What is the Difference Between Vegan Leather and Pleather

The main difference between vegan leather and pleather is that vegan leather is a fake leather material that does not contain animal skin while pleather is artificial leather made of plastic.

Both vegan leather and pleather are substitutes for real leather. Pleather is a type of vegan leather. Both of these products are considered to be more environmentally friendly options than real leather. 

Key Areas Covered

1. What is Vegan Leather 
     – Definition, Features
2. What is Pleather
     – Definition, Features
3. Relationship Between Vegan Leather and Pleather
     – Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between Vegan Leather and Pleather
     – Comparison of Key Differences

Key Terms

Faux Leather, Fake Leather, Leather, Pleather, Vegan LeatherDifference Between Vegan Leather and Pleather - Comparison Summary

What is Vegan Leather

Vegan leather is a fake leather material that does not contain animal skin. Vegan leather is also known as faux leather or fake leather. We can use a range of materials to make vegan leather; these include natural materials like cork and synthetic materials like plastic. Vegan leather is made with different chemicals and completely different industrial process than real leather. Moreover, they come in different qualities and standards – some vegan leather materials are more ‘leather-like’ than others.

People increasingly prefer vegan leather over real leather due to its real leather’s adverse impact on animals and the environment. Although the term vegan indicates that it is an environmentally friendly product, this is not always true. It is true that production of vegan leather poses no danger to animals, but it does affect the environment adversely as vegan leather mainly involve synthetic materials.

Main Difference - Vegan Leather vs Pleather

Quality and durability are other important factors to consider when comparing real leather and vegan leather. Vegan leather tends to be thinner and more lightweight than real leather; therefore, it is also less durable than real leather. A product made of real leather may last for decades if you use it carefully, but this not possible with vegan leather. In addition, vegan leather does not form a patina like real leather when ageing. It is also much less breathable than real leather.

What is Pleather

Pleather is basically plastic leather. Moreover, pleather is the most common way to make faux plastic as it simply involves binding a plastic coating to a fabric backing. Pleather is made of either polyurethane (PU) or polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Both PU and PVC are plastics. Neither of them is completely environmentally friendly material. However, PVC is considered to be worse than PU as it releases potentially toxic dioxins when they burn. PU is slightly less damaging and more modern plastic; experts are working on technically developing it to reduce its flaws.

Difference Between Vegan Leather and Pleather

Pleather is often inexpensive than leather. It is also lighter than real leather.  Pleather often has a very strange small due to its chemical composition. Some people describe it as a fishy smell; it is very hard to get rid of this smell without not ruining the material. In addition, pleather does not decompose as quickly as leather.

Relationship Between Vegan Leather and Pleather

  • Both vegan leather and pleather are substitutes for real leather.
  • Pleather is a type of vegan leather.
  • They are thinner and lighter than real weather.
  • Although their production does not harm animals, they affect the environment adversely.
  • Moreover, both of these do not decompose as quickly as leather.

Difference Between Vegan Leather and Pleather

Definition

Vegan leather is a fake leather material that does not contain animal skin while pleather is artificial leather made of plastic.

Materials

We can use a range of materials to make vegan leather; these include natural materials like cork and synthetic materials like plastic. However, pleather is made of plastics: polyurethane (PU) or polyvinyl chloride (PVC).

Conclusion

Pleather is basically a type of vegan leather.  The main difference between vegan leather and pleather is that vegan leather is a fake leather material that does not contain animal skin while pleather is artificial leather made of plastic.

Reference:

1. “All You Need To Know About Vegan Leather.” MAHI Leather, Available here.
2. “What’s Pleather?” OEcotextiles, 16 July 2014, Available here.

Image Courtesy:

1. “Vegan Purse and Wallet” By Kari Sullivan from Austin, TX – Vegan Purse and Wallet (CC BY 2.0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Pleather Factory (33098214556)” By jennybento from Jackson Heights, usa – Pleather Factory (CC BY-SA 2.0) via Commons Wikimedia

About the Author: Hasa

Hasa has a BA degree in English, French and Translation studies. She is currently reading for a Masters degree in English. Her areas of interests include literature, language, linguistics and also food.

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