Nubuck vs Suede 

Nubuck and suede are words often encountered by people when looking for leather products in the market. In fact, shoes made of suede are quite popular among people. These people become confused when they find different products looking similar to suede but referred to as Nubuck. Despite similarities, these two leather products have differences in processing and treatment that will be talked about in this article.


Suede is a very common product that is used to make shoes, jackets, coats, wallets, and many other accessories for men and women. It is also used as upholstery in furniture items. It is a kind of leather that is made from the hide of lamb though many other animal hides are also used to make suede. The thing to remember in the case of suede is that it is made from the inner side of the skin of the animals. This is the reason why suede is soft to touch while the outer layer of animal hide is tough.


Nubuck is a leather product that is made from cow hide. There are many types of products made from Nubuck available in the market though shoes are the most common products made from this type of leather. This leather is made from the outer side of the skin of the cattle and is considered tough and durable. Nubuck is also thick and feels solid.

What is the difference between Nubuck and Suede?

• Though it is hard to find a difference between Nubuck and suede visually, suede is the inner skin of the animal that has been sanded while Nubuck is the outer skin of the animal that has also been sanded.

• Both Nubuck and suede are used extensively to make different products for men and women, and it is easy to see coats, jackets, shoes, purses, trousers etc. made from these two types of leather.

• Nubuck being outer layer of the skin of the animal has more strength and is considered tougher and more durable than suede.

• Brushing and sanding of the outside layer of animal hide produces Nubuck whereas brushing or sanding of the inside of the animal skin is labeled as suede.

What is the difference between full-grain, top-grain, and split leather?

Cowhides, in their natural state, are too thick to be used for most conventional purposes. They first must be split into thinner layers.

Full Grain Leather is outermost layer of the hide. It is leather that has not been corrected or modified outside of removing the hair. Full grain leather is often seen as the most authentic type of leather because it maintains all of the texture from the original cowhide.

When the hide is split into layers, Split Leather is taken from the inner layer of the hide. It is typically more delicate than full-grain leather, and is often used to create suede.

Top-Grain Leather is the same as full grain leather but the cowhide that is used is most often severely defective. To remedy this, top grain leather is typically sanded and then a finish coat is added to the surface. It is usually less expensive and has higher resistance to marks and blemishes than full-grain leather.