Difference Between Leather and Polyurethane

Main difference

Leather is one of the most famous expensive raw materials that is made up of tanned animal skin. Cattle hide is often involved in the majority of leather production. Various household and other products are made from leather, such as shoes, jackets, gloves, clothes, belts, etc. Original leather is very expensive in nature and naturally breaks down over time. On the other hand, polyurethane is a kind of synthetic leather, synthetic leather or we can simply say that artificial leather is an organic polymer in nature and is made up of the combination of thermosetting polymers together with carbamate bonds. Polyurethane is used more resistant for sofa covers, shoes and other products that replace leather, since it is more prone to decomposition and easy to wash.

Comparison chart

Leather Polyurethane
About Leather is a world-famous raw material that is made from tan-colored animal skin. Polyurethane is a kind of artificial leather, synthetic leather which is organic polymer by nature.
Composed of Tan animal skin. It is usually cowhide. Polyurethane is made up of linked organic carbamate units. It is a thermosetting polymer by nature. But it can be a combination of thermosets and thermoplastics.
cost Leather is very expensive by nature and leather products are quite expensive compared to other artificial leather products. Polyurethane is cheaper than leather and its products cost even a third of the original price of the leather product.
Washable Most of the time No, but there is exclusion. Yes
Breathable Yes No
animal friendly No, leather is made from animal skin. Yes, no animals are harmed in the production of polyurethane.
Durability Leather and leather products are more durable than all other synthetic leather products. They easily last 15-20 years. Much depends on its care and maintenance. Polyurethane products, on the other hand, are also very durable. But not as high quality as original leather products. They may occasionally crack or become damaged.
Biodegradable Leather, being made from animal skin, poses a greater threat of decomposition or biodegradability. Leather products generally last 50 years. On the other hand, polyurethane is very stiff against this biodegradable stuff and can last up to 500 years or even longer.
Maintenance Leather and leather products require high-level care and extreme maintenance to prevent aging. Polyurethane and polyurethane products are quite easy to maintain compared to leather. They wipe down and wipe down easily.
Available colours Leather is found in very few specific colors unlike polyurethane; these are brown, black, and sometimes white as well. Polyurethane is easily dyed, so it is available in various colors, including common leather colors and many others as well.

What is leather?

Leather is the most famous type of raw material in the world developed from tanned animal skin. Cattle skin is most often used for leather production. Other animal leathers are also involved, depending on the type of product. Various products such as shoes, jackets, clothes, belts, etc. they are made of leather. Leather and leather products are quite expensive compared to other raw materials developing similar products. Leather products are very durable in nature and last 15-20 years if well maintained. Leather, as it is composed of animal skin, poses a strong biodegradability threat. It usually decomposes in 50 to 60 years. The leather loses its color. It is usually found in brown, black, and sometimes white. It requires a lot of care.

What is polyurethane?

Polyurethane is a famous type of artificial leather or synthetic leather that is used in spite of leather to make similar products. Polyurethane differs from other types of artificial leather in that it is more dedicated to the production of upholstery material for sofas and other products. A polyurethane, as its name implies, is an organic polymer by nature that is formed by the combination of carbamate bonds. Polyurethane is cheaper than the original leather and no animals are harmed during its production as it does not require animal skin for its production. Polyurethane is quite durable in nature. It is found in a variety of different colors, unlike leather. It is very easy to maintain and requires less maintenance than leather.

Leather versus polyurethane

  • Leather is a raw material made up of tan-colored animal skins.
  • Polyurethane is a kind of artificial leather which is an organic polymer in nature.
  • Polyurethane is less biodegradable than leather.
  • Leather and its products are quite expensive.
  • Polyurethane products are cheaper compared to leather.
  • Leather is only found in a few colors like brown, black, and white.
  • Polyurethane and its products are found in a variety of different colors.

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