What is Cross Grain Leather?

What Is Cross Grain Leather? A Comprehensive Guide

Leather has been a popular material for centuries, known for its durability, versatility, and timeless appeal. One type of leather that has gained popularity in recent years is cross grain leather. In this article, we’ll take a deep dive into what cross grain leather is, how it’s made, its unique features, and how to care for it.

What is Cross Grain Leather?

Cross grain leather is a type of leather that is made from the middle section of the animal hide. It’s called “cross grain” because the leather fibers run perpendicular to the surface, creating a unique texture and pattern. This variety of leather is also referred to as “top grain” or “corrected grain” leather.

How is Cross Grain Leather Made?

The process of making cross grain leather involves several steps. First, the hide is split into two layers: the top layer (or grain side) and the bottom layer (or flesh side). The top layer is then sanded or buffed to remove any imperfections or blemishes. This makes it an ideal option as it is effortless to maintain and keep clean.
Next, the leather is coated with a protective layer, which can be either a pigmented or aniline finish. A pigmented finish is a coating that sits on top of the leather and creates a uniform appearance. An aniline finish is a translucent dye that allows the natural texture and grain of the leather to show through. Both finishes have their pros and cons, and the choice depends on the desired look and durability of the leather.

The Characteristics of Cross Grain Leather

Cross grain leather has several unique characteristics that set it apart from other types of leather.


Cross grain leather is recognized for its ability to withstand wear and tear and its exceptional durability. The protective coating applied to the leather makes it resistant to water, stains, and scratches. This makes it an ideal material for products that are used frequently, such as bags and wallets.

Texture and Appearance

The cross grain pattern creates a unique texture and appearance that is unlike any other type of leather. It adds depth and dimension to the leather, making it more visually appealing and interesting to look at. The texture also provides a non-slip grip, which is particularly useful for products like wallets and phone cases.


Cross grain leather is a versatile material that can be used for a wide range of products, from bags and wallets to furniture and clothing. Its durability and unique texture make it a popular choice for luxury goods and high-end fashion items.

Cross Grain Leather

Types of Products Made with Cross Grain Leather

Cross grain leather can be used to make a variety of products, including:

Bags and Wallets

Cross grain leather is a popular choice for bags and wallets because of its durability and resistance to wear and tear. Moreover, it requires minimal effort to keep it clean and well-maintained, which makes it a perfect choice
for everyday use. The cross grain pattern adds a touch of sophistication and style to these accessories, making them stand out.


Cross grain leather is also used in the manufacturing of furniture. Sofas, chairs, and ottomans made with cross grain leather offer both comfort and elegance. The durability of the leather ensures that the furniture will last for years, even with regular use. Additionally, the unique texture of cross grain leather adds a luxurious touch to any living space.

Clothing and Accessories

Fashion designers often incorporate cross grain leather into their clothing and accessory designs. Jackets, skirts, and belts made with this type of leather offer a contemporary and edgy look. The distinctive texture and pattern of cross grain leather create a visually appealing and fashionable aesthetic.

How to Care for Cross Grain Leather

To ensure the longevity of your cross grain leather products, proper care and maintenance are essential.

Cleaning and Maintenance

Regular cleaning is important to keep cross grain leather looking its best. You can easily remove any dirt or spills by gently wiping the affected area with a soft, damp cloth. To prevent harm to the leather, it is best to refrain from utilizing strong chemicals or rough cleaning agents. If needed, you can use a leather conditioner specifically designed for cross grain leather to restore its natural shine and suppleness.


When not in use, store your cross grain leather items in a cool and dry place. Avoid exposing them to direct sunlight or extreme temperatures, as this can cause the leather to fade or crack. Consider using dust bags or covers to protect the leather from dust and scratches.

The Pros and Cons of Cross Grain Leather

As with any material, cross grain leather has its advantages and disadvantages. Let’s explore them:


Durability: Cross grain leather is highly durable and can withstand daily wear and tear.
Unique Texture: The cross grain pattern adds a distinctive texture and visual appeal.
Versatility: It can be used to create a wide range of products, from accessories to furniture.
Resistance to Stains: The protective coating makes cross grain leather resistant to stains and spills.


Price: Cross grain leather is often more expensive than other types of leather.
Limited Natural Grain: The sanding process can remove some of the natural grain, resulting in a smoother surface.
Potential for Fading: Exposure to direct sunlight over time may cause the leather to fade.


Cross grain leather is a unique and versatile type of leather that offers durability, texture, and style. Whether used in bags, furniture, or clothing, it adds a touch of luxury to any product. By following proper care and maintenance guidelines, you can enjoy the beauty and longevity of


Is cross grain leather genuine leather?

Yes, cross grain leather is made from genuine animal hide.

How do I remove stains from cross grain leather?

Use a damp cloth and mild soap to gently clean the stained area. Avoid using excessive water or harsh cleaners.

Can I use cross grain leather products in rainy weather?

Cross grain leather is water-resistant to some extent, but it’s best to avoid exposing it to heavy rain or prolonged moisture.

Can cross grain leather be repaired if damaged?

Minor scratches or scuffs can often be buffed out with a leather conditioner. For major damage, it’s best to consult a professional leather repair service.

How long does cross grain leather last?

With proper care, cross grain leather products can last for many years.

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