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Article: What is Vegan Leather? The Cruelty-Free Leather Option

A collection of quilted vegan leather pouches in red, black, mauve, and blush.

What is Vegan Leather? The Cruelty-Free Leather Option

A collection of quilted vegan leather pouches in red, black, mauve, and blush.
Tina Thelen, Photographer for NOTIQ​​

You’ve probably heard the term before- vegan leather. Often regarded as “eco-friendly” and “cruelty-free,” the term has been made popular recently by brands like Stella McCartney, H&M, and Zara. Since the early 2000s, vegan leather has shown to be one of the most prevalent trends in the fashion industry and is widely acclaimed as the modern solution to leather tanning. 


So what exactly is vegan leather, and is it truly a more sustainable option?


Traditionally, fashion accessories like handbags, shoes, and belts have been created through the production of animal hide leather. Although durable and biodegradable, animal leather is created through a harmful production process that damages the environment. From the bulk emission of greenhouse gases to the unsustainable raising of cattle and exotics, leather tanning can no longer be regarded as a safe and ethical practice for both humans and the planet.

Since the early 20th century, modern technology has given us the ability to produce more cost and energy-efficient alternatives. These new types of synthetic leather can now be used as a replacement for many of your everyday essentials like clothing, furniture, and even the interior of your car. 


The term “vegan leather” itself first appeared around 2010 with the emergence of all new “animal-free” clothing lines from celebrity designers like Stella McCartney. With the growing awareness of the impact of environmental hazards, brands now more than ever are searching for a more sustainable way of producing and selling clothing, giving consumers the option to choose better.

A collection of blush croco vegan leather planners and laptop case.
Tina Thelen, Photographer for NOTIQ​​

What Is Vegan Leather Made Of?


Vegan leather is any animal alternative that visually and structurally appears like natural leather but can be created synthetically through various human-made or plant-based materials.

Vegan leather is commonly comprised of either polyurethane (PU) or polyvinyl chloride (PVC) but has, in recent years, been produced from plant-based resources like cactus, bananas, and grapes. Although the creation of vegan leather isn’t perfect, it still provides a much more sustainable option than animal leather. 

Where Can I Shop For Vegan Leather?


Vegan leather products can be found almost everywhere now. Even prestigious designer brands like Hermes and Chanel have ventured into new territory by experimenting with these sustainable alternatives. More and more companies are seeing the benefits of vegan leather, giving you a great opportunity to make easy switches in your everyday products.


NOTIQ brand, a leading figure in the fashion + personal organization industry, offers high-quality vegan leather agendas and office supplies. The structure and visual quality of the materials are so close to the real thing that many often mistake their products for actual leather.

Vegan leather black lizard luxury lunch bags and reusable water bottle.
Tina Thelen, Photographer for NOTIQ​​

The Future of Vegan Leather


According to Infinium Global Research, the vegan leather market will be worth around $89.6 billion by 2025, paving the way for a new generation of sustainable brands. As newer technology emerges, the production of synthetic leather will continue to improve and ultimately grow to be more sustainable than ever before. 

So if you are looking for a cruelty-free, sustainable leather option, consider making the switch to vegan leather and invest in the future of sustainability.

Shop Vegan Leather Essentials From NOTIQ

About NOTIQ

NOTIQ {no-teek} is enriching lives and preserving our planet with sustainable Personal Organization goods and education to help women grow in time, money and life management.


Experience the brand now at notiq.com and track our environmental impact here.

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