Glue is an adhesive that binds substances together, and some varieties work better on specific materials like leather. Certain types of glue are renowned for their adhesive and wear-resistant capabilities, such as polyurethane glues, cements, and cyanocrylate-based glues. These glues are thus particularly strong when used as a leather glue, as are glues that are water-resistant and flexible. Further, leather glues should have durable lid sealants and lid applicators that best match the glue's use.
Of course, the most effective leather glue will possess durable adhesive abilities. A polyurethane glue may be useful for leather, as it creates a foam that seeps into small fabric gaps and forges a stronger bond when exposed to moisture. Rubber cement also works well as a leather glue because due to its fast evaporation and the rubber seal that is left behind when it evaporates. In fact, individuals that often work with leather like shoe makers and movie props workers frequently utilize rubber cement.
A good leather glue should have many other properties. For one, since leather is often worn, the glue should possess flexibility. Rubber cement is known for this quality. In addition, a leather glue should be largely water resistant, heat resistant, and it should withstand the wear that often accompanies leather use. All of these qualities characterize the animal rawhide that constitutes leather, so leather glue should be reflective of these particular properties.
Leather glue products that contain a base known as cyanoacrylate are particularly long-lasting as well. These glues are so effective because they contain no solvents that tamper with the drying process. When refrigerated, this glue can last for years, whereas other superglues might dry out and prove unusable after only one application. Further, cyanoacrylate-based glues do not typically discolor leather.
Methods of application might be affected by the particular area where the glue will be placed. Squeeze tubes and brush-on applicators, for example, are convenient for large surface areas. If you only wish to seal a small area such as a tear, however, then you might opt for a dropper bottle. For more precise area applications, a push point applicator might be the better bet.
Opinions on products are diverse, but consumer review sites can provide a good overview of a glue brand's benefits and drawbacks. Many of these sites also offer expert opinions, comparisons, and ratings. For a more targeted evaluation of glues for leather, you might peruse the message boards of companies that sell leather products or of hobbyists that make use of leather products like motorcycle riders.