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Vegan Leather is an innovative faux fabric which looks like leather, feels like leather but it is not created out of animal skin. It can be made from innovative and sustainable materials such as pineapple leaves, cork, apple peels, cactus leaves, other fruit waste, and recycled plastic and used to create products with minimal environmental impact. Vegan Leather is cheaper than real leather and is very popular for making sofas and seating. Learn more about vegan leather, its usage and why you should use it.

FAQs

Vegan leather is an awesome vegan-friendly alternative to genuine leather products. Whether you're looking at synthetic leather furniture because of the ethics behind keeping things animal-free or you're interested in a more affordable option than genuine leather, we've got you covered. Keep reading for our answers to your most-asked questions.

What is vegan leather? Why does it belong in your home?

Vegan leather is a replication leather that isn’t made with animal products. It is made out of natural products and also of polymers. This ‘pleather’ as it is sometimes known looks so close to real leather that it is easy to be mistaken. Vegan leather is a cruelty free, more sustainable alternative to real leather. It is such a versatile material that it can be used to make many fashion items, as a substitute for leather. Lately, in the furniture world, couches, chairs and sofas made out of vegan leather have become very popular because of the unlimited choices in color and finishes offered and cheaper price than real leather.

What is vegan leather made of?

Vegan leather is also referred to as faux leather, polyester leather, synthetic leather, or pleather. While real leather products are made from animal hides, vegan leather is made from two plastic-based materials: polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and polyurethane (PU) which are produced by the petroleum industry.

There are some vegan leather products made with plant-based or recycled materials. These natural vegan leather options include tree bark, leaves, paper, recycled plastic or rubber, cork (cork leather), muskin (made from mushrooms), and a variety of other plant-based options. It can be made from innovative and sustainable materials such as pineapple leaves, cork, apple peels, other fruit waste, mango waste and recycled plastic.

Is vegan leather real or fake?

Vegan leather is artificially made leather. Of course it is not real leather as it does not come from animal skin, but it is manufactured by combining different kind of natural materials and some polymers to create a fabric which looks and feels like leather. There are ecological concerns with all types of leather, real or vegan, but ultimately, faux leather contains no animal products, and causes no cruelty to animals.

Does vegan leather last?

There are many questions on the durability of Vegan leather and we will try to give you an informed view. When vegan leather is well made and not like earlier versions like single layer PVC, it proves surprisingly durable. A well-made pleather jacket will be just as good as one of real leather and with proper care will last 5-8 years. Now what about vegan leather furniture, you ask. Well, just like any leather couch, which is mounted on a durable well structured frame, a vegan leather couch will last long too. A good quality thick vegan leather will work as well on a couch or chair like any other upholstery fabric. Just like normal leather, you would have to take some precautions from any hot surface or sharp objects or direct exposure to sunlight.

In fact there are some benefits of using vegan leather over real leather. Because it isn’t made of animal hide, it doesn’t need to be treated regularly to keep it supple. Faux leather is also resistant to cracking like real leather.

A bonus for choosing a leather alternative for your furniture, vegan leather is waterproof and very easy to care for. This makes it a great synthetic leather choice for dining room and living room furniture or rooms where you spend a lot of time. Vegan leather dining chairs and couches can be wiped down very quickly.

All in all, just take care of your items the way you would with other products. Don’t be rough, but make sure you still use them!

Vegan leather vs real leather

While vegan leather and animal leather look very similar, they have a few key differences.

  • Vegan leather is thinner and more lightweight than genuine leather.
  • Vegan leather will soften and stretch over time, but not as much as animal leather.
  • Vegan leather is very uniform because each pore is synthetically created. Real leather is unique because no two animal skins are the same.
  • Vegan leather is more affordable than real leather because it is mass-produced.
  • Vegan leather holds dye better than genuine leather, so you have a larger variety of colors to choose from when shopping for a sofa, accent chairs, or a pouf.
  • Vegan leather will not crack unlike real leather
  • Vegan leather is an eco-friendly leather alternative. It's an ethical, sustainable, and cruelty-free fabric that mimics the look and feel of real leather. Leather processing is environmentally harmful as it releases harmful chemicals into water.
  • Real leather lasts for very long time and you may have seen heirloom leather chairs or desks passed from one generation to another; synthetic leather does not have that kind of durability.
  • What are the disadvantages of vegan leather?

     

  • Vegan leather is a mass produced fabric, so it does not have the rich look and feel of real leather. Vegan leather is very uniform because each pore is synthetically created. Real leather is unique because no two animal skins are the same
  • It is not as durable as real leather is.
  • Vegan leather can not mimic the lived in feel and look of genuine leather. It may not feel as comfortable against the skin too. Faux leather, especially PVC based, isn’t breathable either where as real leather has pores through which skin is able to breathe. So for clothing items such as jackets, vegan leather can be uncomfortable when worn for long periods of time.
  • Does vegan leather crack?

    Unlike genuine leather vegan leather does not crack with use. It may soften and stretch a tiny bit over time but it will not stretch too much and crack. Vegan leather is very uniform because each pore is synthetically created and the structure holds undisturbed for longer periods of time than animal hide.

    Can vegan leather furniture last?

    Vegan leather, when it is well made and not single layer PVC, is surprisingly durable. Vegan leather is often a lot thinner than real leather and much more light weight which is great for fashion or furniture as it makes it potentially easier to work with, however it also makes it less durable than real leather.

    All in all, just take care of your items the way you would with other products. Don’t be rough, but make sure you still use them!

    Is vegan leather expensive?

    Faux leather is typically a lot cheaper than real leather products. This is because it’s cheaper to produce synthetic plastic leather than it is to produce real leather.

    Craftsmanship of leather products is a highly skilled job and bespoke leather products such as sofas, jackets and luggage can be thousands of dollars. Manufacturers can command these prices because they are considered both high quality and highly durable. Real leather continues to be popular because there isn’t really another material like it, which is why faux leather tries to imitate it so much. Real leather is very expensive to produce and comes with its own host of environmental issues, aside from the fact that it comes from an animal.

    That being said, we think it makes absolute sense to use vegan leather for furniture because of its affordability and cost difference with genuine leather. It is ideal for large pieces of furniture. Vegan leather sofas have the leather-like look and cool softness without the need for animal skin. Just pile on the throw blankets and cushions.

    If you're considering updating your home office, opt for vegan leather office chairs or a vegan leather loveseat. They're more affordable when compared to animal leather products for your workspace, and yet, they still look like the real thing and make a lasting impression.

    Are vegan leather couches comfortable?

    Vegan leather couches are almost as comfortable as real leather couches, the caveat being that high quality polymers or natural substrate are used. Previously, the PVC kind of single sheet leather was quite uncomfortable and tacky but now technology has evolved enough to produce real supple and high quality artificial leather. Couches, chairs, headboards are a great fit for artificial leather because it is unlike vegan leather clothing which has to be worn on the body.

    Does vegan leather peel?

    No vegan leather does not peel.

    How do you clean vegan leather?

    How to clean vegan leather is a question that is asked time and time again by consumers. The answer is very straight forward, and similar to how you clean real leather. You can buy faux leather cleaning wipes, however wipes for real leather will work just as well in this case. Gently rub the wipe all over the faux leather, paying particular attention to any stains.

    Another solution for how to clean faux leather is with a mild detergent. One of the issues with both vegan and real leather is that it absorbs things such as ink, oil and wine. So, if you are wondering how to remove dye stains from faux leather, the solution is lukewarm water with a small amount of a mild detergent in it. Wipe down the back with an undyed cloth, and then wipe again with a cloth and only water. Repeat a final time with a completely dry cloth.

    If you can’t do this immediately after a spill, try and get some talcum powder or cornstarch onto a greasy stain. This acts as a natural faux leather stain remover and you can wipe it off once you get a chance.

    Another top tip for caring for vegan leather is to avoid heat. If your item does get wet, always leave it to air dry. Never use any form of artificial heat on vegan leather, as this can damage it.

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