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What is Vegan Leather?


Vegan leather is a new term derived from the development of the times. As the name suggests, it refers to animal-friendly leather. The raw materials of these leathers are 100% animal-free. This kind of leather can be called vegan leather.

why recyceld leather better than leather

In order to distinguish synthetic cruelty-free alternatives to genuine leather, “faux leather” and “vegan leather” are the most commonly used descriptions of brands.

Although animal leather products have always been popular, the production of every leather product represents the death of animals. As more and more people advocate the theme of animal-friendliness, many brands have begun to look for alternatives to genuine leather. In addition to Faux Leather (synthetic Leather/artificial leather), there is also the term Vegan Leather.

Vegan leather has become popular in recent years. Some people will ask what is the difference between Vegan Leather and Faux Leather?

Faux Leather is already a well-known vocabulary with meanings such as synthetic leather, PU leather, and artificial leather. Although faux leather is friendly to animals, it is not environmentally friendly. During the production process, a large amount of waste gas and wastewater will be generated, and a large amount of toxic and harmful chemicals such as DMF, formaldehyde, and toluene will be used. And Vegan Leather is a new term derived from the development of the times. It also means animal-friendly leather, but it does not mean that it is completely environmentally friendly or highly economical. Only animal-friendly and environmentally friendly vegan leather is a truly meaningful product.GRCN’s Waterborne polyurethane leather is the ecological vegan leather that meets these conditions.

Waterborne polyurethane Leather

= ECO Vegan Leather

Waterborne polyurethane synthetic Leather is a vegan leather that conforms to the sustainable development strategy.

Animal leather production not only requires the lives of millions of animals every year but also uses acids, heavy metals and large amounts of water for tanning, which affects the environment. The production of traditional synthetic leather substitutes may save the lives of animals, but it will cause pollution of synthetic polymers, plasticizers and solvents, causing serious pollution to the environment. The invention of waterborne polyurethane synthetic leather solved this problem.

The waterborne PU synthetic leather produced by the GRCN laboratory uses waterborne polyurethane as the raw material, which is made by replacing the toxic solvent DMF with water. The product is environmentally friendly and non-toxic, and the production process is pollution-free. It is the latest replacement product of traditional solvent-based synthetic leather and a product that conforms to the world’s sustainable development. It can meet various environmental protection standards promulgated by the European Union, the United States and other countries. It is usually called Waterborne PU leather, Water-based PU leather, or DMF-free PU leather, we can also describe this material as “ECO VEGAN”).

In addition to Ecological Vegan Leather-Waterborne polyurethane leather, what other leathers also belong to Vegan Leather?


Launched to the market in 2019 is the innovative plant-based alternative made from cactus leaves in Mexico

The fabric is made from nopal cactus leaves grown on the plantation of the two entrepreneurs who developed it in the state of Zacatecas, Mexico.

Some percentage of its composition is actually PU as the final coating – because it needs to be used to create the ‘leather’ look. There is as yet no bio-based resin to substitute for PU resin.   


VEGEA fabrics are produced in Italy. The word “leather” does not appear in its title or any of its text, because legislation passed in Italy in 2020 forbids the use of the word “leather” in any way to describe materials that are not derived from animal remains.

This fabric was developed through a process for the valorization of wine waste: grape marc, which consists of grape skins, stalks, and seeds discarded during the wine production process. It uses dried residues (barks, stems and seeds) as active ingredients and fillers for polymeric compounds. Like the cactus leaf material, VEGEA also needs to use PU coating to give the fabric a “leather look”.

In addition to the above two kinds of synthetic leather containing plant ingredients, there are also synthetic leather products containing plant ingredients made of pineapple leaves, mycelium, etc. They have similar principles, and ultimately need to use polyurethane resin as a coating to give the fabric a “leather”look.

Polyurethane resins include common solvent-based polyurethane resins and new waterborne polyurethane resins. Solvent-based polyurethane resin is made of toxic solvent DMF as raw material. The new Waterborne polyurethane is non-toxic and environmentally friendly and belongs to the latest technology-based material.

eco friendly leather_waterbased pu leather_dmf free

(According to REACH regulations, DMF is classified as a substance of very high concern (SVHC), and is classified as toxic to reproduction (according to Regulation (EC) No. 1272/2008, Reproductive Toxicity Cat) 1B).

GRCN promise all products are made of Waterborne polyurethane resin, which is non-toxic and harmless and can meet the highest environmental protection standards for synthetic leather. Provide the market with valuable “ECO VEGAN” synthetic leather.