When someone hears the word leather, the first thought that appears in their mind is cow skin, pigskin or the exotic crocodile skin. However, leather is also famously made from goats, ostriches, dogs and sheep. Meanwhile, sheepskin may not be new to many people, yet, a majority are unaware of its existence, appearance, benefits and more.
Australia exports wool and sheepskin and has a market of over 376 million AUD in 2021. As such, sheep leather accessories are in demand in Australia and globally. Since the 20th century, leather jackets, pants and accessories have become cultural icons. They represent signs of luxury, comfort and style. Moreover, people have been using sheep leather for centuries to keep themselves warm and cosy, and people invest in them even now. So, what is all the fuss about sheepskin leather? Here are the answers:
What Makes Sheepskin Leather Different From Its Counterparts?
Sheepskin, also called shearing, is the hide that covers the sheep’s body with the fur on. When the wool is removed, then it is referred to as sheepskin leather. It is the lightest of all the commercially produced leather in the industry, apart from relatively toxic fish leather. And unlike poor quality leather with a distinct smell of chemicals and oils, well-processed and tanned sheepskin accessories have little or no smell. Besides, sheep leather and goat leather are very similar in their construction and are light, soft, durable, and fine grain. However, sheep leather is more regarded among the two.
What Are the Features of This Leather?
One of the significant identifying factors of sheepskin leather is the evenly spaced, distinct pores on the surface that are easily visible to the naked eye. It is the thinnest of all of the commercially mass-produced leather. And it is popular for its thin, soft, velvety feel, making it the most distinguishing feature. Meanwhile, the small, fine grains give the leather a smooth, silky finish. It is soft enough for a person to wear it as a jacket or glove directly contacting the skin and poses no discomfort.
The sheepskin leather from the olden days was exclusively brown. However, many colours like yellow, blue, white, red, and black are also available. As such, good quality sheep leather depends on whether the pelt or the back of the hide is visible and has no seed contamination.
Is Sheepskin Worth the Price?
Considering the unique features and superior characteristics of sheepskin leather, there is no doubt that it is regarded as one of the premium leathers. It is soft, light and also highly durable, and therefore, costs relatively more than any other form of animal leather. Besides, sheep leather accessories and clothing can last for decades when one takes care of it and maintains it properly. As sheepskin leather is relatively thinner when compared to cow leather, it is not as warm as the latter. However, it is windproof, and when it is layered with other clothing, it makes for a warm winter garment like sheepskin gloves.
Advantages of Sheepskin Leather
Sheep leather offers maximum comfort to the wearers due to its soft and smooth texture and lightweight. It also feels luxurious and supple on the skin. Also, it is a breathable material due to its hollow fibres, and apparel such as gloves, coats, and jackets work great for Australian summers and winters. It is also flame-retardant, meaning that it prevents fire from injuring the wearer. Moreover, the lanolin present in the leather helps heal inflamed or sensitive skin and has antibacterial properties.