Leather Purse Buying Guide

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Leather Purse Buying Guide

Leather purses are durable and a great way to carry cash and cards. They are available in numerous styles that use different types of leather. Before buying a leather purse, buyers should consider the sizes and shapes that fit comfortably in a handbag.


Types of Leather for Purses

Cowhide is the most popular type of leather used for purses. The grain and patterns on the surface of the leather caused by the hairs and pores of the animal are uniform and closely packed. In addition, cowhide is thick, which makes it a good material for large purses that carry lots of loose change. Sheepskin leather has a less uniform grain and is not as thick as cowhide. It feels soft and has a wrinkled look. Exotic leathers, such as ostrich, alligator, and snakeskin, have unusual markings that make them a unique choice for purses. However, they are often more expensive.


Styles of Leather Purse

Leather purses come in a wide array of styles. Some are ideal for everyday use, while other are more appropriate for formal occasions. Buyers should choose the style that holds the items they typically carry.


Style of Purse


Zip around

Outer zip keeps the contents from falling out

Compartments for paper money, coins, and cards

Small and medium designs

Everyday use

Flap over

Bi-fold and tri-fold designs

Compartments for paper money, coins, and cards

Everyday use


Zip at the top

Single compartment for a variety of items

Medium to large

Everyday use


For coins only

Several styles, including pouches and squeeze coin purses


Everyday use



Compartments for paper money, coins, cards, mobile phones, keys, and other small items
Detachable shoulder strap
Ideal for formal wear or evening wear


Before selecting a purse, buyers should consider how they intend to use the accessory. For everyday use, a small item, such as a flap over or zip around purse, fits easily into a handbag. For a formal night out, a larger, envelope-style clutch holds the essentials, including make-up, in addition to cash and cards.


Choosing a Good Quality Leather Purse

Although leather is a sturdy material, purses are handled frequently, which means that they need a good quality finish so that they do not experience rapid wear and tear. The lining should be made from a strong fabric that does not fray or rip easily. Zips and clasps should fasten securely.

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