Have you recently purchased a gorgeous vegan leather handbag? First off, congratulations! You’ve made an ethical buying choice, without sacrificing your amazing style.
Faux leather, which is usually made with polyurethane (PU leather) is a great vegan clothing option, because it’s a man-made product that doesn’t require the senseless slaughter of animals. It gives you the same look as traditional leather, while being often cheaper than real leather and totally cruelty-free.
If you’ve never owned a PU leather handbag before, it’s important to know how to take care of your bag, so you can keep it looking and feeling like new for years to come.
Because PU leather is made to mimic animal-based leathers, the care instructions are similar on many points, but a lot simpler. To keep your bag in the best condition possible, you’ll want to follow the instructions below on how to care for your vegan leather bags.
KEEPING YOUR FAUX LEATHER HANDBAG CLEAN
On the Inside
Women carry just about everything in their handbags, from money and receipts, to makeup, to snacks that keep powerful ladies full on the go.
But that also means that your beautiful handbag is at risk from the items you take with you. The first step in cleaning a faux leather handbag is doing everything you can to prevent stains. Here are a few tips to help protect your bag, no matter what you’re bringing along for the ride:
HOW TO CLEAN A PU LEATHER HANDBAG
Sometimes a stain is unavoidable. Maybe you spilled a bit of your drink, or maybe you accidentally dropped your bag, and now there is a stain on the PU leather.
Don’t freak out! PU leather (vegan leather in general) is actually very simple to clean, as long as you do it the right way.
Just follow these steps, and your bag will look as good as new.
NOTE: Some PU leather products claim they are machine washable. We do not recommend EVER putting a synthetic leather handbag in the washing machine. Hot water using in the washing cycle can be detrimental to the bag, and handles, straps and hardware can become caught or damaged during agitation. Using a dryer on faux leather can lead to cracked, unsalvageable items. Skip the washer and spend the extra few moments cleaning your vegan bag by hand!
Give your handbag a mild clean from time to time. This will ensure you stay on top of general marks and grease that build up with regular use.
Again, the rule here is to keep it simple: Use a non-abrasive cloth (microfibre is great) and a warm water + mild washing liquid mixture to give your bag a good surface wipe.
Follow up by drying it off with a soft, clean cloth.
HOW TO STOP YOUR FAUX LEATHER FROM CRACKING
Real leather products are made from animal hides, and when they are exposed to too much sunlight, these can crack, ruining the look of your handbag. Since PU leather mimics animal-based leathers, it is also prone to cracking without proper care.
Cracking of faux leather is primarily due to the effect of UVB rays on the molecular structure of the material, resulting in PU (or vinyl) compounds becoming brittle enough to crack. To keep your PU leather handbag free of cracks, you’ll need to minimise exposure to sunlight.
Leaving your handbag inside your car in the sun, for example, is a huge no-no.
Additionally, many leather producers offer 'leather conditioner' products. These conditioners are generally safe for PU leather as well, and although we don't consider it necessary, you can give these conditioners (or baby oil) a go if you want to add a protective layer to your handbag. But be careful: don't overdue it - a little product goes a long way. You don't want to end up with a shiny / greasy bag.
STORING YOUR FAUX LEATHER PURSE
In addition to keeping your PU leather handbags clean and protected from the sun, proper storage is essential to making your purse last as long as possible.
Here are our Dos and Don'ts for properly storing faux leather purses and bags:
MAKE IT LAST - GO LIGHT
Vegan leather bags can last a long time if you look after them properly.
Common sense still applies when it comes to your handbag, so to give your beautiful faux leather bag longevity, we recommend giving it a little break every now and then – rotate your handbags instead of using the same one every day.
Be mindful of the weight you carry - as putting a handbag under constant weigh pressure can lead to damage. For example, avoid overloading your bag with heavier items (such as a laptop) on a daily basis.
“You get what you pay for” - The old maxim applies to vegan bags too.
A higher price tag means that your faux leather bag was made by better artisans, using better materials, resulting in better and stronger finishes and higher durability. High end handbags are also subject to strict quality control tests, which is not always the case with the cheaper brands.
Remember, fast (and cheap) fashion is designed to be essentially disposable. So pay attention to the brands you purchase from: how often are they releasing - and discarding - designs? What are their prices? How often are they running clearance and sale events?
Be extra careful with cheap handbags.
ENJOY YOUR FAUX LEATHER PURSE!
By now, you’ve learned everything you need to know about keeping your faux leather purse in perfect condition. We discussed:
Again, thank you for making the right choice to buy cruelty-free fashion items!
Looking for more perfect faux leather pieces for your collection? Check out all the stunning purses and handbags in our gallery.
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