Leather Crafting

Tan Kote vs Resolene Which is Best




Tan Kote vs Resolene


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Tan Kote Or Resolene Which Leather Finish Should You Use

Tan Kote vs Resolene When it comes to top coats for leather products, there are several options to choose from. This can make it confusing to figure out which top coat is right for you.

If you are new to the world of leather, or even if you consider yourself to be a leather expert, and you are wondering about using Tan Kote vs Resolene for your leather items, this article will provide you with all the information you need.

Along with covering the differences between Tan Kote and Resolene, this article will also take a look at how to condition your leather prior to adding the topic coat, as well as some ways you can help your leather product last for years to come.

Condition Your Leather First

Prior to adding the top coat to your leather, you should condition it with either a cream or oil. Keep in mind that conditioning oils will often change the color of the leather a bit, whereas creams simply moisturize.

Using a conditioner is important because it helps your leather stay strong, prevents cracking in it, keeps water from getting into the fibers, and protects your leather from stains and dirt. Ideally, you should apply a conditioner to your leather every month, especially if you use the item often.

Before using a leather conditioner, first make sure it is clean by giving it a gentle scrub with some warm water and soap, and let it dry. Next, apply your conditioner in circular motions with a dry piece of cloth, covering the surface generously, and then use a different dry piece of cloth to buff off the conditioner, again with circular movements.

Why You Should Use a Top Coat

Top coat is smart to use on your leather for a few reasons. First, if you have just dyed your leather item, a top coat keeps the dye from rubbing off onto everything your leather touches, including you. It also makes the color of the dye much more vibrant.

Another reason why you should apply a top coat to your leather is that it gives the material a light sheen, which keeps it from appearing dull. It also adds a layer of protection against water and scratches.

Tan Kote vs. Resolene Information

There are various brands of top coat to choose from for your leather, and they are available in both an aerosol can and a thicker form that is able to be applied with a piece of cloth. Most top coats for leather can be found in satin, matte, and gloss finishes.

This article will be focusing specifically on Tan Kote vs. Resolene. Take a look at some of the features of each one below.

Tan Kote

Tan KoteTan Kote is a resin-based top coat that you can use on your leather products. The downside to this particular option is that it is not waterproof. This leather finish will rub off with time, so you will need to reapply it eventually.

Some people actually like this feature of Tan Kote as it allows them to easily wash the finish off and reapply it if needed, and it provides them with the ability to use a conditioner over the finish.

How to Apply:

If you have recently dyed your leather, make sure it has had time to completely dry before you apply the top coat. Similarly, if you conditioned your leather, let it dry for a few hours before putting the finish on.

To apply Tan Kote, use a piece of dry wool or cloth, and rub it evenly across the surface of the leather in a circular motion. Make sure to use a generous amount and to get into all of the grooves.

Let the finish dry overnight, or speed up the process by blowing air on it using a hair dryer on the setting with no or low heat. Once it has dried, use another piece of dry wool or cloth to buff the leather again until you have achieved the sheen you want.

In the case that you are spraying the Tan Kote onto your leather, get a light coat onto the surface of the leather, and let it dry. After the finish has dried, you can add additional coats, if you feel it is necessary. You can buff the final coat of Tan Kote if you want to remove some or even it out.


ResoleneUnlike Tan Kote, Resolene is acrylic-based and it is more flexible than Tan Kote, as well as waterproof and UV-resistant. It also results in a shinier finish. Although some people find Resolene more difficult to apply than Tan Kote, you can dilute the solution with water to help you achieve a more even application, and the final buffing will also help with this.

How to Apply:

As with applying Tan Kote, if you have recently dyed your leather, make sure that it has had time to completely dry before you put Resolene on the material. Also, if you conditioned your leather, you should allow it a few hours to dry prior to using your finish.

Once your leather is ready for the Resolene finish, use a piece of dry cloth or sheep’s wool to apply a hefty amount to the surface of your leather item. Use circular and back-and-forth movements and a bit of force to really get the finish into all of the crannies in the leather. Make sure that you work a bit quickly so you don’t have parts drying while you work.

After you have covered the leather with Resolene, let it dry overnight, or use a hair dryer on the medium heat setting to quickly dry the top coat. Once it is dry, you need to buff the leather again to get the look you want.

If you are using an aerosol can to apply the top coat, simply spray a light coat onto the leather surface, and let it dry completely before applying any additional coats. You can buff the top coat as a final step as well.

Help Your Leather Endure

Leather can truly stand the test of time if you maintain it properly. This section will detail some tips for keeping your leather in great shape for decades, and perhaps even centuries, to come.

Keep it Clean

One very simple and quick way to keep your leather item in pristine condition is by wiping it down once a week. All you need to do is take a damp washcloth and get all of the dust off that has accumulated on it

over the days. This will help keep debris from damaging your leather.

Let it Breathe

There are many times when people seal up items they are no longer using in airtight containers or bags. However, when it comes to leather products, you should avoid doing this, as leather needs air to stay free of mildew.

Leather fibers can hold in water, which needs air circulation to evaporate. Sealing up your leather items will prevent this from being able to happen.

Spot Test

Whether it is a conditioner or top coat, prior to using any solution on your leather product, you should apply a bit of it on a small area of the leather. This way, you can test it out to make sure that it looks the way you want.

Ideally, you should let the spot dry overnight to see how the finished product would look. This can help you avoid applying the solution to the entire surface of your leather product only to realize that you are not satisfied with the leather’s final appearance and, in turn, saving you a lot of effort.

Condition Regularly

As was previously mentioned, you should try to find the time once a month to give your leather item a good conditioning. If you have used Tan Kote on your leather and noticed that the sheen has begun wearing off, you can also reapply your top coat at this time.

Keeping your leather moisturized is probably the best thing that you can do to make your product last for several years without cracks and brittleness. It is also the most effective way to keep your leather from looking dry and worn-out.

Keep Out of Sun

Even if you use Resolene, which is resistant to UV rays, on your leather product, it is important to keep it out of bright sunlight. Similarly, you should avoid putting your leather in direct heat.

If your leather item gets exposed to too much light, it will fade more quickly, and too much heat can dry it out. Thus, you should keep your leather stored in a place where it is cool and dark.

Related Questions

Tan-Kote is a protective varnish that will protect your leatherwork against dirt and stains while also providing an attractive shine. This revolutionary product will work as a sealant to keep your work shining after many years of use and will also provide you with extended protection against the elements!

What is the difference between Tan Kote and bag Kote?

Bag Kote: This will give you an easy-to-clean, soft finish. Tan Kote: And this one too can do that – with an added benefit of being able to resist some water stains. Bag Kote finishes are made from a non-resin material and are perfect for leather goods such as purses and handbags while tan kotes are designed for items like shoes or boots where more flexibility is needed such as saddles or belts.

What does Resolene do to leather?

Applying Resolene to your leather will help it withstand water damage while also giving it a protective, glossy coating. This product comes in three neutral shades and two earth tones so you can find one perfect for you.

Is Tan Kote waterproof?

Tan Kote is a protective top finish but it is not totally waterproof. Spots from water might show up so if you need a weather-resistant coating, use Fiebing’s Resolene.

Tan Kote vs. Resolene Final Notes

When it comes to Tan Kote vs. Resolene, the ideal choice for you mainly comes down to the top coat’s permanence and sheen. If you want a shinier finish and a top coat that you do not need to regularly reapply, Resolene is probably the best choice for you. On the other hand, you might really like the fact that you can easily remove Tan Kote, and perhaps you would prefer a finish that is not as shiny, as this can sometimes appear more artificial.

Whichever top coat you opt for, your leather will be better protected.

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