Understanding the difference in materials

Understanding the difference in materials main image Understanding the difference in materials image

Understanding the difference in materials used in motorcycle clothing

It can be a bit baffling when you are attempting to understand what some of the technical specifications of the materials used in motorcycle clothing. Our Shark Leathers' buying guide on understanding the materials used is designed to help you make an educated decision on the motorcycle items on our website.


An aramid fibre provides high levels of abrasion/tear/cut and heat resistance. They are typically gold in colour and require very sharp shears for cutting. You may sometimes hear of Aramid referred to as Kevlar, the trading name DuPont use for it. Used as a secondary layer in garments like Denim jeans, shirts, race suits and gloves. It can be affected by exposure to UV light over time.

Aniline waxed cowhide

This leather is drum dyes with special soluble dyes that soak through the cowhide and then dried. A special wax is applied for a high fashion appearance> It's super comfortable while still offering excellent abrasion and tear resistance.

CORDURA® Ballistic 

Derived from the original ballistic woven nylon designed for military body armour, CORDURA Ballistic is thick, strong and fabricated with high tensile nylon yarns that are extremely resistant to tears, cutting and abrasion.


Cowhide is excellent quality leather. It is abrasion and tear resistant. It typically comes in two types of grain. Top grain, which is sanded and treated. It is easily recognisable by it's a highly polished look. The full-grain cowhide has the hair removed and undergoes the least amount of processing. The entire hide remains intact and like a fingerprint, each hide has its own distinctive grain. Full grain leather is the strongest of the cowhides.


A clever blend of Nylon/Polyester that's woven for stretch designed to ensure movement is unrestricted while still being comfortable to wear.


A 3-layer silicone coated with a waterproof and breathable membrane. It's most often used in linings inside motorcycle gloves and boots.


Durability and strength, HTC is a nylon material that is abrasion and tear-resistant, while still be soft, pliable and comfortable when used in motorcycle clothing.

Kangaroo Leather

Kangaroo leather is up to 10 times stronger than regular cowhide. Kangaroos have very little hair and require little processing, therefore the hide is thinner and more lightweight. Kangaroo leather maintains excellent abrasion resistance and provides ergonomic comfort.


It has the look and feel of cotton with the superior performance of polyester.

Mesh K-492 sometimes known as Waffle Mesh

Abrasion and tear resistant, mesh is the go-to for ventilation in all season motorcycle jackets, ski jackets and is often used in conjunction with other types of fabric.

synthetic fibres thinner than a strand of silk are blended from polyesters and polyamides. Microfibres absorb bacteria and viruses, and are often used to cleaning sponges and mops, they also wick away sweat, so are used inside gloves, boots and jackets.

Ripstop Nylon

Tough and durable, Ripstop fabrics woven from nylon using a special reinforcing technique makes them tear and rip resistant. ripping. During the weaving process, thick threads used for reinforcement are interwoven at regular intervals in a crosshatch pattern. Ripstop nylon may be waterproof, water resistant, fire resistant, or will not allow air or water through. It is available in a variety of different weights and ranges in texture from silky and soft to a crisp or stiff 

SinAqua Pro

Tough and robust, this 3-layer membrane allows the fabric to breathe while still keeping you dry. It's rated at 11500gms of breathability  The larger the number the more breathable the fabric. It also has a waterproof rating of more than 15k. This means it is suitable for moderate rain and average snow.


Renowned for its durability, the 3-layer material features the same elements as the SinAqua Pro, only it features less breathability, and is still water resistant, able to withstand moderate rain with light pressure. It's rated at 5000g breathability and 10k waterproof.

100% waterproof (more than 20k, the scale only goes up to 20,000mm), 100% windproof and 100% breathable

Waxed Cotton

Waxed cotton is a fabric fused with paraffin or bee’s wax for water-resistance clothing. It is most commonly used in waxed cotton motorcycle jackets and coat. Some manufacturers may even use it in water-repellent headwear, bags and footwear. You'll know if you've ever been saturated while wearing cotton, it absorbs it like a sponge. Impregnating the material with wax instantly makes it water-repellent.

For more information contact enquiries@sharkleathers.com.au