While the fashion industry still has a long way to go in regards to creating a highly sustainable and highest possible quality substitute for animal leather, we are currently blessed with one of the most innovative substitutes available – cactus leather.
Cactus leather is a more sustainable leather alternative made from Opuntia Cactus (also known as Nopal) that has been developed in Mexico. The production process of cactus leather starts at a certified organic cactus farm in the state of Zacatecas in Mexico. To make cactus leather, just the mature leaves are harvested, keeping the core of cacti intact. Thanks to this, in 6-8 months the leaves will grow back in order to be re-harvested again. The cactus plant requires very little water to grow. Rainwater is enough, without any need for artificial irrigation, so no nasty toxins on your skin, which are common in conventional leather.
With a durability of around ten years, the cactus leather’s basic features, elasticity, and breathability are similar to those of animal or synthetic leather. The final cactus leather product is partially biodegradable and has no toxic chemicals, phthalates, or PVC.