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Review: Best Faux Leather Fabrics

Is the upholstery of your dining chair torn? Is that leather couch cracked and scratched? Well, in any case, if your issue involves leather fabrics, then you might want to consider reupholstering with faux leather.

Faux leather fabric is artificial leather made from synthetic materials — it has a plastic base, treated with polyurethane and wax. It appears just like genuine leather but costs much less! Since it’s a budget-friendly solution, people use it for upholstery, clothing, accessories, and much more. It is a go-to choice for DIY enthusiasts and craftsmen.

Below, you will find some of the best faux leather fabric options on the market. We have also added an insightful buying guide to make purchasing as simple and enjoyable as possible.

Best Faux Leather Fabric

NAT Leathers Brown Distressed 2 Tone Oily Faux Leather Fabric - Best Overall

The NAT brown distressed leather has a very intense, rich color. Its full-grain textured surface makes it a genuine leather lookalike — you won’t be able to distinguish between them! Having passed CA65 policies, one can be sure no restricted substance is present in this faux leather’s composition. It is also a perfect pick for various projects, like upholstery covers, bags, and more, due to its high durability. The NAT brown distressed leather has 0.9mm thickness that is considerably thin, but that makes it easy to stretch and apply to your projects. You can conveniently fold and cut the fabric with ease. NAT also offers other colors and black and acorn.

TORRAMI Soft Synthetic PU Faux Leather Fabric - Runner Up

Realistic & classy, this TORRAMI green faux leather is the best choice to upgrade your upholstery. It has a dark, rich color and a classic pebbled pattern texture. Together, the PU fabric appears realistic and of high-quality. It is sold by the yard and is 0.95mm thick, so you get a reasonable quantity for the price. The leather has substantial water-resistant abilities and won't get scratched or crack easily. When using it for projects, it is easy to cut and sew and is pretty soft to the touch, making it great for upholstery on chairs or headboards.

Fabric & Fabric Black Cabo Faux Leather Fabric - Most Quiet

If you want to revamp your dining chairs and sofas, then this premium black faux leather is an ideal choice. The Fabric & Fabric faux leather has a textured black surface that gives a little bit of shine to the pebbled finish. It is made of 100-percent polyvinylchloride so you can expect it to withstand all sorts of wear and tear. You can even put it in the washing machine without worry. The fabric is cut by the yard to order, so if you need a large quantity you'll be able to get some large pieces.

VViViD Brown Weatherproof Faux Leather Fabric - Contender

The VVIVID brown faux leather looks worn and vintage, however it certainly is one of the most long-lasting and versatile ones. It has a textured marine vinyl exterior with poly fabric backing. As a result, it offers immense strength and durability. The brown-colored faux leather is completely waterproof and resistant to scratches, making it perfect to use for a variety of products. It is even UV-resistant so it won't fade if exposed to lots of sunlight. It is also highly flexible which makes cutting and sewing an effortless experience for all your projects.

NAT LEATHERS Cognac British Tan Faux Leather Fabric - Also Consider

With a warm cognac color, this NAT faux leather is an amazing choice for crafting leather clothing and accessories. It has a matte, subtle edge to its finish that makes your projects appear classy. The NAT cognac faux leather has a realistic textured surface that one can easily mistake for genuine leather! It comes in one-yard measurements and is 0.9mm thick, making this suitable for smaller projects. The well-thought dimensions and thinness make it flexible; it has no stiffness or rigidity. You can fold, cut, stitch, and glue this faux leather fabric with ease.

Buyer's Guide

Why should you buy faux leather fabric?

If you want to create unique projects or update your furnishings on a budget, then faux leather fabrics are a fantastic choice.

Faux leather is imitation leather using synthetic materials. It comes in hundreds of different colors, grains, and textures that appear just like real leather. Hence, you can use realistic faux leather fabric without having to overspend. Since it comes in a variety of prints and colors, you can use different faux leather fabrics together to make a stylish space or your own trendy outfit.

Faux Leather vs. Real Leather

When compared to genuine leather, faux leather is a great alternative. Its synthetic composition enables it to excel in many aspects, where real leather falls behind.

Here are some prominent differences between faux and real leather:

Maintenance

Faux leather is durable and easy to maintain. It doesn’t fade or retain moisture like genuine leather, so you can easily clean it with water. There’s no need to purchase dedicated leather cleaners. Plus, you can also place it anywhere without worrying much about sunlight, humidity, and other factors.

Ease of use

When designing, faux leather proves to be more flexible and moldable. You can cut and sew the fabric more easily. With real leather, you have to be more careful with your cuts and how you stretch the material. Faux leather is even great for beginners with little DIY experience since it is such a versatile and user-friendly fabric.

Affordability

Unlike genuine leathers, faux leather comes in at budget-friendly prices. A yard of real leather costs approximately $25 to $40, whereas faux leather costs $10 to $25. That’s a huge difference! If you're working on a large project, this difference in cost can really add up if you choose real leather. Plus, it is unlikely someone will really be able to tell the difference between real leather and its budget-friendly alternative.

Uniform looks

Real leathers can have varying textures and looks. Meanwhile, synthetic fabrics are much more consistent as each piece gets manufactured from the same stock. This makes it easier to match different pieces of faux leather, whereas you may not be able to do that with pieces of real leather.

Features to Consider in the Best Faux Leather Fabric

Above, we have reviewed the best faux leather fabrics. However, if you haven’t found the perfect match, then do not worry. There are hundreds of faux leather fabrics left to explore!

Here are all the important features to consider when purchasing the best faux leather fabric:

Type of faux leather

Although you will find a diversity of faux leathers, there are only two popular choices:

- Polyurethane leather (PU)
- Polyvinyl chloride leather (PVC)

Also called pleather, both of these types have a plastic base. So, what’s the difference?

Generally, PU leathers offer a better look and feel than PVC ones. They replicate genuine leather more accurately.

Also, PU leathers tend to be more flexible and easier to use. You can fold and cut them without encountering any rigidity.

However, in terms of durability, PVC leather outshines PU. It has several coatings below the surface that make it tougher and able to stand up to lots of use. This makes PVC leather ideal for things that will be used a lot, such as a seat cushion that people will be sitting on often.

Color & Texture

Once you’ve chosen the type, evaluate the faux leather fabric for its texture and color.

Certain faux leather fabrics offer a much better grain texture that is close to genuine leather. Meanwhile, some faux leather fabrics have an unnaturally smooth surface.

As for the color, you will come across a huge variety. From black to red, faux leather is available in all colors and shades. You will even find printed and patterned faux leather fabrics for your wildest craft ideas.

Size

Sizing holds immense importance in purchasing the idealistic faux leather fabric. Most online sellers provide faux leather in one-yard measurements. However, some sell smaller or larger pieces.

You must measure the required size beforehand. Consider your project, find required measurements, and purchase a size or two larger than that. It is always better to purchase more than the actual need when working with fabrics.

How do you maintain faux leather?

Faux leather may chip and crack when not maintained. Similar to any other fabric, you need to take care of faux leather to make it last longer.

Here is a basic faux leather care routine:

- Add some dish soap to warm water.
- Soak a non-abrasive cloth in the solution.
- Squeeze the damp cloth until there’s no dripping.
- Wipe the faux leather surface and then dry it with a microfiber towel.

This particular method is best for cleaning dirt and refreshing your faux leather’s look. Clean it once every week or so or whenever something spills on the fabric.

In case you find your faux leather fabric drying up, use a quality PVC moisturizer to restore its original condition. Apply a thin layer on the area and let it sink into the fabric.

Faux Leather Fabric FAQ

Q: Is faux leather waterproof?

A: No, faux leather is not fully waterproof. However, it has the least water permeability amongst all leather types. It won’t rot or crack when in contact with water. So, in case of accidents, you can easily clean it before any real damage occurs.

Q: What causes faux leather peeling?

A: Faux leather does chip or peel after some time. It is because the synthetic coating used for bonding in faux leather is quite fragile. The coating does not last long and loses its bonding capabilities over time. However, 100% synthetic faux leathers do not peel or chip.

Q: How many years does faux leather last?

A: Faux leathers aren’t as durable as genuine leathers. These last for approximately 4 to 6 years before chipping or peeling. However, proper maintenance can make it last longer.

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