What is the difference between PU leather and real leather?

If you are in the market for new leather product, you might have realized by now that you can no longer just approach the counter and ask for a real leather product.

There are a number of different kinds of leather for different purposes.

Even the labels of different products can be confusing.

If you’ve been doing some window shopping on Amazon or eBay, you might have encountered the terms PU and genuine leather. Last time you checked, there was only one kind of leather, so what gives?

In this article we will give answer of the question is PU leather real leather?


So what is PU Leather? What does PU material stand for?

Well, PU leather is simply artificial leather, know also as vegan leather.

It was created to look and feel like leather but without having to use real animal skin.

It is safe to say that when you see a wallet that says it’s made with PU leather, it’s not authentic leather.

There are a number of ways to make PU leather but the most common one is to use split leather and combine it with polyurethane then paste it on to a surface.

Although PU leather is different from genuine leather, there are still a number of similarities with the real thing.

After all, PU leather was created to fool your sense of sight and touch. That’s why a lot of people who aren’t connoisseurs can get confused in telling the two apart.


Difference Between PU Leather and Genuine Leather

The first red flag you should be wary of would be the price.

PU leather products are usually at the lower end of the price spectrum.

This is because PU leather is easily manufactured compared to genuine leather. While PU leather looks genuine enough at times on the surface, careful examination of the back side can make you see how the “leather” part is just glued on.

Lastly, check the surface of the item.
Genuine leather may not be 100% smooth because animal skin has natural grains and imperfections. PU leather, on the other hand, are smooth to the touch because they are manufactured that way.

You can also check the leather for pores as natural and genuine leather come from real animals so the pores will be present compared to PU leather.

Product of Demand

Leather products are a necessity for modern people. The leather products, and particularly leather wallets are an everyday item.

No longer leather wallet is it just a symbol for the rich and famous gentlemen of society but even the everyday jack needs one.

In the past, people who weren’t too particular with wallets did not care much about what it is made out of as long as it serves it purpose. As time passed, more and more people switched to wallets from coin purses and putting their money in their pockets. Due to this rising demand, wallet makers needed to find a way to create quality wallets in record time without making it cost a fortune.

The result are wallets that look like they are made out of leather but aren’t.

See, leather wallets are nice to look at but making them is not easy.

First, you have to skin an animal and then cure and cut the leather to specific sizes then lastly stitch them together to form a wallet. Just imagine how many cows, lambs, deer, fish, goats, and ostriches are killed just to make wallets for everybody. Plus, not everybody is particular with the make of their wallets so leather wallets still are a thing for the brand conscious.

For these reasons, PU leather was created…

Here is our infographic on: 5 ways to Distinguish PU leather and real leather


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❓ Is PU leather as good as real leather?

Nothing is as good as real leather. Although similar, PU leather and genuine leather have their differences in texture and price. PU leather is less course and rigid than natural leather because of how it is manufactured. This separates it from the real thing, and so while good, it is not as great as genuine leather.

🤔 Does PU leather peel?

The most common way PU leather is created is by using split leather and combining it with polyurethane, then pasting it onto a surface. Therefore, with time, PU leather will start to peel. Careful examination of the edges will show the glued parts that will begin to peel after some time of use.

🙋 What is the difference between PU leather and faux leather?

PU leather is a type of faux leather. The term ‘faux leather’ is used for any kind of artificial leather. PU leather is the most modern type of synthetic leather and has some animal materials mixed in them. Most faux leather products are actually PU leather, especially if they are smooth with a silky finish.

🧐 Is PU leather safe?

PU leather, though a type of faux leather, has been found to contain animal material like real leather. However, it will not perform as well as regular leather because, again, it is pasted on to the surface. It is safe than PVC, however, but also, it is not nearly as durable as real leather.

✅ How can you tell if it’s real leather or PU leather?

There are two main effective ways to check for PU leather by sight and touch. First, the labels should tell you whether it is real or artificial, so should the manufacturing country. Second, check the edges and the surface. PU leather is very smooth and looks like it has layers on the edges.