Chemical dyes for leather – the dyeing process

Coloured leather

The natural colour of leather is certainly very appreciated, and natural leather can be used in many different sectors, from fashion to upholstery. However, sometimes coloured leather is preferable and even necessary to give objects a special look and turn leather into a more versatile material.


The process of dyeing leather is a really important one and needs to be made in a very attentive way, using specific, high-quality products. Leather colouring is a phase of leather finishing that can be described as the group of operations required to determine the colour of top grain and split.

Types of leather pigments

There are two main categories of dyes that can be used to colour leather: artificial and natural dyes. While in the past natural dyes (animal or vegetal) were the only means used to dye leather, with the passing of time many developments and innovations have taken place in this sector, and nowadays there is a great number of chemical dyes for leather that can be used for this purpose.

How to colour leather

As far as the methods used to dye leather are concerned, we can say that there are various means: dyeing in drums is certainly one of the most popular ones. This is a process that consists in plunging leather into drums containing a high quantity of water and the solution of dyeing chosen to colour leather. In order leather to be dyed properly, there must be the perfect temperature (50 to 60° C).
Another way to dye leather is by means of brush and pads. This method is used especially for certain types of leather that are good in the production of items like gloves, and it is notably long to carry out and more expensive than other ones.
A third method to dye leather is through a spray machine. This semi-automatic method to dye leather is faster and cheaper than the previous one.
No matter the dyeing process, the most important thing is to always use the best products, which can serve as guarantee for quality!

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2 Comments

  1. Pigment with very fine film which is suitable for vegetable tanned leather

    1. vecoitalia

      Dear Sir,
      thank you for commenting our article! In our product list we have both anionic and cationic very fine pigment dispersions that may be suitable for vegetable tanned leather. I’ll contact you directly!
      Many thanks and best regards

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