What is bonded leather?

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Bonded leather refers to a type of leather that is made be reconstituting scrap leather pieces and mixing them with bonding agents and materials. Similar to paper production, making bond leather involves using pulp from shredded pieces of scrap leather. This pulp will then be mixed with other bonding agents and put into layers or paper backers and then sealed with a polyurethane coating. The resulting sheet of reconstituted leather will then be embossed or processed to have a texture similar to natural leather. Bonded leather is also referred to as reconstituted leather because of the process involved in making it. This type of leather may contain 100% leather pulp and is technically different with synthetic leather.

Bonded leather is commonly used for various products including furniture, bags, belts, and even books. The best thing about this product is that it basically helps the environment in the sense that it uses scrap and leftover leather.  Instead of having these items thrown away or rendered useless, these scrap pieces are turned into pulp and reconstituted to become another form of leather which is bonded leather. With this type of leather processed, consistency of the product is expected making it very cost-efficient. It can also be made very durable and even flame-retardant depending on the processing involved. Many manufacturers also like bonded leather because of the infinite possibilities in terms of design and color.

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The basic problem with bonded leather is that it can be made with less than 100% leather scraps and pieces. Some manufacturers only use 20% leather scraps with other materials synthetic. This gap in terms of bonded leather components makes inconsistencies in terms of the product’s quality. Some types of bonded leather with more synthetic components are not expected to last as long as those processed with more leather scrap components. There are also some issues regarding the plastic coatings of bonded leather which are not present when natural leather is used.

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