5 Types Of Sofa Materials And How To Choose The Right One

If you’re looking to spice up your living room with a new sofa, you might get easily overwhelmed with all the options out there. There loads of different styles and sizes of sofas that you could get, but more importantly, there are also loads of different materials used to make them.

While it can be pretty easy to match the style and size of the sofa to your room or home office, it’s a different conversation when it comes to materials. Materials will determine a lot more than just the looks of your new couch and it is essential to understand what each of them brings to the table to make the most out of it.

On that note, let’s take a look at what you need to know before you choose your new sofa material.

What To Consider When Choosing A Sofa Material?

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First off, let’s take a look at what you should consider when choosing a sofa material.

What’s Your Budget?

First and foremost, you have to set your budget. By setting your budget, you’ll know exactly where to look and you won’t end up falling with a sofa you can’t afford. Basically, you’re looking at three tiers – luxury, mid-tier or budget-friendly options. All of them have their pros and cons, but deciding on a tier will make the selection process easier.

How Often Will You Use It?

You have to consider durability when choosing the material for your new couch. If you’re looking to buy a new piece of furniture for the living room, you’re better off selecting a durable material that is easily cleaned and will be able to take some abuse.

On the other hand, if you’re just looking for a piece for your home office, you can splurge a little bit and get something more delicate since that one will probably be used a lot less often than the one in the living room.

Do You Have Pets?

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If you have pets, chances are, they’re going to climb up on that sofa with you. Therefore, you have to choose an easy to clean material and the one that won’t become a new home for your pets’ hairs.

Does Colour Matter To You?

At first, glance, choosing a colour is a simple task. Just find something that fits your decor, right? Well, not quite. If you live with pets or you have small children or if you like to eat in front of your TV or if you’re just generally clumsy, you should probably look for a patterned material that camouflages the inevitable stains quite well. Light-coloured materials aren’t really the best choice if you know that stains are coming.

On the other hand, if you’re confident that you won’t stain your sofa – choose whatever colour you like.

How Easy Is It To Clean?

Finally, you have to consider the maintenance as well. You’re going to have to clean your couch from time to time, but if you know that you’ll have to do it more often than someone else would – we’d advise going for a low-maintenance fabric.

Also, keep in mind that some materials will have to be professionally cleaned and you won’t be able to do it yourself.

Which Materials Can You Choose From?

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Now, let’s take a look at some of the materials you can choose from.

1. Leather

According to Sofa-club.co.uk, leather is the most widely used upholstery fabric for your sofa. Not only is this material comfortable and cool to the touch, but it also smells and feels luxurious. On top of all that, leather is very easy to clean and maintain. All spills are easily wiped, so, feel free to sip on a glass of red wine while lounging in front of the TV. Furthermore, leather is also quite durable and long-lasting with proper care, but be prepared to see some cracks after some time. Finally, leather is easily one of the most expensive upholstery fabrics, so keep that in mind as well.

2. Polyester

Polyester is a budget-friendly upholstery option and, because of it – one of the most popular. It’s highly customizable and can come in various colours, which might be important to you. It does feel rather premium, even though it is inexpensive, and on top of that – it’s quite comfortable. On top of all of that, polyester sofas are very low-maintenance, don’t stain easily and are quite durable, as well. On the other hand, polyester is quite flammable, which is something to know about if you’re a smoker. Also, the material will stretch over time and just like leather – it can crack.

3. Wool

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Although not commonly used, wool can be a great choice when it comes to sofa materials. It’s soft and comfortable while also being cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Furthermore, wool is both fire and water-resistant, so you can be more casual around it. It is quite durable and long-lasting, it won’t subject to mould or mildew, and it won’t fade or wrinkle. On the other side, you will have to splurge quite a bit for it.

4. Cotton

Another natural material often used for sofas is cotton. It’s very cosy and comfortable, it’s highly customizable, and on top of all of that – it’s very, very durable. Now, cotton can be both budget-friendly and luxurious, based on quality and thread count, so you can find a cotton sofa at pretty much any price point. Furthermore, cotton is naturally hypoallergenic, so if you have pets or suffer from allergies, this could be a good fit for you. On the flip side, cotton is very easy to stain, so be careful around it with your drinks or food. You’ll manage to get some of the stains out – but not all of them.

5. Linen

In the end, we have another natural fibre that is commonly used as an upholstery fabric for sofas. Linen is also quite often mixed with synthetic fibres to improve its durability, longevity and even comfort. It is one of the most affordable upholstery options you could find, but regardless of that, it is also one of the most durable ones. It very soft to the touch, it does not pill and it is also quite eco-friendly. What’s kind of bad about it is, it’s quite easily stainable and it can wrinkle and shrink, so you’ll have to clean it professionally from time to time.


Of course, there aren’t the only materials you can choose from. There’s also silk, velvet, jute, acrylic, rayon and many others, but these 5 are the ones that are most commonly used. Hopefully, we’ve managed to give you some good tips, and we hope you found this guide quite helpful.