Suede vs. Leather Shoes: Who Deserves a Spot in Your Shoe Rack?Consumer footwear buying behavior changed during COVID. These days, buyers are exclusively searching for comfortable, casual styles. That’s why leather and suede shoes are flying off the shelf.

If you’re gearing up for a shoe splurge, you may wonder about the difference between suede vs. leather. Both materials come from animal skin but, while leather is full-grain, suede is made from the soft top layer of a split hide.

How could you ever choose between the two? We’re about to help you do just that, so you better keep reading!

The Pros and Cons of Leather and Suede

Leather and suede are two of the oldest materials used for making shoes. But which one is better? Find out for yourself below with the pros and cons of suede vs. leather shoes.

Pros of Leather

Leather has been around for centuries for a reason — it’s highly durable and reliable. As long as you take good care of your leather shoes, you can expect them to remain like-new for many, many years.

The best part about leather shoes? They’re ideal for any season. Whether you choose a pair of leather sandals in the summer or leather riding boots for winter, your feet will be comfortable and breezy all year round.

Pros of Suede

Soft and light, suede is a beautiful pliant material for shoemaking. Suede can adapt to various different shoe styles. Plus, suede flexes and forms to the shape of the foot for a custom-feeling fit every time.

Perhaps even more importantly, suede is superior when it comes to style. No matter which suede shoes you choose, rest assured they’ll look classic and elegant for years to come.

Cons of Leather

Leather is hard to care for. It does a decent job of resisting dirt and dust, but liquids are seriously bad news for your leather footwear.

The biggest downside to leather is that it’s easily faked. Even seasoned pros can have a hard time determining a good fake from genuine leather shoes. As long as you purchase from a reputable brand, though, you may not have to worry about this con.

Cons of Suede

Suede is expensive. Depending on the quality, it can often be more expensive than leather. This is especially true if you choose a shoe constructed with hand-made suede.

Another downside to suede is that, like leather, it’s difficult to care for and clean. If you get sued dirty, you’ll have to use a suede-specific cleaner. For example, take a look at this article about how to clean suede.

Suede vs. Leather: The Bottom Line

These two materials have many pros and cons in common, which is why the decision to go suede vs. leather usually comes down to personal preference. So, which one do you prefer?

Did you enjoy this article and want more like it? You’ve come to the right place. Keep scrolling for more style tips and tricks like this!