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What Is Faux Leather Made Out Of?

BY Buffalo Jackson Insight
BY Grit Media

Revised 9/17

We see it in hundreds of stores in belts, shoes, purses, wallets, and so many other goods. So what is faux leather? What is it made out of? How is it created? We have the answers below.

How Faux Leather is Created

Faux leather, also known as synthetic leather, begins with a fabric base such as polyester. The fabric is then given an imitation leather finish and texture with wax, dye, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), or polyurethane.  

What is Faux Leather?

Faux leather is obviously designed to look like real leather, but the surface of synthetic leather is uniform. (A very regular, even texture pattern is a sign that it’s a machine-made piece.) Faux leather also feels cold and unnaturally even compared to real leather. When you press your finger into the surface of faux leather, rather than stretching or wrinkling like real leather, the synthetic material simply depresses under your finger while still retaining its shape. Because of the chemicals used in its production, faux leather can also smell like plastic. (If you smell a plasticky, chemical odor, you can bet the leather is synthetic.)  

Want to learn more about the difference between faux leather and real leather? Read up about the difference on our blog. 

Does Faux Leather Last?

Faux leather does not last nearly as long as real leather, and unfortunately, when it begins to wear out, it does not wear out attractively. It’s much cheaper than real leather, though, which is good - because you’ll be replacing it regularly.

What's the Best Alternative to Faux Leather?

Don't want to mess with faux leather? We don't blame you.Real leather is not only durable, but has a unique rustic look that can’t be mimicked. Learn more about full grain leather and why it's a great investment. Unlike faux leather, our real leather products can be conditioned and cleaned to last for decades to come. Click to check out our collection of real leather bags and more. 


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