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Leather vs. Fabric Recliner - What is the Best Material for You?

Jul 17, 2023
Leather vs. Fabric Recliner - What is the Best Material for You?

recliner is an excellent addition to many rooms, marrying comfort and style in one indispensable piece. However, when picking out a recliner the upholstery options may seem overwhelming. A great place to start narrowing down your selections is by deciding what type of upholstery will work best for your lifestyle. When choosing between fabric and leather upholstery it's helpful to consider the pros and cons of each. Let's walk through some of the characteristics of leather versus fabric recliners to see which might fit your home and lifestyle the best.


While both leather and fabric recliners are made in a variety of styles, from traditional to rustic, each upholstery type has its own feel. Even in more casual looks, leather has a luxurious feel. If the rest of your home design leans toward informal, you'll want to choose a more distressed, simple leather to achieve harmony between the styles.

Fabric upholstery is a bit more down-to-earth, even in traditional styles. To keep a more formal look in fabric, lean toward classic and tailored looks. You don't have to match all your upholstered furniture, and both leather and fabric pieces can work together beautifully. Just be sure to take into account the ambiance of your home, so you can choose a recliner that will fit in seamlessly with your décor. 


All of our recliners are made with comfort and durability in mind, with sturdy construction, a smooth reclining mechanism, and soft yet supportive cushions. When choosing between leather and fabric you must consider the feel of the upholstery. Leather has a cooler surface, while fabric is softer to the touch and more breathable. Our leather is buttery soft top grain, so it doesn't feel stiff like some lower-quality leather upholstery. Ultimately, this is a matter of personal preference, but some people find the warm feel of fabric more comfortable in casual, curl-up-by-the-fire settings. 

Care and Maintenance

High-quality fabric upholstery is available in sturdy and stain-resistant options. With the right fabric type, this look will last a long time, and it can be kept fresh with proper maintenance, care, and occasional professional cleanings.

However, for long, rugged wear you simply can't beat leather. It resists punctures from things such as pets and kids and spills can easily be wiped off. Proper care for leather upholstery only requires regular dusting and occasionally wiping it down with leather conditioner to keep it clean. For recliners that are going to see more mess, leather upholstery is a more durable option and will stand up to daily wear better.


Some people have to be extra careful to keep allergens such as pet dander and dust out of their homes. Fabric recliner chairs can be vacuumed to remove allergens, but the smooth surface of leather makes it easy to clean and wipe them away. The texture of fabric makes it more challenging to fully remove these irritants, but leather gives them no place to hide. For people with serious allergies that ease of cleaning can make a leather recliner the perfect option. 


When comparing the price between leather versus fabric upholstery, you'll see that fabric is almost always more affordable than leather recliners. You can find cheaper leather recliners, but they are often made of lower-quality, faux, or bonded leather. None of these will stand up to wear. Our top-grain leather is different and will stand the test of time. Fabric upholstery cannot stand up to wear quite as well as leather, although some fabric choices are sturdier than others. Your upholstery choice will have to take into account your budget, the kind of wear your recliner will see, and personal preference. 

Take a look at the many recliner styles we have to offer. Whether you prefer fabric or leather upholstery, we have the perfect chair for you. We stand behind our craftsmanship with a 30-day satisfaction guarantee, so you have nothing to lose.


Shop Our Best Selling Leather and Fabric Recliners 


Arthur Chesterfield Leather Tufted Wingback Recliner Chair

Arthur Chesterfield Leather Tufted Wingback Recliner Chair

Peter Mid-Century Modern Leather Recliner

Peter Mid-Century Modern Leather Recliner

Perry Leather Pillow Back Recliner

Perry Leather Pillow Back Recliner

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