A leather sofa is a stylish, high-end addition to any living space, and with proper care, these pieces can last for many years.
When shopping for your leather sofa, Ariel Richardson, Founder and Lead Designer at ASR Design Studio recommends carefully reading the verbiage of the product before purchasing. “You could think you are getting a real leather sofa, but it in fact could be ‘genuine’ [bonded leather] or faux," he says. "A good tell for real leather is to lift the sofa cushions—the bottom of the cushion is normally a fabric to minimize costs."
While researching leather sofas for this piece, we considered factors such as the type of leather used, color options, cushion fill, and overall construction quality. The Pottery Barn Turner Square Arm Leather Sofa is our top pick thanks to its range of sizes and leather colors, as well as its high-end construction and comfy down-blend cushions.
Here are the best leather sofas.
Best Overall: Pottery Barn Turner Square Arm Leather Sofa
Multiple sizes available
Dozens of leather colors
Comfortable down-blend cushions
White glove delivery
Long lead time for select materials
The Turner Leather Sofa is a best-selling option—and for good reasons. It has a contemporary yet timeless silhouette with square arms and a comfortable deep seat, and it comes in four sizes, ranging from 64.5 to 103.5 inches wide. You also have your choice of more than a dozen top-grain, aniline leathers, including classic hues like caramel and black to bold options like indigo blue or berry red.
This leather sofa also stands out thanks to its top-quality construction. It boasts a corner-blocked, kiln-dried hardwood frame for exceptional durability, and the legs have adjustable levelers for stability on uneven floors. No-sag steel sinuous springs provide cushion support, and the seat cushions have a foam core wrapped with down for a delightful cushy feel. The sofa will look stately in just about any room, but it’s still extremely comfortable for everyday use.
The Turner Leather Sofa will arrive at your home via Pottery Barn's white glove delivery, which means you won’t have to lift a finger, and there are a few quick-ship leather finishes that ship within a few weeks. However, if you’re looking for a custom leather color, you may have to wait a few months for your sofa to be made to order.
Best Sectional: West Elm Zander Leather 2-Piece Chaise Sectional
Left- or right-hand configuration
Sustainably sourced wood
Comfy overstuffed cushions
Genuine or vegan leather
Only one quick-ship leather color
The Zander Leather 2-Piece Chaise Sectional offers the perfect cushioned spot to lounge after a long day, and its chic mid-century design will be an attractive addition to your living room. The chaise-style design can be ordered in both a right- or left-hand configuration, and you can choose from more than a dozen leather finishes, including several vegan leather options. However, there is only one finish that ships quickly—all the rest are made-to-order and will take six or more weeks to be constructed.
The Zander Sectional has a stylish exposed wood base with splayed wooden legs, and its frame is crafted from sustainably-sourced wood. The cushions are filled with a combination of foam and down for a soft feel that you’ll sink into, and the two pieces of the sofa are held together with alligator clips. The design features side cushions for ultimate comfort, no matter how you sit, and stylish details like the piped edging make it a statement piece for your home.
Best Budget: Mistana Milton Vegan Leather Square Arm Sofa
Removable cushion covers
Only one-year warranty
If you want the look of leather without the high price tag, consider the Mistana Milton Sofa, which has a stylish modern design and budget-friendly price tag. The caveat, of course, is that it’s not genuine leather—this sofa is covered with a PVC-based faux leather that comes in either caramel or black. It may not have the same lush feel as genuine leather, but it will still look high-end in your living room.
This sofa features a boxy silhouette with tufted back and seat cushions, and all the covers are removable for easier spot cleaning. It’s supported by a durable frame (though it’s medium-density fibreboard, not solid wood), and the cushions are filled with foam for ample support. The sofa actually ships in a box, meaning you will have to put it together yourself, but assembly is quick and easy.
Best Splurge: Pottery Barn Jake Leather Sofa Chaise Sectional
Wide range of sizes
More than 40 leather options
Multiple cushion fill options
The Restoration Hardware Maxwell Leather Sofa is an absolutely stunning heirloom-quality piece that’s a worthwhile splurge for your home. The sofa has a blocky silhouette with square arms and is available in six different lengths between 5 and 10 feet, and you’re also able to select from three seat depths. Those aren’t the only ways you can customize this sofa, either. There are options for either poly-wrapped foam or down feather cushions, as well as multiple leg finishes and more than 40 types of top-grain, pure aniline leather.
The Maxwell Leather Sofa is as well-made as they come, thanks to a handcrafted kiln-dried frame made from solid hardwood. It has reinforced joinery with mortise-and-tenon construction, as well as eight-way hand-tied springs for unmatched durability. The cushion backs are finished with fabric that allows the leather to breathe, but the visible top portion is covered with leather for a seamless look. It’s hard to find anything to fault with this well-made piece of furniture, but of course the high quality comes with an extremely high price tag to match, especially if you’re not a Restoration Hardware member.
Best Mid-Century Modern: Article Sven Charme Tan Sofa
Multiple leather options
Qualifies for free shipping
Develops a relaxed look over time
For a chic, well-priced mid-century sofa, you can’t go wrong with the Sven from Article. It has a sleek form and tapered wooden legs, and the attractive Italian-tanned leather comes in four colors, including the classic tan that’s often found on mid-century pieces. The sofa has square arms with piping details around the edges for a more defined look, and the full-length seat cushion is slightly tufted for a fun textured appearance. Plus, the piece even comes with two matching bolster pillows that offer both comfort and style.
This sofa has a sturdy corner-blocked wooden frame, and its cushions are filled with a combination of high-density foam and polyester filling. Both the seat and back cushions are loose, and they’re backed with fabric for better airflow. While the Sven Sofa has quite a defined appearance, it’s worth noting that it will develop a relaxed vintage look with regular use, which some people might not like.
Best Modular: Burrow Block Nomad Leather Sofa
Built-in USB charger
Multiple arm and leg styles
Free color swatches available
Limited color options
In addition to adding clean-lined, contemporary flair to your home, the Nomad from Burrow is quite customizable. It features top grain Italian leather in your choice of three shades—chestnut, slate, and camel. But that’s just the beginning. You can pick from six different leg finishes and three arm styles to make your ideal piece. Optional add-ons include a moveable chaise, ottoman, and bolster pillows for added comfort and style.
No matter how it’s customized, every Nomad is built on a warp-resistant Baltic birch frame with cushions stuffed with three layers of foam and soft fiber. Each sofa has a built-in USB charger that really gives it a modern vibe. It’s also made with ethically-sourced materials produced with the environment in mind. And, the sofa is fairly wide; There's plenty of room for three or more to sit—or one person to sprawl out and nap.
Best Faux Leather: Williston Forge Natasa Faux Leather Rolled Arm Chesterfield Sofa
Solid wood frame
Attractive button tufting
No one will be able to tell that the Williston Forge Natasa Sofa isn’t made from real leather—except your wallet, that is! This beautiful 91-inch sofa has a classic Chesterfield design, complete with rolled arms, nailhead trim, and button tufting along the back and base. It comes in two shades of brown, and it’s covered with a polyurethane-based faux leather, which is why it’s much more affordable than a genuine leather sofa.
The Natasa Sofa has a solid wood frame with supportive sinuous springs, and it can comfortably seat three people with its 800-pound weight capacity. Its cushions are filled with a combination of foam and feathers, and they are on the firm side—an important distinction if you like a cozy couch that you can sink into. The cushions can be removed as needed for spot cleaning, and overall, this well-priced sofa would make an elegant addition to any living space.
Best Modern: Castlery Jonathan Leather Extended Sofa with Ottoman
Sleek modern design
Cozy deep seats
Includes matching ottoman
Limited color options
The Jonathan Leather Extended Sofa has a minimalistic design with a sleek low profile, making it the perfect accent piece for a modern home. It’s available in two warm leather shades, and it has luxurious deep seats that are ideal for lounging. This oversized sofa even comes with a matching ottoman, giving you somewhere to rest your feet as you kick back and relax.
This sofa has a solid wood frame and sinuous spring suspension, and its cushions are filled with both foam and polyfiber for a soft, yet supportive feel. The edges of the sofa feature flange seams that offer both durability and a defined silhouette, and the piece qualifies for free shipping to select cities.
Best Traditional: Pottery Barn Brooklyn Leather Sofa
Many leather options
Long lead time
For a classic couch with a traditional design, the Brooklyn Leather Sofa is both attractive and well-made. It features pleated rolled arms with brass nailhead details, and it has a simple silhouette that can be incorporated into virtually any living space. The couch can be made in a wide variety of leather finishes, from classic shades of brown and black to eye-catching white or green, but the downside is that there’s a long lead time (generally 17+ weeks), as the piece is made to order.
In addition to its good looks, this sofa is also impeccably made and will last for many years with proper care. It has a corner-blocked frame and no-sag steel springs for cushion support, and there are even adjustable levelers on the legs to help it sit properly on uneven floors. The sofa features polyester-wrapped cushions for a firmer feel, and the front legs even feature caster wheels for a unique vintage touch.
Best Sleeper: Lark Manor Rasberry Rolled Arm Sofa Bed
Good selection of leather colors
Firm, but comfortable seat cushions
Supportive queen-sized mattress
Made in America
Frame contains manufactured wood
The Lark Manor Rasberry Rolled Arm Sofa Bed has a timeless traditional design, and it does double duty as a queen-size pull-out bed, giving your houseguests a comfortable place to sleep. The design is available in more than 12 different leather colors, and it’s made to order right here in America. It has rolled arms and block legs for a classic appearance that will fit into any decor style, and the mattress can support up to 750 pounds, making it large enough for two people.
This sleeper sofa has foam-filled cushions that our tester said were firm but comfortable, and the innerspring mattress offers ample support—though it isn’t the most plush option out there. Because it houses a mattress, the Rasberry Sofa Bed weighs more than 200 pounds, and you’ll likely need assistance to move it into your home. However, you can’t beat the price for a genuine leather sofa, and it will look high-end in any space.
Our best overall pick is the Pottery Barn Turner Square Arm Leather Sofa, which comes in several size and a wide range of leather colors. It's extremely well-made, and its down-blend cushions offer a comfy yet supportive place to relax. If you're specifically looking for a sleeper option, we recommend the Lark Manor Rasberry Rolled Arm Sofa Bed, which has a queen-size innerspring mattress to accommodate your guests.
What to Look for in a Leather Sofa
Type of leather
For a piece that’ll stand the test of time, the pros say that real full-grain leather is hands-down the best material to choose. However, note that some of the customizable sofa options may also include nylon faux leather upholstery in places, explains Richardson. “For faux leather furniture, Definitely look for a vinyl that is commercial-grade so it will last you a little bit longer,” explains Richardson.
The experts explain the differences in types of leather:
Bonded leather: “Bonded leathers are made from a pulp of leather scraps, adhered to a fabric backing, coated in polyurethane, and embossed to look like leather grain,” says Betsy Moyer, co-founder of Retreat. “A sofa made of bonded leather will lead to a short lifespan, as inevitably that polyurethane coat will break down, causing the material to crack and flake.”
Note that bonded leathers can also go by the name “genuine leather,” so be sure to further research furniture with that label before making a purchase.
Full-grain leather: This kind of leather bears the natural lines and markings of the cowhide for an authentic appearance.
Top-grain leather: This is leather that’s been polished down for a smooth, uniform appearance. It’ll still display some unique markings and will develop more markings and a patina with wear.
Faux/vegan leather: “Vegan leather is often made from polyurethane, a polymer,” says Richardson from ASR Design Studio. “It can also be made from materials such as pineapple leaves, cork, apple peels, other fruit waste, and recycled plastic.”
Leather dying process
Within these categories, there are three types of leather based on different dying and treatment processes.
Aniline leather: Also called “naked leather,” it has the most natural-looking aesthetic, but since it’s not coated with any polymers or pigments, it has a tendency to stain easily.
Semi-aniline leather: This kind of leather has a treated surface that makes it more resilient against wear and tear, but not as much of the natural texture shows through.
Protected pigmented: This type of leather is the most durable and commonly used type (it's also used for car upholstery), but because of how it’s treated, it does not have the unique aesthetic quality of aniline leather.
For a top-quality leather sofa—or any type of sofa, for that matter—look for one with a solid kiln-dried wood frame. The process of kiln drying removes moisture so the wood won’t warp or crack over time. Plywood and particleboard are commonly used for frames, but those materials may not be as durable.
Look for a leather sofa with cushions that are stuffed with materials that offer a balance of plushness and support, such as springs or high-density foam with an outer layer of soft fibers or down feathers.
Richardson recommends a foam core surrounded by a plush down envelope. “This is more expensive but also more comfortable,” she says. “If you are allergic or sensitive to organic materials, then be sure to look for a synthetic down. If you want a really soft seat, consider feather-down cushions.”
How do you clean a leather sofa?
Be sure to understand the proper way to clean a leather sofa before pulling out the vacuum or cleaning solution. To remove debris, use a brush tool for the cushions and a crevice tool for getting in the nooks and crannies between. Then, you can create a gentle cleaning solution by mixing a few drops of mild soap in a bowl of warm water.
For tough stains like grease or ink, blot up any access liquid first. Sprinkle grease spots with a layer of cornstarch and let sit for at least four hours (or overnight) to absorb the oil. For ink, swipe a damp cloth with mild bar soap, then gently wipe over the stain in a circular motion. Finally, you can use a leather conditioner to restore and maintain the suppleness of the sofa’s texture and protect it from future wear.
How do you repair peeling leather?
Peeling leather requires the help of a leather repair kit. The first step is to create a smooth surface, so you'll want to scrub off the flaking bits with a cleaning brush and a mild cleaning solution. Then wipe it dry, wipe it with alcohol, and sand down the area with sandpaper. Follow the instructions of your repair kit for recoloring the damaged area.
Of course, the best solution is to invest in a real leather sofa that doesn’t peel in the first place. “Good quality leather won't peel when properly cared for," says Moyer from Retreat. “If your leather is cracking and flaking, it might be worth considering that you may have an inauthentic full-grain leather alternative.”
How do you protect a leather sofa?
Conditioning is key. Follow the above steps for cleaning and be sure to condition your sofa every six to 12 months. In addition, you'll also want to pay attention to sofa placement. "If possible, all leather should be kept out of heat and direct sunlight," says Stephen Kuhl, CEO and Co-Founder of Burrow. "[This will help] avoid discoloration and peeling over time.”
How long do leather couches last?
The best leather sofas can last up to 20 or 25 years if they are very high quality and made of genuine leather. Faux-leather couches tend to only last about five years. You can also get more years out of your leather sofas by cleaning and conditioning them consistently.
Why Trust The Spruce?
This article was written by Camryn Rabideau, a freelance writer and product tester for The Spruce. She has a background in design and ample firsthand experience testing furniture, and while researching sofas for this article, she evaluated factors such as the type of leather used, color options, construction materials and techniques, as well as delivery options, product warranties, and more.
Additional research was done by Karen Tietjen, who enlisted the help of Burrow co-founder Stephen Kuhl, designer Ariel Richardson, and interior decorators Karina Lameraner and Betsy Moyer. They shared advice, tips, and answers to frequently asked questions.