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Know your Leather

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At Merrell, we utilise different types of leather together with innovative technology to create footwear which can not only allow you to move naturally at all times, but also optimises your performance.

It’s natural to be confused by the different kinds of leather. Nubuck and suede are the two most confusing types, because of their similar appearance and feel. And how does full-grain leather compare with other leather? 

Have a look at our breakdown of the different types of leather which you can find in Merrell shoes.

Nubuck

Nubuck Sliver

Nubuck is a top-grain leather made from what would be the exterior of the animal skin. This means that it is sanded on the outer surface of the leather. The result is soft and smooth, as well as superior and durable.

Apart from their similar look and feel, nubuck and suede also share the need for consistent treated care for the soft exteriors. 

Our Chameleon II Leather hiking shoe and our Moab Adventure Lace active shoe both use nubuck leather in the uppers to produce shoes that are both comfortable and hard-wearing.

Suede

Suede Sliver

Suede is made from the inside of the hide, which is sanded down to give it the texture and softness it is famous for. It is incredibly soft, pliable and lightweight, and like nubuck, requires consistent care and maintenance to retain its smoothness and suppleness. 

We use suede and nubuck together with mesh in the uppers of our Cham 7 hiking shoe and our Chameleon 7 Mid Calved Waterproof hiking boots, making them both lightweight and breathable. 

Full-Grain Leather

Fullgrain Sliver

Full-grain leather is the top of the range in terms of leather. It has not been sanded or buffed to remove imperfections, leaving the hide in its most natural and glorious form. The grain is left entirely intact to offer the greatest fibre strength and durability possible, and to allow for this variety to age beautifully over time. 

We use the sophisticated and robust full-grain leather in our versatile Chameleon 7 Slam Lunar active shoe as well as in our more casual Convoy AC sneaker.

Leather is always the best option, and now you know which ones will suit your active lifestyle best when put together with our cutting-edge technology.

Guide to Cleaning Shoes

Leather Sliver

Instructions for Full Grain Leather

Cleaning: Brush off dirt / mud with a damp cloth and clean with the product of your choice. Use a soft brush if needed. Your footwear could be soaking up water just because it is dirty. Regular cleaning will enhance your footwear performance.

Waterproofing: Apply your product of choice on clean leather. Leave for the necessary amount of minutes then wipe away surplus with a damp clean cloth and allow it to dry.

Drying: Important: Always allow shoes to dry naturally at room temperature. Never use direct heat such as radiators, etc. as this will make the leather stiff and crack and can also be harmful to the adhesives used in footwear construction. If you want to speed up the drying process, you can stuff newspaper into the toes to soak up some of the water.

Instructions for Fabric & Leather

Cleaning: Brush off dirt / mud with a damp cloth and clean with the product of your choice. Use a soft brush if needed. Your footwear could be soaking up water just because it is dirty. Regular cleaning will enhance your footwear performance.

Waterproofing: Apply your product of choice on clean leather. Leave for the necessary amount of minutes then wipe away surplus with a damp clean cloth and allow it to dry.

Drying: Important: Always allow shoes to dry naturally at room temperature. Never use direct heat such as radiators, etc. as this will make the leather stiff and crack and can also be harmful to the adhesives used in footwear construction. If you want to speed up the drying process, you can stuff newspaper into the toes to soak up some of the water.

Instructions for Nubuck & Suede

Cleaning: Brush off dirt / mud with a damp cloth and clean with the product of your choice. Use a soft brush if needed. Your footwear could be soaking up water just because it is dirty. Regular cleaning will enhance your footwear performance.

Waterproofing: We can recommend “Nikwax Nubuck & Suede Proof”. It can be applied to wet footwear. Leave for 2 minutes then wipe away surplus with a damp clean cloth and allow it to dry.

Drying: Important: Always allow shoes to dry naturally at room temperature. Never use direct heat such as radiators, etc. as this will make the leather stiff and crack and can also be harmful to the adhesives used in footwear construction. If you want to speed up the drying process, you can stuff newspaper into the toes to soak up some of the water.

So for top-quality comfort, durability and functionality, get your next pair of leather shoes from Merrell.