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Polyester Couches: Durability, Benefits, Drawbacks, Cleaning & More

It used to be a struggle to find a new couch that was going to stay looking brand new no matter how long you had it. Now, thanks to its growing popularity, polyester sofas are affordable and available from a lot of mainstream furniture and home accessories brands. 

Today, we’re going to take you through all the positive attributes of this upholstery material, show you how it holds up against other fabric options (both natural and man-made), and tell you where you can buy the best polyester sofas and loveseats currently on the market. 

What is a Polyester Sofa?

Polyester sofa fabric is made using synthetic fibers, including microfiber, canvas, chenillefaux leather, velour, satin, tweed, and twill. It is a popular choice for indoor and outdoor furniture upholstery because it’s water repellent, impervious to discoloration (it doesn’t fade in the sun), and is proven to stand the test of time.

The long term durability of polyester makes it an ideal choice of sofa fabric for families with children and pets. 

Polyester Couch Pros

  • Water Repellent – the fabric’s tight weave makes it resistant to water and other liquids, which means it’s a great choice for indoor and outdoor furniture 
  • Stain Resistant – dirt and grime don’t easily penetrate polyester sofas
  • Pet-Friendly – high-quality polyester can stand up to claws and dirty paws
  • Hypoallergenic – polyester couches don’t collect pollen, dust, or pet hair, and they’re less itchy than wool-covered sofas 
  • Budget-Friendly – couches with polyester upholstery tend to be cheaper than those finished with natural fibers
  • Less Prone to Discoloration – other synthetic materials, e.g. acrylic, fade much faster 

Polyester Couch Cons

  • Less Comfortable – polyester is not as soft as natural fibers like cotton 
  • More Costly Than Alternatives – for cheaper synthetic upholstery options, consider olefin or microfiber materials 
  • Not As Breathable – polyester fabric’s tight weave can make the cushions too hot or cold depending on the temperature/environment 
  • Heat Sensitive – polyester is a kind of plastic, so beware of burn marks from hot coffee mugs, etc. 
  • Static Charge – static electricity clings to polyester couches, so you could be in for a nasty shock when you sit down.

Alternatives to Polyester 

  • Acrylic – a great alternative for both indoor and outdoor furniture; acrylic is durable and UV-resistant (which means no discoloration from sunlight), but it does scratch more easily than polyester. 
  • Cotton velvet – it’s soft, durable, and looks very upmarket; cotton velvet gives you long lasting style, but at a price. 
  • Faux leather – faux leather is sustainably produced and it looks almost as good as the real thing for a fraction of the cost, although it’s nowhere near as hardwearing. 
  • Microfiber – comfy and easy to clean, but prone to discoloration and a risky choice for people with sensitive skin. 
  • Olefin – olefin is water resistant, and it’s a very cost effective choice, however it doesn’t have the same durability as polyester. 
  • Suede – suede is a natural fiber, softer and cosier than normal leather, but a pain when it comes to cleaning.

The Best Overall Sofas of 2021

To help you find the best deep seat sofa, I tested individual models from over 23 different brands. These are the best new sofas with extra deep seats that balance the best in design, price, sustainability, and durability.

How Does Polyester Stack Up Against Other Furniture Materials? 

In terms of synthetic materialspolyester fabric seems to be the winner. Unlike, suede, for example, this middle of the range upholstery option is beautifully stain-resistant, and it’s much more durable than faux leather. In fact, it’s just as strong as natural leather, and nowhere near as expensive. 

But if you want the look and feel of high end, top-grain leather, there really is no alternative. Synthetic materials like polyester don’t look or feel as soft as natural fibers. However, polyester can be blended with other upholstery fabrics to make it softer and cozier, for a more budget-friendly option. 

Are Polyester Blend Sofas Different?

To create a better looking, higher quality, more comfortable sofa, polyester can be blended with other fibers (either natural or synthetic) like rayon or olefin. Couches upholstered in a polyester blend are even more stain resistant than 100% polyester couches. Plus, they can withstand more wear and tear. Polyester blend sofas are more expensive, however, because of the improved quality of the material.

How Long Will a Polyester Sofa Last?

A high-quality polyester sofa could last 10 years or more if it’s cared for properly. However, you should be aware that cheaper items may have shorter life expectancies, and excessive wear and tear can lead to a decrease in quality over the years, meaning you have to replace it before the 10-year mark. 

To get the most life out of your polyester sofa, make sure you turn the cushions regularly to get an even wear and take care of spillages straight away. Plus, it’s recommended that you give your polyester upholstery a good clean 1-2 times a year. It is stain resistant, which means it shouldn’t need too much scrubbing, but because of the static charge, it can attract pet hairs, so you’ll want to give your polyester couch a hoover every now and again. 

You can also protect your couch, and extend its life expectancy, by adding a slipcover; slipcovers are fitted protective covers that can be slipped on and off a piece of furniture, reducing the amount of wear it takes over time. Slipcovers are easy to take off and wash, and they’re cheaper to replace than a whole sofa. 

Which Brands Make the Best Polyester Couches and Loveseats

If you’re interested in purchasing a polyester/polyester blend sofa, check out our favorite three brands: 

1. Allform 

Allform are all about providing customers with long lasting style and comfort. Their high-quality performance fabrics are renowned for their durability. In fact, they are 3.5x more likely to last than standard industry upholstery

2. Wayfair 

Wayfair are one of the world’s biggest online home retailers. Their polyester couches are consistently highly rated. Check out the Monroe 66.5” Square Arm Sleeper, which has a 4.8/5 star rating from over 1500 genuine customer reviews. 

3. Birch Lane

Birch Lane are proud creators of traditional furniture that’s able to stand the test of time. They have a wide range of polyester couches, suitable for both indoor and outdoor use. Plus, you can also buy water resistant polyester sofa covers for your patio furniture here. 

Whether you’re looking for a sectional sofa with a chaise lounge or recliner, or you need a futon, settee, or sofa bed for a smaller space within your home, you won’t be disappointed by the high-quality, well-reviewed polyester/polyester blend pieces from these brands.

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