Knowledge: Leather vs. Faux Leather

Design Insider is delighted to share Yarwood Leather’s insight on the differences between leather and faux leather. Many people often wonder about the differences between faux and real leather. The truth is there are pros and cons for both and it simply depends on personal preference and what you’re looking to gain from the material. Buying materials for seating can often take a lot of deliberation to ensure you are choosing the right option for you or your project.

Here, we discuss what you need to consider if you’re in the market for leather and outline the differences between faux and genuine materials.

Spot the difference

The fundamental difference between the two is that genuine leather is made from animal hides, such as cattle, buffalo or oxen. Faux leather is made from a plastic base and is then treated with wax, dye or polyurethane to create the colour and texture.

The biggest difference between the two is that real leather is truly unique, as no two hides are the same. Cattle leather often features hallmarks of its origin, like stretch marks, scars, and veins and this adds to the character and beauty of the product. Genuine leather also features inconsistent pores and marks, which means it’s beautifully differentiated from the rest and has a distinctive look. Faux leather is very uniform – even if it is created to look natural, as the pores are synthetically created.

Made to last

An advantage of real leather is its durability. Real leather can last for years without getting damaged. It grows with a piece of furniture, the natural nature of the product means wearing only enhances the look of leather.

A big selling point for faux leather is its price. Given that it’s mass-produced, it’s often considerably cheaper than genuine leather.

Distinguishing features

Authentic leather can also be distinguished from faux leathers due to its luxurious appearance, feel and smell. However, many faux leathers can be as good as the real thing – it simply comes down to personal preference and what you’re looking for.

Contact Yarwood Leather through the BCFA Product Finder.

The BCFA Product Finder is a unique search engine, created for the Design Sector to source products and services for commercial projects from BCFA accredited companies. With over 200 member profiles showcasing project completions, new products, catalogue’s, films, sector research and much more; you’ll be able to find the appropriate product or service for your design.


About Jess Mockler

Jess is a Marketing & Event professional who joined the BCFA as a Marketing Executive in 2019. Working closely with designers and BCFA members, Jess has published an array of content for the Commercial sector.
View all posts by Jess Mockler →