Leather? A polymer? That's right! Leather is made from animal skin, rawhide, as some call it. Skin? A polymer? That's right! Animal skin, yours included, is made of a polymer called collagen. So are your fingernails. Collagen belongs to the family of polymers called proteins. Proteins are one of many naturally occuring polymers. They are also are a type of polyamide, and are in fact very similar to nylon. Rawhide is made into leather by a process called tanning, in which the collagen in the rawhide is crosslinked to make it stronger, more durable, and to keep it from rotting.

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