Faux leather materials like vinyl have come a long way since they were first invented in the 60s. Today it can sometimes be hard to tell the difference between real and synthetic leather, making vinyl’s lower price tag even more alluring. Though vinyl furniture is an affordable synthetic alternative, there are many differences between leather and vinyl beyond cost. Here are a few things to consider the next time you find yourself in a leather vs vinyl furniture debate.
Leather Vs Vinyl: Durability
Both leather and vinyl materials are very durable and will typically last for many years without noticeable signs of wear. Both materials are long lasting but can be ripped or town from sharp objects such as keys, pocket knives, or belt buckles. Vinyl furniture does crack over time, whereas real leather furniture ages more gracefully. While leather tends to stay cooler on hot day than vinyl materials, vinyl is more UV fade resistant than real leather and will keep its vibrant color year round even in sunny spaces.
Leather Vs Vinyl: Appearance
Leather is classic, sophisticated, and beautiful. Made from cured, treated hides of cows, leather is a simple and supple material. While a leather sofa can feel stiff when first purchased, it becomes soft and pliable after regular wear. Overtime leather will develop a gorgeous luster and patina and leather couches are generally very comfortable. Since it is a synthetic material, vinyl furniture doesn’t develop the same luster or patina as real leather, however there are many advantages to synthetics. Vinyl can be produced in virtually any color, style, or pattern, offering more variety when shopping. A high gloss finish can be achieved with vinyl as opposed to leather. Vinyl furniture is cruelty-free and polyurethane vinyls are environmentally friendly.
Leather Vs Vinyl: Care & Cleaning
Leather’s water resistant nature makes it easy to clean. Spilled food or liquids can quickly be wiped or brushed off. Leather furniture can easily be cleaned with a cloth, warm water, and mild soap. Vinyl furniture is also easy to clean as it is naturally stain resistant. You typically won’t need anything more than a wet rag to clean vinyl furniture. However, if you’d like to use additional cleaning solutions, spray the surface with a mild solution and then wipe dry. Keep in mind though that you should never use anything stronger than dish soap or an all-purpose cleaner on vinyl furniture.