How To Tell the Difference Between Leather and Faux Leather

How To Tell the Difference Between Leather and Faux Leather

November 22, 2023

The differences between faux leather vs real leather make a big difference in the quality and value of the products that contain either. The most obvious difference is that leather is the hide of an animal – most often a cowhide. Faux leather is a manufactured textile that looks and generally feels like leather.

Leather and faux leather are used to make similar products, including seat upholstery, footwear, gloves, and similar products. But they have very different properties that can significantly affect how well they work and last.

Advantages of Leather

Leather has the major advantage of durability. It is a tough and durable product that can withstand heat, resist cutting and tearing, and last for many decades or even longer.

You have to care for leather to get the best results from it. Well-conditioned leather that is maintained might last indefinitely. It also is soft and supple and can conform somewhat to the person who wears or uses it.

Leather also has a terrific look that ranges from matte to semi-gloss and can resist penetration by water and other liquids when conditioned with mink oil, bear grease, and other types of leather conditioners.

No two leather hides look exactly the same, which helps to make leather products more unique. Each hide has its own natural markings caused by the animal’s veins, scars, and stretch marks.

Advantages of Faux Leather

The single greatest advantage of faux leather is its affordability. Because it is manufactured and not grown, the cost to produce faux leather is much less than the cost to remove an animal hide and put it through the leather-tanning process.

Faux leather has a uniform appearance and artificial pores, making it easier to create matching pieces for various uses than with leather. Faux leather can range from a satin to a glossy appearance.

Faux leather is thinner than actual leather, which makes it easier to have more feeling with your fingers if you are wearing gloves. Faux leather works well for clothing and many types of upholstery and generally is more comfortable to wear than leather.

How To Tell if Leather Is Real or Fake

Real leather generally is thicker and has a much tougher structure than faux leather. Faux leather might have a textile backing that helps to hold it together. However, higher-end faux leather can be thicker and look more like real leather.

Because faux leather is created via a manufacturing process, it generally will not hold up as well to heat as real leather. That is why welding gloves are made of real leather and not faux leather.

Which To Choose: Faux Leather vs Real Leather

Faux and real leather have many great uses and can produce outstanding results. The experts at Acadian Leather in Clinton, LA, can help you determine whether you prefer real leather or faux leather for a custom project or a more standardized product.

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