Glazed Leather

glazed leather hide

Leather Terminology / Leather Finishes


Definition of Glazed Leather

Glazed leather is leather burnished or polished to make it appear shiny. It goes through a glazed finish, one of the oldest yet the most beautiful leather finishes.

The leather is first burnished with a burnishing compound and then left to dry. Once fully dried, leather manufacturers shine up the leather surface using a glazing machine, glazing jack, or leather polisher with wood or glass cylinder on it.

The arm of the cylinder moves back and forth while the leather is sandwiched between the roller and the belted material beneath.

(Note: The pressure on the leather from the roller can be controlled to ensure the glazing is done as desired.)

As the glass or wood cylinder compresses and rolls against the leather surface, it becomes smooth and shiny, eventually forming a glazed finish.

At the same time, the friction of the glass or wood rubbing across the leather surface creates high temperatures which harden the finish, making it more durable than other types of leather finishes.

For a super high gloss finish, manufacturers apply thermostatic binders to the leather surface, which prevents the leather from becoming soft and sticky during the process.

The key characteristics of glazed leather include a smooth surface, high gloss, and subtle color undertones.

The major downside to this leather finish, however, is the high application cost. Leather manufacturers may need to apply as many as six different coats that involve multiple platings, staking, glazings, and brushing operations to achieve the preferred physical features.

Example of Glazed Leather in a Sentence

"The material of this guitar strap is glazed leather of the most exquisite black color that adds a conspicuous element of splendor to the shine."

Synonyms: polido leather, rectified skin

Related Terms for Glazed Leather

Written by Ryan Popoff

Ryan Popoff is the creative mind behind Popov Leather wallets, iPhone cases, belts, watch bands and journals since 2013. With a Bachelor Degree in Fine Arts, my leatherworking journey began at home. I wanted to create a simple leather wallet that could fit into my front pocket and — to my delight — it was a hit with family and friends. Hopefully you love our honest, quality leather goods too! Read more