Nubuck is a smooth top-grain leather that has been sanded or buffed on the grain side. It gives a slight nap of short protein fibers, producing a velvet-like surface. Unlike suede, nubuck leather is made from the outside of a hide, which means it is smoother, thicker, and more durable.
Nubuck leather is commonly used for shoes, jackets, wallets, handbags, briefcases, furniture, and many other items. Considering its history of being associated with fashionable figures and aristocracy, it is suitable for both luxury goods and less-exclusive items.
Because nubuck is made from top-grain leather, it is breathable, long-lasting, and relatively durable. Not only is it soft and comfy, it also looks great no matter what product it is used in. It does not require polishing or shining, and requires less maintenance than many other types of leather due to its velvety surface which just requires occasional cleaning. One of the downsides of nubuck leather, however, is that it is not suitable for applications where its surface will be exposed to mud, dirt and grit. Oils and grime can stain the nubuck, so care needs to be taken when wearing it outdoors.
Despite this, genuine nubuck leather is considered a high quality leather and has a great reputation in the fashion industry. The luxurious feel and smoothness of nubuck make for a comfortable and quality item. It does take a little more care than the usual full-grain leather but it gives a unique look and feel that will make you stand out from the crowd.
Most importantly, even if nubuck leather darkens when wet, it will dry back to its original color.