Difference between leather and faux leather (and synthetic)
We often talk about the difference between leather and faux leather, but one of the considerations that should be made is between leather, faux leather, and synthetic leather in order to have a complete point of view.
When shopping for furniture, clothing, or accessories, it’s very important to be informed about the various types of fabric available on the market.
And typically, the fabric can resemble each other, but they could have very different characteristics.
So, let’s take a look at the differences between leather, faux leather, and synthetic leather so that we can clear up some of the doubts that typically confuse you.
Differences between leather and faux leather: Why choose leather?
Leather, as well as cowhide, is obtained from animal skin throughout the “tanning process” where the skin is processed to be used for commercial purposes.
Leather is often referred to as a harder, less flexible product, which is usually used to make the soles of shoes…
… While the term leather instead refers to a soft fabric used for clothes and accessories.
However, this distinction is not correct, as both variants should be called leather
So, the processing that is carried, that is tanning, serves to make the material malleable and more workable in the fashion world and design world.
Then, the final result depends on how the processing is carried out.
And as with any other material, choosing to make leather products has many advantages and disadvantages.
But let’s have looked at the advantages in detail:
- It is a very valuable material;
- It can be used to produce various products: furniture, clothes, jackets, shoes, etc. and it’s very versatile;
- It is resistant;
- It is pleasant to the touch and the eye, creating an excellent impression;
- It is perfect for allergy sufferers because it’s very easy to clean, and thanks to its special texture ensure that mites don’t penetrate.
However, it also has two main disadvantages, namely:
- It cannot be washed and can only be moisturized with special products;
- It’s a very precious material but also very expensive.
Differences between leather and faux leather: what it’s meant for faux leather
When we talk about the difference between leather and faux leather, we tend to think that faux leather is not from animals.
But this is not actually the case…because eco-leather is also a material of animal origin, but it is processed differently, which is the reason why it’s called “faux-eco”.
And when it is tanned, we try to pollute the environment as little as possible, using vegetable substances instead of chemicals.
But what are its main characteristics?
- It is more expensive than leather because its eco-friendly manufacturing process is more expensive;
- It is very particular because of its discoloration;
- It changes with the sun and time;
- It is thicker and has an irregular grain.
Synthetic leather: the mystery is revealed
You may not know this, but what is often called faux leather is actually synthetic leather.
It is a material of artificial origin derived from plastics and is frequently referred to as “imitation leather”.
In addition, synthetic leather is a product of non-animal origin and is obtained by covering fabrics such as linen, cotton, or synthetic fibres with plastic materials.
And this, like all fabrics, has advantages and disadvantages.
Let’s see what the advantages are:
- It is a cheap and more accessible material than leather;
- Resistant to heat and does not change color when exposed to light;
- It is very easy to clean;
- It is water-resistant.
Let’s move on to the negative characteristics:
- It is not breathable, unlike leather;
- It deteriorates or ruins easily, creating cracks through which the underlying material can be seen;
- It is only an aesthetic imitation without having the same softness of touch.
How about you? Did you know the difference between leather and synthetic leather? And the existence of imitation leather?
Well, in any case, I hope this article has cleared up all your doubts and that you can now make more informed purchases.
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See you next time, bye!
Don’t miss my next article on how to recognize the real leather of a luxury bag.