The leather used to make dress shoes is extremely important.
It will hands-down decide the quality, comfort, and appearance of the shoes.
That’s why it’s crucial you become well-educated on different types of leather, their benefits, disadvantages, and more.
This will ultimately allow you to make a better purchasing decision that doesn’t end up in regret and having to return your pair.
That’s exactly why we’re going to be teaching you about calfskin leather today. We’ll be covering what it is, the benefits of choosing it, and more.
Calfskin Leather Guide
What is calfskin leather?
Calfskin leather, as you could guess by the name, is leather made from a calf. It’s used for a variety of products besides shoes like jackets, wallets, watch bands, and more. Calfskin is easily one of the most desired forms of leather because of it’s amazing texture, soft touch, and long-lasting durability. Check out our guide to the best 17 mens leather jackets to see examples.
Is calfskin leather durable?
Yes, calfskin is more durable than most other forms of leather because it contains more collagen. Collagen is an amino acid which makes up skin and helps it remain strong and youthful. Aged leather, while it has its benefits in terms of function and beauty, tends to more stiff and susceptible to damage. Calfskin, on the other hand, can withstand weather, physical touch, and damage thanks to its hardiness.
Is calfskin leather soft?
Calfskin leather is some of the softest leather available because, once again, it contains higher amounts of collagen and the leather itself is much younger. It doesn’t have the time to age to become deeply textured and rustic, making it extremely soft and smooth to the touch.
Calfskin leather advantages
There are many advantages you should be aware of before purchasing calfskin shoes or any product for that matter. They include the following.
It Molds To Your Feet
Since calfskin ages better than wine, the leather will mold to your feet over time. The collagen and supple nature of the leather will give your shoes a better fit the more you wear them. This also means that calfskin lather is much more comfortable. Unlike other types of leather, calfskin will make your feet like you’re walking on clouds. Many other types of leather are stiff even when they are broken in. You won’t have to worry about that with calfskin.
It Lasts Longer Than Other Leathers
Thanks to the increased amount of collagen and fibers that make up calfskin leather, it lasts much longer compared to other forms. This means that whether you purchase calfskin shoes, a belt, wallet, or other products, it’s going to last longer and potentially save you money in the long term. Let me explain.
If you were to keep purchasing a regular leather wallet over time, because they degrade quickly, you’d be continually spending money versus investing in calfskin and saving it for many years to come.
The Appearance Is Much More Beautiful
If you’ve ever had a calfskin leather product in your hands, you know that it’s incredibly beautiful to the touch and sight. It’s soft, smooth, and velvety. Whether you’re sporting a classy pair of dress shoes made from this leather or a wallet, for example, you’ll love the texture and feel of it.
Calfskin leather disadvantages
It wouldn’t be fair to only talk about the upsides to having calfskin leather, so let’s touch on the downsides. This way you can make a more informed purchasing decision.
It Can Be Costly
Calfskin leather isn’t cheap. It’s difficult and expensive to source when making products out of it, thus why it tends to have a higher price tag. For example, dress shoes made out of this leather tend to run for hundreds of dollars on the low end. Once again, this is because of the quality, durability, and comfort that it brings so it’s well worth the investment. If you have a good budget, you should be easily able to afford calfskin leather products but be aware it’ll cost you a pretty penny.
There Is More Upkeep
Calfskin leather is incredibly but darn does it need upkeep! Just like anything expensive and high quality, you will need to maintain a proper procedure for caring for it to ensure that it lasts as long as possible. This is especially the case for shoes because they are constantly exposed to the weather, dirt, and other debris that can tarnish the leather. We’ll be touching on how to clean calfskin leathers in a moment, but maintenance is another factor to consider.
It’s A Bit Harder To Find
Depending on where you are located, calfskin can be a bit more difficult to find compared to other traditional forms of leather. This is because only certain stores and brands will carry products composed of it. However, you can get around this downside by simply purchasing the product online. Keep in mind that you can’t try out shoes online, at least not yet, so you may have trouble getting the size perfect before it arrives to your door.
How To Clean Calfskin Leather
Alright. Now that you understand what calfskin leather is, the upsides, and the downsides, let’s talk more about how to clean this type of leather to keep it in perfect condition.
Step 1: Wipe The Leather With A Damp Cloth
You want to remove any debris on the surface of the shoes with a damp cloth to begin the process of calfskin care. The water doesn’t necessarily have to be warm or cold as room temperature is good enough. The goal here is to simply wipe the surface clean in gentle circles and strokes. There are dirt and dust that you don’t want to be rubbed into the leather in the later stages of cleaning.
Step 2: Use A Shoe Brush
A shoe brush is a special type of brush that is designed to gently clean shoe leather. The fine but effective bristles are capable of getting into the small cracks in the crevices of shoes for removing all buildup. Unless your shoes are wholecut, there will probably be little areas that are hard to reach which a shoe brush will take care of.
Step 3: Apply Leather Conditioner
What is leather? Skin! And that means it needs moisture to remain in tip top condition. This is why the third step is to apply a leather conditioner which softens, cleans, and moisturizres the leather. Keep in mind that you will want to purchase a special kind of calfskin leather conditioner or you may run the risk of damaging the product. This is because different types of leather require various amounts of moisture along with having unique sensitivities.
Step 4: Wash Off Gently
With a damp cloth, begin cleaning off the leather conditioner until the shoe is completely cleaned and no residue remains. Don’t be too hasty here. You don’t want any buildup of the product as it will dry and be apparent later.
Step 5: Let It Air Dry And Use A Shoe Tree
The best thing you can do after cleaning a shoe or other calfskin product is to simply let it sit. The air will dry it and you should preferably store it in a cool and dark location. Heat and humidity are not good for leather. We also suggest using a shoe tree as this helps keep the shoe, if that’s what you cleaned, in proper shape.
Wrapping Our Our Calfskin Leather Guide
Calfskin leather is perhaps the best type of leather a man can buy. It doesn’t matter if its shoes, a wallet, or another item, calfskin leather is comfortable, amazingly soft, and lasts longer than any other leather. It does come at a higher price tag and requires a bit more maintenance, but boy is it worth the investment.