There are quite a couple of criteria to think about when choosing the right gaming chair. You not only have to select the style and features, but also the cover material needs to be considered. There are three options to decide between, chair covers made of Fabric, Synthetic Leather or Genuine Leather. Fabric upholstery is very common and always feels warm when sitting down, but genuine leather or imitation leather also does have points for them. So what are the special features of these materials and what are their advantages and disadvantages?
Chairs with fabric cover
Most common because very affordable and versatile are chairs with fabric cover. Fabrics used for upholstering chairs are often a mixed spun of natural fibers and synthetic fibers to combine the qualities of both.
There are many fibers that can be made into chair fabrics of artificial or natural origin. Natural material includes cotton, wool, linen. Synthetics used are polyester, polyacrylate, polyamide, polypropylene, viscose, etc.,
Roughly speaking, fabrics of natural origin are more supple, but less resistant, while synthetic fabrics last longer, but are sometimes less skin-friendly. Mixed spun fabrics bring together the best of both: the skin-friendly properties of natural fiber as well as the durability of the synthetic material.
Fabric covers are susceptible to attracting dust and dirt particles over time and not as easy to clean as artificial leather. Regularly use a vacuum cleaner and if necessary a furniture shampoo will keep them good looking. Fabric covers have a high degree of comfort to sit on because they always feel pleasantly tempered when sitting down.
Their breathability is another advantage over synthetic leather. When the skin touches the seat or backrest of a leather or imitation leather chair, the body begins to sweat quickly and sticks to the chair. Mesh fabric covers are a popular material used on backrests providing a great degree of breathability. Especially in summer one may appreciate not being stuck to the chair with a sweaty back.
Advantages of fabric covers/upholstery
- Textil fabrics are comparatively cheaper than other material
- Breathable and permeable to water vapor
- Skin-friendly and its texture are felt by many to be more comfortable than artificial leather.
- Feels always “warm” when sitting down
- It is easier to process and can be manufactured as a continuous material.
- Coatings usually easy to replace when worn out.
- Easy care
Synthetic leather is an imitation leather made of a composite of textile fabric and a plastic layer. The textile fabric may be a natural fiber like cotton, a synthetic fiber such as Polyester or a mix spun fabric. The coating of modern synthetic leather is usually Polyurethane (PU). Chemical manufacturing processes create a certain foamy scary structure, which lets the artificial leather surface look very much like real leather. Often only experts can tell the difference between synthetic leather or genuine leather.
Polyurethan artificial leathers are widely used in the furniture industry. It is easily available in many style qualities and chair manufacturers are not bound to the market availability as with real leather. Artificial leather is always available in the same quality and production is less expensive than leather. PU leather is robust, it is easy to care for, washable and dries without hardening.
Premium synthetic leather also makes a very noble and high-quality chair covers. However, one disadvantage is its breathability which cannot match that of fabric or genuine leather.
Synthetic leather advantages
- Synthetic leather is much cheaper than real leather
- Easier to manufacture and very durable
- Imitations leather is much less sensitive to stains
- Very easy and cheap to replace upholstery when necessary
- Not an animal product
Genuine leather is an animal product, namely, it is animal skin that has been tanned. In the furniture industry mostly cowhide is been used. Genuine leather is a tough, strong and very durable material.
Executive style chairs are often made of real leather. It gives the chairs a distinguished and noble look that represents luxury and style. There are many more advantages of genuine leather. Genuine leather is very durable, does not crack and is almost impervious to abrasion. The real leather gamer chairs are made to be extremely breathable. The material can absorb moisture without feeling wet and will allow the moisture to evaporate into the air.
Nevertheless, in summer when it is very hot one might uncomfortable being in contact with the chair and feel sweety. When exposed to strong sunlight a leather surface can also get very hot and make you jump the moment you sit down. In practice, those drawbacks are not often an issue as most offices or rooms are air-conditioned.
The only drawback that remains valid is the high price. This is the result of the complex production effort involving all the many manufacturing steps including sourcing of raw materials, tanning, drying, dying, etc.
Advantages of genuine leather
- Tough material, tear-resistant, robust and the abrasion-resistant
- Leather’s big advantage is its longevity. With good care, leather products last for decades
- The longevity sets off the initial higher cost in the long run
- Leather is breathable and permeable to water vapor
- The high breathability allows moisture to be transported away and to evaporate
- Besides, it is hardly inflammable.
- Skin-friendly, the texture is felt to be much more comfortable than artificial leather.
- Genuine leather is considered high-quality material
Conclusion: Fabric, Synthetic Leather or Genuine Leather covers
Of course, by the end of the day, you have to decide what’s in your budget and what kind of chair you prefer. Each chair cover/upholstery has its advantages and disadvantages. In any case, the genuine leather upholstery belongs to the highest quality but it is also the most expensive one and the longest lasting one and is mainly used in high-end executive chairs. There are lots of good gaming chairs on the market that come with quality PU synthetic leather or fabric cover.