Differences Between Leather and Leatherette Sofas

There are many differences between leather and leatherette sofas. One of the most obvious is the price. The second is material. Leather sofas are made from animal skin, while leatherette sofas are synthetic, made out of plastic. However, there are more than these two differences. Keep reading to find out!

Leather and leatherette sofas are both great furniture pieces. However, they differ in the material that is used and how it feels to sit on them.

The first thing you should know about leather and leatherette sofas is the difference in material. Leather sofas are made from animal skin, while leatherette sofas are synthetic, made out of plastic.

Leather comes from cowhide, but can also be made from horsehide or other hides such as goat, kangaroo, deer, pig, and sheepskin. The thickness ranges from 1 mm to 4 mm. It’s a natural fabric that has a distinct pattern and grain that comes with age and use.

On the other hand, leatherette is a synthetic fabric that feels like leather but isn’t derived from animals at all. It can feel more coarse than real leather because it doesn’t have any natural fibers to soften it up. But you can wash it just as easily as leather if needed.


One of the most obvious differences between leather and leatherette sofas is the material. Leather sofas are usually made from animal skin, while leatherette sofas are synthetic, made out of plastic.

Leather is more expensive because it’s made from animal skin. The process of tanning animal skins to turn them into leather can take up to six months, which means that it’s more difficult to find an affordable one.

Leatherette is considered a “synthetic” fabric because it’s made out of plastic. It lasts about half as long as real leather but is much cheaper, which makes it popular among many people who are looking for inexpensive furniture pieces.

Both leather and leatherette sofas have their advantages and disadvantages, but there are other things to consider before making your purchase decision. Keep reading!


Leatherette sofas are much less expensive than leather sofas. A high-quality leatherette sofa can cost as low as $300. In contrast, a high-quality leather sofa could cost over $4,000.

Naturally, a lower price means that leatherette sofas are more affordable for many homeowners, which is the primary reason they’re becoming more popular.

However, this doesn’t mean that there isn’t a market for leather sofas anymore! While the materials and manufacturing process of these two types of furniture might be different, high-quality leather sofas combine all the qualities people desire in a sofa: durability, comfort, and style.

In addition to being higher quality and having more features, leather sofas also have a longer lifespan. Leather will last from anywhere from 10 to 25 years with proper care and maintenance. Leatherette will only last from 3 to 8 years due to its less durable construction process.

This is why many people would rather spend more money on a leather sofa that’ll last them 15 years instead of 8 years for a cheaper leatherette one that’ll still need to be replaced after 10 years.


Leather has a natural look and feel; while leatherette can be more shiny and plastic-like.

The first difference between leather and leatherette sofas is their appearance. Leather sofas look natural and have a true leather appearance, while leatherette sofas can be more shiny and plastic-like.

The second difference between them is the material. Leather sofas are made from animal skin, while leatherette sofas are synthetic, made out of plastic.

Leather and leatherette sofas also differ in durability and longevity: Leather will last longer than leatherette because it’s more durable.

A third difference is maintenance: Leather requires some sort of treatment or conditioner to keep it moisturized; however, that’s not necessary with a leatherette sofa. Lastly, leather has a slight odor to it when new; but after time, the smell goes away.

Leather and leatherette sofas may both be great for your home, but they do differ in their appearance, material, maintenance requirements, and longevity. Which one would you rather buy?


Leather is more durable than leatherette because it’s made from animal skin; while leatherette can be scratched or damaged easily because it’s made from plastic.

If you have children or pets, leatherette is not a good choice. The material is more likely to scratch or tear than leather. If you have kids, they could be very hard on the couch and if you have pets, they might claw at it. This can lead to scratches that would not happen with leather.

Another reason why leather is better for families with kids is that it doesn’t release pet dander like leatherette can. Leather furniture has natural flecks in the skin which makes it easy for it to breathe and stay fresh longer than synthetics like leatherette.

Leather also lasts longer than other synthetic materials. It has an average lifespan of 20 years while leatherette lasts about 3-5 years before needing to be replaced.

There are many reasons why leather sofas are better than leatherette sofas when considering durability, but there are also some advantages that leatherette offers over leather!


Many people find leather sofas easier to clean; while leatherette should only be cleaned with a damp cloth and mild soap

Leatherette sofas are much easier to clean because they don’t have any animal skin to worry about. They can be cleaned with a damp cloth and mild soap.

However, leather sofas need more upkeep because those who own them should do things like vacuum the surface weekly and use a leather conditioner at least every six months.

Leather conditioners can help keep leather from drying out and cracking, as well as create a protective coating that will prevent it from discoloring.

Another difference between these two types of sofas is their durability. Leather sofas tend to last longer than leatherette sofas.

Between Leather and Leatherette, Which is Better?

First, let’s talk about the price. Leatherette sofas are much cheaper than leather sofas. For this reason, many people are drawn to leatherette because of its affordability of it. However, that doesn’t mean that leather is more expensive or better.

Leather is more durable and lasts longer than leatherette. Leather can withstand up to 60,000 pounds of pressure without breaking, while leatherette will break at only 10,000 pounds of pressure. That said, if you have kids or pets in your home or if you need a more durable couch for wear-and-tear purposes, leather is the way to go!

Another difference between these two types of sofas is material. Leather is made from animal skin and leatherette comes from plastic. If you’re vegan/vegetarian or just prefer nonanimal products, then this could be an important deciding factor for you.

Overall, there are many differences between leather and leatherette sofas—though they both have their pros and cons depending on your needs!


When it comes to choosing between leather and leatherette sofas, there are many factors to consider. Leather sofas are more expensive, but they are also more durable and easier to clean. Leatherette sofas are cheaper but easier to damage.

The best way to choose is to think about which aspects of the sofa are most important to you. For example, if you’re looking for a sofa that will last for years, you should go with leather. If you’re looking for an affordable sofa that is easy to clean, you should go with leatherette.

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