Exotic watch straps – Exploring the different types

When you buy something that uses animal skins, you’re buying authentic luxury. Each type is as unique as its wearer, with details and texture that admirers can’t help but touch, and exotic watch straps are not exception.

What makes exotic watch straps desirable?

Exotic skin is a type of leather that is not made from cattle hide and often used as a luxury option for fashion wearers. Most exotic leathers are valued for their unique look and rarity. Another factor that makes an exotic leather bag appealing is the surface properties. The texture afforded by some exotic leathers adds intrigue and vibrancy to the watch design. For example, an lizard leather watch strap has a greater surface definition than a smooth cowhide leather. The lizard scales offer a unique texture and pattern that creates color variations to the overall look of the watch. When contrasted with smooth leathers, the lizard leather stands out and captures your attention as a fashion accessory. 

Alligator and Crocodile – The most expensive exotic watch straps

Alligator and crocodile products are much more expensive and sought after than other animal leather because there’s a limited number of animals and it takes a long time to grow them. 

People may confuse it with crocodile skin, but alligator skins are more difficult to source responsibly, and the scale patterns are actually very distinct. Alligator skin has larger scales that become smaller in disordered patterns. It’s soft but doesn’t stretch out—the hard scales are almost bony in structure. Alligator skin is smoother than crocodile skin. Buffed up to a high shine, it embodies old-world elegance with edgy, fashion-forward potential. It’s delicate and elegant enough to elevate a woman’s pocketbook and sturdy enough to become a man’s favorite dress shoe for decades.

Alligator watch strap at B.A Handmade

The most obvious difference between crocodile and alligator skin is that alligator has small-sized round scales,  crocodile has big-sized round scales and hair follicles—you can see the remaining dot-sized hole of one on each scale. Their patterns are more consistent and symmetrical, a series of rectangles that suggest a more conservative and stately vibe than alligators. In reality, they’re no such thing; crocodiles can grow to 2,200 pounds and have evolved by fending off anacondas and tigers. They eat alligators for breakfast. Crocodile watch straps have never gone out of style, and the rugged look of the skin makes it a natural for items that need to be sturdier, such as boots and briefcases.

Ostrich leather watch straps

Ostrich leather is one of the most luxurious materials for exotic watch straps. It has an unmistakable pattern, thanks to the large follicles remaining from feathers. It’s a coveted material for upholstery in high-end cars and the most masculine way to incorporate polka dots into a luxe look. Ostrich skin is thick and durable, with natural oils in the leather that keep it soft and prevent cracking. Over time, the skin can darken, so many clothiers dye it brighter colors to take advantage of the texture without losing impact. Ostrich leather is divided into 2 types: Ostrich body skin and Ostrich leg skin

Ostrich body skin

The skin of the ostrich body is characterized by the bumps of the quill follicle. The portion with these bumps is called the “crown”.  During the process of tanning and dyeing, the spots become slightly darker than the flat skin, which creates the beauty and uniqueness of ostrich skin.

When touching ostrich body skin, we will feel the roughness of the pores, but it is quite soft, not causing discomfort to our hands. These pores also feature to differentiate genuine ostrich with imitation products.

On the entire body of an ostrich, only 1/3 of the skin has pores. They are concentrated on the neck, back and thighs, so not all ostrich skin has bumps. Since the crown is the most sought-after portion and since it constitutes such a small area of the skin, “full quill” ostrich products are considerably more expensive when compared to bovine leather. This, along with the fact that it is one of the strongest commercial leathers, leads ostrich leather to be seen as a luxury item.

Ostrich body leather watch strap

Ostrich leg scales and skin

Ostrich legs are about the closest thing to dinosaur leather you can find. The skin of the ostrich leg is scaly in appearance, with many small scales on either side of the leg and a series of large, semi-rectangular shapes going down the front of the leg in the center.

This skin is characterized by a layered scaly structure. The scales are shiny and relatively hard, with gaps between the scales. The layers of scales are arranged parallel to each other and run in a straight line.

Ostrich leg skin watch strap

We can also see these things with the naked eye, or we can feel the layers and hardness of the scales with our hands. The joints between the scales are soft and supple, which make ostrich skin flexible when we try bending the product. 

Lizard leather watch straps

This is one of the rarer skins that designers use in clothing and accessories because it can be so delicate. Lizards function more often as an accent in combination with something more durable, like cow leather. Different species have scale shapes and sizes that vary from round to square and rectangular. 

If you’re into vintage watches you will know that lizard leather straps were quite a thing back in the days. These exotic and beautiful leather hides will instantly elevate the look of your watch. The patterns on the lizard leather hide are more consistent than alligator leather, straps of smaller width will still showcase the full glory of the patterned hide due to its smaller scales. If you’re picturing a tiny reptile that would fit in your hand, though, you’re way off base. Nile and Teju lizard skins are some of the most popular, and these animals can grow to three square feet. Designers love using lizard skin because it’s so thin—no more than .66 mm thick—and pliable. It takes special care to ensure that the skin doesn’t peel or dry out.

Stingray leather watch strap

Of all exotic watch straps, stingray is often the most underrated. It is highly durable (25 times more durable than cowhide leathers) and has a unique supple texture. This leather is one of the most durable skins and is widely available, immune to scratches and even attempted punctures. It doesn’t stain and is, of course, naturally water-resistant. It can be textured to be bumpy or flat and painted in any color in a large number of possibilities. 

Snake/Python leather watch strap

Python leather is a very expensive leather that is beautiful, yet durable. Pythons, Cobras, Ayers and sea snakes are the most popular species for leather extraction. Naturally, these species also offer exceptionally beautiful morphs and well-structured grains that add to their popularity.

As a natural characteristic, snakeskin has a quintessential shimmer. Matt looks or metallic glosses are also created by applying during the tanning process. However, natural and undyed snakeskins are the most popular finishes, leaving the luxurious scales of the reptile intact in the final accessory. 

B.A Handmade – Premier quality exotic watch straps provider in the US

B.A Handmade specializes in the design, manufacture and supply of quality watch straps. All products are meticulously handcrafted or imported with clear origins. Sophisticated leather materials with neat lines are the advantages of watch straps at B.A Handmade. Moreover, all of our products are made from full grain leather – the best sort of leather with high durability and uniqueness. 

You can choose exotic watch straps HERE or request your own customized straps. Besides, when you buy a leather strap at B.A Handmade, you will get a free needle buckle and strap replacement tools.

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