15 alternatives to animal leather

vegan alternatives to leather

There are many people looking for alternatives to animal leather specially in fashion. There are still people who are unaware of the existence of vegetable skins, and they think that the only alternative to leather is fake leather.

Even in many places they usually call the PVC “eco skin”, which is completely wrong and misleading because it has nothing to do with ‘eco’.

Nor should we confuse vegetable skins with animal tanned leather. Since it’s still animal skin, it only has been tanned with vegetable products so that the process itself is somewhat less polluting than the traditional one.

Luckily, every day there are more advances and innovations in the sustainable fashion sector. And today I bring you some of the most innovative vegan materials that many brands already use instead for animal skin, especially in the fashion sector.

Mushroom leather

Also called Mushkin. It is a biodegradable vegetable skin, free of chemicals and recently created in Italy from mushrooms. The fabric is flexible, soft, waterproof and resistant.

Pineapple leather

The pineapple fabric is a revolutionary product of recent creation, which is increasingly positioned as an alternative to animal skin. It’s composed of discarded pineapple leaf fibers and the result is a soft, resistant and very flexible fabric.

Currently it is already being used for clothing, shoes, upholstery and accessories.

Paper fabric

Paper fabric or kraftex may seem fragile but the truth is that it supports up to 10 kilos of weight and is water resistant. Thanks to its manufacturing process, it is as flexible as the fabric and as resistant as leather.

It’s currently used to create all kinds of accessories and even bindings for books and folders.

Waxed cotton

The waxed cotton canvas is a very robust material with great properties. It’s breathable, waterproof and washable.

It has been used for a long time to manufacture high quality jackets and other clothes. In order to consider it vegan, it has to be made with 100% cotton and soybean oil.

Teak leaves

With a special texture, it’s a very light, resistant and antibacterial material. It’s obtained mainly from the leaf of the teak tree, and there are several companies that are already using it to manufacture their products.

Apple fibers

From the apple you can also extract a high quality vegan leather. This revolutionary material is flexible and breathable.

It’s already used for shoes, bags and even haute couture.

Grape vegetable leather

It’s also called Wineleather. Of Italian origin, it is obtained by chemical processes from the waste of wine making. It’s a very resistant, soft and versatile product that is used in fashion, automotive and furniture manufacturing.

Tea vegetable leather

It’s a 100% biodegradable fabric obtained from kombucha tea through a completely natural fermentation process.

The result is a material similar to the skin but more fragile and not resistant to water unfortunately. But it can have different applications such as sustainable packaging for example.

Corn leather

It’s a tissue obtained from the fibers of the corn cob. As a result you get a very soft and light vegan skin. It’s used for shoes as well as for other types of accessories.

Cereal leather

Fabric can also be made from various non-eatable cereals. In Italy it’s already used to manufacture shoes and other accessories.

Textile hemp

Resistant and ecological, hemp is used since ancient times. Its production process is much more sustainable than cotton production process. And currently it’s used for making clothes, home goods, bags and backpacks.

Coconut skin

Also called bonote. It’s obtained from the fibers of the coconut shell for its resistance and biodegradable and breathable properties.

People started using it to make fishing nets, and nowadays it’s already used as vegan leather to make shoes or upholstery.

White nettle leather

The fabric obtained from the white or green nettle is a material similar to linen, with a soft and very pleasant touch. It’s traditional from China and Japan, although it also begins to be used worldwide.

Soy leather

Also called bio leather, it’s obtained from soy beans. It has been created in an Indonesian laboratory, XXLAB, and its production process is similar to the elaboration of tofu. In fact, waste from the production of tofu is used to create this fabric.

Cork leather

The cork, as you probably know, is our favorite material and of course I could not miss this list.

It’s a material that can be used for almost everything, as you can see in our online store. For us it’s important to use it, not only for its great properties, but also as a sustainable local resource.

Spain is one of the largest producers of cork worldwide. And, although today it is taken for granted, it has always been part of our culture.

For all this we consider cork as the best current alternative to animal skin.

alternatives to animal leather - cork fashion

What do you think of all these alternatives to animal leather? Do you know more sustainable materials that can be used instead of animal skin? I will love that you tell me in the comments. Of course, I also invite you to share this post if it has been useful for you.

Vegan cork belt natural

40.19$

Cork simple wallet

33.30$
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