In general the majority of leathers produced today are treated in the tanneries to provide a grain impression. This is done by applying an initial layer of colour to the surface of the leather and then by applying a heat press to imprint a grain pattern to the surface.
Thereafter the final layers of colour and top coat are applied to produce the finished leather hide ready for use in the manufacture of leather goods.
Whilst the majority of leather used in the production of car interiors and home furnishings are treated in this manner this is not the case when preparing aniline and nubuck or suede finishes.
Leather is sourced as a by product of the food industry and comes from a variety of animals such as cows, goats, lamb and even pigskin.
The purest and most sought after form of leather is full aniline. Full aniline leathers are not treated with top coats but are dyed to give them their finished colour. As a result of there being no top coat applied to aniline leather they will tend to absorb liquids. A simple test to help understand if your product has been made using aniline leather is to find a discrete area and apply a small drop of water to the surface.