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Crocodile Embossed Leather: Differences With Genuine One

Crocodile-embossed leather is an affordable alternative to genuine crocodile, but what are the differences between crocodile-embossed leather & a genuine one? Find out here.

What Is Croco (or Crocodile) Embossed Leather?

Crocodile-embossed leather, also known as ‘mock croc,’ is a type of leather designed to emanate the natural beauty of genuine crocodile leather. Embossing involves applying heat and a stamp which is then pressed until an impression is created to give it a feel of the typical look of genuine animal leather, or in this case, natural crocodile skin.

The manufacturing process sometimes involves the use of synthetic materials. Some companies, however, use genuine leather, such as buffalo leather, cowhide leather, and other leather products. Cowhide, in particular, is the most commonly used skin.

Several variants of croc-embossed products exist, with popular types including turquoise embossed crocodile on cowhide leather and rosa embossed crocodile on cowhide leather.

Telling apart the mock croc leather from genuine crocodile leather can be pretty tricky. This is because the alligator scales printed on it look imperfect like natural crocodile skin and quite luxurious.

Features of Crocodile-Embossed Leather

White embossed crocodile on cowhide leather or other types of leather creations have several observable characteristics:

  • Repetitive and identical pattern due to the use of stamps
  • Similar coloring to the embossed reptile skin
  • An artificial shine to the skin 
  • Made synthetically with a shallow print 

How to Differentiate Crocodile-Embossed Leather From Genuine One

To distinguish genuine crocodile leather from embossed alligator skins can be a challenge. However, there are simple features you can take into account to ensure you are getting the leather of your choice.

Take considerable time examining the leather and the distribution of scales to see if the material is made of genuine crocodile or alligator skin. Here is what you should look for:

Note How the Leather Feels

Unlike real reptile skins, stamped/embossed leather is considerably harder, rigid, and compact, and it nearly feels like plastic. On the other hand, natural crocodile leather goods are usually smooth, supple, and sensitive to the touch. Pay attention to the feel of the tiles, grains, and scales.

Check the Papers

Checking the papers is crucial when it comes to crocodile-embossed leather, especially if you are purchasing leather products from designer shops that deal with genuine leather hides. Buy from the official stores and websites of the design houses, and make sure you choose a reputable supplier.

You'll probably get paperwork stating that you purchased genuine crocodile leather items. Your supplier should gladly answer any questions or concerns that you may have.

If the seller refuses to respond to your questions or queries, you should be concerned and consider changing your mind about purchasing these products. This is because the products might be made from stamped leather or other imitations while being priced like genuine crocodile leather.

Check the Tag

Check the tag to see if the handbag is made of crocodile leather. However, it is not enough for the label to say "genuine leather." At times, what is said to be a reptile’s natural skin might turn out to be printed cowhide.

So instead, look for a tag stating that the handbag is made of crocodile leather. The tag may even say "full-grain leather," indicating that the hide's grain has not been broken up. Tags aren’t 100% reliable, so you have to take this with a grain of salt and consider the other tips as well.

Look for Sudden Change in the Size and Shape of the Scales

The shape of the scales of genuine reptile leather progress from large, square shapes on their bellies to smaller, more rounded shapes on their sides, i.e., a less geometrically uniform pattern. If the transition is abrupt and occurs more than twice in a single panel, or if there is no transition, the bag is probably made of croc-embossed leather.

Beware of the Price

Genuine crocodile skin is costly. Therefore, as a buyer, you should expect to buy it at a relatively high price.

For example, a Hermès Birkin crocodile fabric bag can cost upwards of $50,000. Less prestigious brands sell crocodile skin handbags for a minimum of $2,000-$4,000, depending on the size and style. Exotic leather is expensive no matter what, even if you are only interested in purchasing the material for your own leatherwork.

Therefore whenever someone is trying to sell you a genuine reptile leather handbag for less than a few thousand dollars, it is almost certainly a fake. At Stonestreet Leather, we value our customers and provide them with leatherwork & leathercraft supplies they can count on.

If you are interested in crocodile embossed leather, or any other leather material, do not hesitate to take a look at our website or contact us directly at (417) 888-3020 and learn more!

Pros and Cons of Genuine Crocodile Leather and Embossed Skin

There are several pros and cons when it comes to crocodile leather and embossed skin. Here is what you need to consider:

Pros of Genuine Crocodile Leather

  • Natural crocodile leather is highly durable and has a long shelf life due to the thick skin of the reptile. 
  • Crocodile skin products, be it a crocodile leather handbag or shoes, have a luxurious feel.

Cons of Genuine Crocodile Leather

  • High maintenance needs of real reptile skins since they will dry and crack if not well maintained.
  • Easy to stain and therefore challenging to keep clean. Although there are companies that will provide cleaning and stain removing services, it can be costly due to the unique nature of real crocodile leather.
  • Genuine crocodile leather is very expensive compared to crocodile-embossed leather.
  • May be more challenging to work with for crafters who are new to leatherworking.

As you can see, even though genuine crocodile leather is extremely durable, it is also costly to maintain. But how do crocodile-embossed leather products fare? Here is what you need to know:

Pros of Crocodile-Embossed Leather

  • Significantly cheaper than real alligator leather.
  • Printed leather requires a very low maintenance cost compared to genuine leather since it is easy to clean and does not easily stain.
  • Offers a luxurious feel when compared to standard cowhide leather.
  • Easier for beginner leatherworkers to craft with.

Cons of Crocodile-Embossed Leather

  • Printed cowhide does not last long as real alligator leather.
  • May not be as appealing to those who are drawn to the luxury and exclusivity of exotic natural leather made from crocodiles.

How to Get Embossed Crocodile Leather Products

Although having a crocodile product made out of genuine skin is rather prestigious, crocodile-embossed leather is quickly gaining momentum due to the rise of high-quality croc-embossed leather.

Moreover, the benefits that come with purchasing an embossed product outmatch those of genuine leather for those who value low-cost, minimal-maintenance options.

If you are looking for a trustworthy embossed leather supplier, you can result on Stonestreet Leather to exceed your expectations.

There are fourteen vibrant colors to choose from among our embossed crocodile on cowhide products, including cranberry, pink cotton candy, purple, royal blue, mint chocolate chip, and many more! Browse our selection now and see the quality first-hand. If you have any questions about our selection of products, our friendly customer service team is here to help.