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Article: What is Vegan Leather? Everything You Need To Know

What is Vegan Leather? Everything You Need To Know

What is Vegan Leather? Everything You Need To Know

Are you entirely new to the concept of vegan leather? Or looking to go beyond the simple vegan diet and eyeing for a holistic vegan lifestyle? Either way, keep on reading as details about the vegan leather are definitely going to interest you.

Over the years, faux leather has garnered a good deal of appreciation and praise from discerning customers. In fact, it retains such a beautiful resemblance to traditional leather that you may not see any distinction between it and the real thing. The best thing? You feel genuinely good about your selection. With that said, let’s dig a little deeper into the subject.

What is Vegan Leather?

First things first, let’s address the question that's on everybody's mind – what exactly is vegan leather? In simple words, vegan leather refers to any leather-like material made from synthetic rather than animal skins. Still, such materials imitate the characteristics of genuine leather products, such as durability, strength and flexibility.

Surprisingly vegan leather has been in use since the 20th century. It was called faux leather back then and was considered a cheaper alternative to real one. Due to growing awareness, vegan lifestyle became popular and resulted in renaming of faux leather as vegan leather.

What Is The Material Used in Vegan Leather?

Vegan fashion is on the rise, and that means more people are looking for vegan leather material. But how vegan leather is made? What exactly is used to achieve that leather-like appearance?

Various materials are used to make this type of leather that  isn’t made of animal skin. Most commonly, vegan leather is made from polyurethane, which is a synthetic material. The end product is not same as genuine leather, but it does have similar properties.

Other than polyurethane, cotton, cork, and pineapple leaves are also used for this very purpose. Since, it is mostly made from recycled materials, it earns some deserved praise for being environmentally friendly as well. That’s a big bonus along with its cruelty free feature.

Why Should You Consider Vegan Leather?

Each and every individual has their own shopping choices and preferences. But suppose, you’re just a regular guy; wondering why you should opt vegan leather at all. Here are few points that might convince you to make a solid choice.  

Animal Cruelty

While it may seem odd to think about, high-quality leather upholstery takes a certain amount of animal skin and guts to create those products you love. And if don’t like harming animals in any way, you may be thinking twice before grabbing that real leather jacket.


In addition to harming animals, leather production comes at an expense. It demands much time and energy from experts, farmers, and such like to raise, cultivate, and feed them before killing them. It's a lengthy endeavor that involves a lot of people. It makes the process costly for the consumer when buying leather goods, which is why vegan leather is becoming more popular – it is an equally high-quality alternative but often cheaper across the board.


While genuine leather is still produced from animals and contributes to the suffering of animals, it is not eco-friendly in any way. It is tough to recycle, and the oil used for tanning accounts for a high amount of waste. On the other hand, vegan leather is entirely plant-based and contains no animal by-products whatsoever, making it a far eco-friendlier alternative. As plants are renewable sources of oils, these products are also naturally biodegradable.

Harsh Truth About Leather Industry

The harsh truth about the leather industry is that it is one of the most environmentally damaging industries in the world. Tanning leather, the process of making it soft and durable, requires vast amounts of toxic chemicals, which end up polluting waterways and soil. In addition, animal skins are often treated with chromium salts to make them shiny – these salts are carcinogenic and can cause skin irritation and breathing problems.

Leather production also contributes to climate change. The manufacture of synthetic materials such as vegan leather creates far fewer greenhouse gas emissions than traditional leather production. And while animal agriculture is a significant contributor to climate change, producing vegan leather does not require the use of land or water that could be used to raise crops or livestock. Ultimately, there is no real need for animal skin to be used to manufacture clothing or accessories.

How Faux Leather is Different From Real Leather

Vegan leather may be a newer term in the vocabulary, but the material has been around for quite some time. Unlike traditional leather, vegan leather is made without the use of animal skins. It might make it sound like a lesser material, but that could not be further from the truth. Vegan leather is often made from materials like cotton, polyurethane, and even recycled plastic bottles. It is more environmentally friendly than traditional leather and can be just as durable. In fact, many people find vegan leather to be more comfortable than traditional leather due to its softer, more flexible texture.

Frequently Asked Questions

1.    Is vegan leather biodegradable?

Vegan leather is a popular term for materials made from non-animal sources. The most common type of vegan leather is made from polyurethane, which is a synthetic material. While polyurethane is not biodegradable, some newer types of vegan leather are made from biodegradable materials, such as cork or pineapple leaves. These materials can be composted or recycled at the end of their life cycle.

2.    Is Vegan leather durable?

Vegan leather is made from various materials, including cotton, polyurethane, and polyvinyl chloride (PVC), all of which are highly durable. In addition, because vegan leather is non-animal-based, it doesn't wear or tear as easily as animal-based leather.

3.    Is vegan leather better than animal leather?

Yes, vegan leather is better because it is entirely vegan and cruelty-free. The quality of vegan leather is much better than natural leather. It does not smell like an animal; it is soft and supple and will not stain.


In conclusion, vegan leather is an excellent alternative to traditional leather. It is environmentally friendly, cruelty-free, and fashion-forward. If you are looking for an ethical and sustainable way to wear leather, vegan leather is the way to go!

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