grain goat leather is of the highest quality, giving you the benefits of durability and strength. Goat suede leather is also a good option as it lasts for years if maintained well.
6. Is Goat Leather Durable?
The high tensile strength, flexibility, and water resistance of goat leather make it a highly durable material that can stand the test of time.