The Faux-lema

In recent years Faux leather has gained popularity as a  supposedly eco-friendly alternative to real leather. However, when it comes to assessing the environmental impact, faux leather falls short of being the sustainable choice.

Unfortunately one of the main reasons why faux leather is not better for the environment than real leather is the materials used in its production. Faux leather is typically made from petroleum-based products such as PVC (polyvinyl chloride) or polyurethane. AKA plastics my dear, and not like in the mean girl type either. The manufacturing process of these materials involves the use of toxic chemicals and releases harmful pollutants into the air and water. Furthermore, the production of faux leather requires a significant amount of energy and water. The extraction and refining of petroleum, as well as the manufacturing process, contribute to greenhouse gas emissions and depletion of natural resources. Like ewww, hello, mother nature called, she wants her resources back!

In contrast, real leather is a byproduct of the meat industry. The use of animal hides for leather production prevents a material that would otherwise be discarded to use.  Additionally, leather can be a long-lasting and durable material, reducing the need for frequent replacement and ultimately reducing waste. A testament are those century old troll carts that still operate up and down San Francisco, because if you were ever to need to stand, you’ll look up and find leather straps that could use some conditioning, if we’re being honest, but whom are nothing more than a functional testament to the durability of leather to last over a hundred years with the use day in and day out, by millions of hands on any given year tugging at them for dear life against the diabolical hills of San Francisco.

While it is true that the leather industry has its own environmental challenges, such as the use of chemicals in tanning, efforts are being made to improve sustainability and reduce the impact. Many leather manufacturers are adopting more eco-friendly practices, such as using vegetable-based tanning agents and implementing water and energy-saving measures.

At the end of the day the choice between faux leather and real leather should be made based on a variety of factors, including personal preferences, ethical considerations, and the desire to minimize environmental impact. It is important to note that neither option is entirely without its environmental challenges, but it is clear that faux leather is not the eco-friendly alternative it is often marketed to be. In fact, most of the fashion industry as well as the agricultural field could use some reformation on the persuasive language used to advertise false claims or green wash to the consumer when they’re just trying to do their part to keep  this planet alive and well. Girl, all I’m saying is as a once finance girly, the girl math says that these stores are wildin out charging sometimes the same price for real leather for something that will start peeling in your closet within the next few years, so before you take an L in order to fit in with everyone else, remember that you’re the original. You are the artisan bag that took  weeks to make, every stitch created by hand to pull together a piece of art, while the rest are just one faux leather purse trying to imitate anything original. Carry on my queens.


Much love,