Be A Hero And Buy Faux Leather

Hayden-Panettiere-pleather

hayden panettiere wearing faux leatherWhy would a celebrity who can afford the finest clothing available wear imitation leather? Anyone who is a fan of the hit NBC show “Heros” knows the name Hayden Panettiere. But did you know when Hayden isn’t saving her own skin on the show, using her amazing powers to self heal, that she might be saving the skin of a marine animal?

Panettiere is well known for being an animal rights activist and is a spokesperson for the Save The Whales Again Campaign. In late 2007, she joined a peaceful demonstration in Taiji, Japan, to stop Japanese fishermen who were brutally butchering dolphins in the now notorious dolphin killing cove. She and five other surfers actually became the target of the angry fishermen who turned on the protesters, who were paddling in the water on surfboards. It was all caught on tape and was featured in the documentary “The Cove”, which won an Oscar in 2009.

So it was no surprise to see Hayden Panettiere in this black faux leather jacket from Express, a company who gets that animal friendly faux leather is super cool.

What exactly is faux leather? Maybe a nicer way of saying fake leather, a term with other aliases, such as pleather. The term pleather comes from combining plastic and leather. Imitation leather has several advantages over real leather, the first being that it is not made from the hide of an animal. Many people other than vegetarians and animal rights activists do not feel right about causing the death of an animal to harvest its skin. Fake leather is considerably less expensive than real leather and is also lighter and easier to clean and care for.

How is faux leather, made? Pleather was originally made from PVC, (polyvinyl chloride) which made the fabric very shiny, stiff and un-breathable. It can now be made from polyurethane, which allows air to pass through more easily. Many designers who make clothes out of imitation leather use a fabric called matte vinyl. Matte Vinyl is a shiny, stretchy fabric that comes in a variety of colors and closely resembles genuine leather. You can buy matte vinyl from fabric stores that carry it and it usually sells for about $7.00-$10.00 per yard.

If you’re wondering what type of products are commonly made using faux leather, the list would include pretty much everything you could imagine that can be made from real leather. Imitation leather clothing includes faux leather jackets, vests, skirts, pants, chaps, belts, boots, shoes and hats. Office chairs, sofas, loveseats, dining chairs, recliners and ottomans are all examples of furniture that can be upholstered with imitation leather. Other products that are often made or covered with fake leather include computer laptop cases, brief cases, CD cases, cell phone cases, luggage, wallets, handbags and purses.

Caring for faux leather is very easy and often adds to the appeal of choosing it over the real deal. If you have furniture or car upholstery made from imitation leather and it needs cleaning, simply use warm, soapy water and a rag. Gently scrub small areas until clean, then use a dry rag to wipe away the excess moisture. Faux leather cleaning products can also be used to restore items to their original shine. Washing fake leather is much easier than trying to clean clothing made from real leather. Most faux leather clothing can be hand washed using a mild detergent and some can be machine washed using cold water on the gentle cycle. Do not use bleach and do not iron imitation leather.

So the next time you see your favorite celebrity wearing a cool leather jacket or maybe some awesome leather pants, look a little closer. Can you tell if it’s the real deal or if its faux fabulous?

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