How to Dye Alligator Skin

By Laura Nations

Alligator skin is a type of leather that is used to make many luxury goods like handbags, suitcases, shoes and jewelry. This high-quality material features smooth scales that make it easy for leather dye to distribute evenly over its surface. This opens up the option of giving alligator skin a fresh appearance with a new color. The hardest part of the process is deciding what color dye you want to use.

Alligator skin is used for many purposes including making accessories like handbags and shoes.

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Step 1

Dampen a sponge with distilled water and wash the surface of the alligator skin thoroughly. Then dry the skin with a clean hand towel. The surface must be completely dry.

Step 2

Lay a plastic tarp out on a flat surface. Make sure it is out of the way because the skin will need time to dry. Shake the pigment dye in its container before pouring it into a plastic bowl. Put on a pair of latex gloves.

Step 3

Lay the now clean alligator skin on the tarp. Dip a sponge in the bowl of dye.

Step 4

Paint the alligator skin in vertical lines using the sponge. Dip the sponge back in the dye as necessary. Blow on any air bubbles that form so that they pop. Let the dye dry overnight. The next day when the dye is completely dry, you can apply another coat of dye if necessary.

Step 5

Touch the skin gently with your finger to determine if it is dry. Once it is no longer tacky you can remove it from the tarp.