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Faux Leather Couch Peeling: A Step-By-Step Guide

Faux Leather Couch Peeling: A Step-By-Step Guide

Is your faux leather couch peeling and you’re wondering what to do?

You’re in the right place. We’ll show you all you need to know about how to fix peeling faux leather fabric on your furniture.

Although faux leather is cheaper than real leather and much easier to clean, it is more prone to peeling.

If you don’t try to stop it from peeling, it can spread. We will tell you what to do if your faux leather couch is peeling in this step-by-step guide.

Read on to learn more.

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How to Fix a Faux Leather Couch Peeling

For a post on how to fix a peeling faux leather couch, such a piece of furniture is shown with a rip that's starting to peel


Start by peeling away the loose pieces of faux leather and sanding them smooth. Choose paint to cover the exposed fabric and let it dry.

Roll it on or paint it with a soft brush. Let it dry, and do this over and over until you are satisfied.

Then use wax to set the paint, and finish up with powder to settle the wax. This simple and effective way can be executed by you without having to pay professionals:

  1. Peel away the pieces and sand the couch
  2. Paint the couch where the fabric is missing 
  3. Let the paint dry
  4. Sand it down again
  5. Repeat the first 4 steps
  6. Apply paste wax
  7. Sprinkle on powder to set the wax

Why Should I Fix My Couch?

There are professional companies that can come in and fix your couch for you, but there are some benefits to doing it yourself.

Who doesn’t want to take up a fun do-it-yourself home project? It may sound intimidating, but this project is manageable, I promise. 

  • Less expensive
  • Fun
  • Thrifty
  • Resourceful
  • Skill-building

How to Fix your Faux Leather Couch in 7 Easy Steps

You do not need to be a professional to fix your faux leather couch. These simple steps can be done at home just by using a few household materials or purchasing a few inexpensive items.

It is worth it in the end and will help to fix the peeling faux leather material. Follow this step-by-step guide and have your couch looking as good as new.

Step 1

Start by gently peeling away loose faux leather. Don’t pull too hard, or you will create a bigger problem.

Faux leather tends to peel quite easily. By peeling back, the loose faux leather pieces will leave the fabric exposed.

Then choose a sanding sponge that you can easily hold in your hand to gently sand down the rough pieces of faux leather left behind, creating a smooth surface.

Step 2

Time to paint! Interior latex house paint will do the trick. Pick the color closest to your couch.

Mix lighter or darker shades together to get the perfect tint. Pour a small amount of latex paint into a tray and use a small, handheld foam roller.

Dip the roller into the paint and apply a thin layer to the exposed fabric and sanded faux leather. Fabric and vinyl spray paint work well too.

Step 3

Let the paint dry fully. The next step won’t work if the paint is still tacky. Open windows, put a fan on in the room with your coach, and air it out.

Depending on the type of ventilation you have, humidity, and room temperature, the paint may take anywhere from 1 hour to 24 hours to dry. The paint must be dry before you move on.

Step 4

Using fine-grit sandpaper or the same sanding sponge you used previously on the peeling pieces, sand down the paint until your couch feels smooth.

It is ok if the fabric becomes exposed again; you will complete steps 1–3 again. Gently wipe away dust with a soft cloth.

Step 5

Repeat! It is necessary to repeat the last four steps four more times.

Every time you paint the couch, let it dry, and sand it down to a smooth finish, you are building up the layers of finish to look like faux leather and smoothing out bumps.

Step 6

Use paste wax to seal your faux leather couch. Paste wax rubs on and keeps your couch from feeling sticky.

Buff it with a soft cloth until it feels smooth and you can’t feel the wax anymore. Paste wax usually takes about 20 minutes to dry, much quicker than paint.

Step 7

Sprinkle talcum powder or baby powder on top of the wax to help it dry faster and set.

A makeup brush or a small paintbrush works great to apply the powder. Then gently dust off any excess powder. You wouldn’t want anyone sitting down and wrecking their clothing.

Things to Consider

To illustrate how to repair peeling faux leather, a close up of such an occurrence happening

Love Solutions/Shutterstock

There are a few things to consider when fixing your peeling faux leather couch to make things easier for you.

These simple suggestions and inexpensive materials can turn you into a professional couch fixer.

  • Vinyl repair kits
  • Finding the right colored paint
  • Rollers and Brushes
  • Textured paper

Consider Purchasing a Vinyl Repair Kit

A vinyl repair kit contains all the necessary materials mentioned above, so you do not have to waste time and money purchasing everything separately. Most upholstery or fabric stores carry these kits.

They usually come in various colors to match your couch, but they can also be limited in color selection. It is a one-stop-shop option when fixing your upholstery.

Match the Color Closely

Use a color matching chart or consult with a paint specialist to be sure your paint matches the color of your couch closely. You do not want to draw attention to this area; you want it to naturally blend in.

If you are using your paint, try slowly adding and mixing lighter or darker variations of the paint to match it accurately.  

Brushes and Rollers

Try not to get overly textured brushes and rollers for the paint and wax. You want a smooth finish. Small handheld rollers are the easiest to use.

Once you make your choice of either brush or roller, stick to it. You don’t want to start with a brush and then use a roller. The textures of the two tools will not be uniform.

Use Texture Relief Paper

Consider purchasing texture relief paper that goes down before the paint and the wax to emulate the surface of your couch more closely.

It can be very difficult to get the perfect texture without making your fix look noticeable. Textured paper repairs look more natural.

The downfall is that there is always the potential for the paper to become loose, and you will lose all of the work you have done to repair your couch.

So, How Do You Fix Your Peeling Faux Leather Couch?

Brown faux leather couch in a living room with an industrial style


In 7 simple steps, you can simply fix your peeling faux leather couch. Peel off the loose pieces of faux leather.

Sand down any bumpy or rough edges. Choose paint and gently apply a smooth layer of paint.

Let that paint dry and sand it down to a smooth texture. Complete the last few steps four more times, allowing time in between for the paint to dry.

Finally, apply paste wax to everything and sprinkle it with powder.