Obviously, PU leather is not the real thing, so you won't spend as much money for it as you would on genuine leather. Weller says PU leather also is easier and faster to manufacture than the natural version. It's water resistant and easy to clean, as well. This does make PU leather ideal for use in places like kitchens and bars.
But there are some disadvantages of PU leather, too. For starters, it doesn't always look like the real thing, and it will never develop the soft, worn-down look of real leather. PU leather also is less flexible. That can cause cracking and tearing over time, which means a shorter life than you'd get with genuine leather. The color can fade, too, although you'll get more color options than what's available with real leather.
"Over time, faux leather can dry out and crack and flake, resulting in items that can lose function, look worn and be challenging, if not impossible, to repair," Weller says.
And perhaps another reason it is called "PU" leather is that it doesn't always give off the best odor. Weller says it is dependent on the manufacturing process, and some will even infuse scents that mimic the smell of genuine leather to mask the faux leather "fragrance."