Vegan leathers today are made from a whole host of wonderful plant-based ingredients - including corn, pineapple leaves, apples, cactus, mango and grapes. These materials robust and durable, meeting international standards for heavy duty use.
Imitation leathers have shaken off their shabby pleather reputation: gone are the days of cracking and disintegrating, which indicates the presence of PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) in the material – a highly toxic chemical. Any self-respecting eco vegan leather will be staunchly PVC-free, but cheaper vegan leathers may well still contain PVC. If your vegan bag costs less than say, £50: be suspicious.
Below we will dive into care tips for the most prevalent bio-based vegan leathers, but first we’ll start with some universal tips that will help your vegan leather item last a lifetime, no matter which “leather” it’s made from.
General advice to keep your vegan leather item in top condition:
- Do not over fill your item as this may permanently distort its shape.
- Avoid exposure to grease, perfumes, cosmetics, heat and strong sources of light. Sunshine does not discriminate: it ages skin and products alike.
- For bags delivered with a dust bag: store the item inside this protective dust bag when not in use. Do not store in a plastic bag.
- Avoid storing your item anywhere too warm, too humid or unventilated.
- Like any material, we recommend spills or stains be attended to and cleaned as soon as possible. Warm soapy water + gentle rubbing can often do the trick.
- We all know that prevention is better than cure, so take care of your items and avoiding rough surfaces.
Now let’s dive into specific care tips by material type. If you are unsure what material your product is made from, it is often listed in the "Product Details" section on the website, otherwise contact the company for advice.
This product is highly organic and requires care.
- To clean a cactus leather item, rub over gently using a damp white cotton cloth and mild soapy water. Light colours will require more frequent cleaning.
- Stains should be cleaned immediately with liquid soap or shampoo.
- Do not clean with solvents such as alcohol, acetone, paint thinner, bleach, oils, vinegar, waxes, silicones, stove (continental soda) or detergent cleaners as these cause permanent damage to the material.
- Click here for the full list of care instructions.
Piñatex a.k.a “pineapple leather”
Crafted from pineapple leaves, Piñatex is an innovative and highly sustainable material that is both water resistant and strong.
To maintain a Piñatex item, we recommend moisturising it regularly with a natural wax, such as Barbour Wax. After application, leave it in a warm place for 24 hours and then rub gently with a soft cloth. Marks can be cleaned with water, using a damp soft cloth or sponge.
See the Piñatex FAQ page for further care instructions.
Made in Italy from apple waste: a by-product of the fruit juice industry. Clean your AppleSkin products with a damp cloth or slightly soapy water. Do not use chemicals as these will degrade the material.
SiLeather (silicone-based material)
Thanks to proprietary technology, SiLeather is inherently stain and water resistant. There is no need for waxing or cleaning solutions, nor additional sun-blocking agents. For common stains in daily life, water or water with detergent is sufficient to remove it all. Here we also recommend some helpful tips for typical stains:
- Loose dirt, dust, and: Clean with a soft sponge or cloth using water
- Stubborn stains: such as Ketchup, Grape Juice, Orange Juice, Red Wine, Coffee, Mustard: Simply clean with a soft sponge or cloth using water
- Sunscreen, Mascara, Soy Sauce, Ballpoint Pen Ink, Permanent Marker: Mix 30 g detergent with 1 kg water. Use a soft sponge or cloth using the mixture solution.
- Lipstick, Iodine, Denim Dye: Clean with a soft sponge or cloth using 95% ethyl alcohol or 90% Isopropyl alcohol
Further information can be found on SiLeather's website.
e-Ultra (corn leather)
Made in Italy, “corn leather” is made from polyurethane derived partly from corn. The manufacturer recommends using water and soap with a gentle rubbing action to clean stains.
Hand-painted personalised items
Hand painted personalised items, such as LUXTRA’s, are created with high quality leather paints and sealed with a protective top coating for longevity. The paintwork is robust and long lasting but we do always advise that more care is taken with these items as sharp objects or rough surfaces risk damaging the artwork.