Accessory News. Those Fake Pleather (PVC) Bags Could Be Harmful To Your Health. Second City Style Fashion Blog

November 7, 2007 • Accessories


Considering buying a fake pleather knock-off of that Jimmy Choo bag you are just dying to have? Well besides the fact that most can tell it’s a bad imitation, it could also be dangerous to your health. Come on, you couldn’t think that ‘faux-leather’ smell was good for you, could you? Well maybe this will encourage you to reconsider, amid pressure from consumer, health and environmental groups,Target is reducing its use of the plastic polyvinyl chloride (PVC) in
packaging and children’s products, such as lunch boxes and bibs, according to the Wall Street Journal. Take heed, pleather is bad.

PVC Facts: Polyvinyl chloride, or PVC, is a cheap, durable form
of plastic commonly used in building materials such as pipes, as well
as consumer products such as handbags, toys, electronics and shower curtains.

PVC is made with vinyl chloride, which the
Environmental Protection Agency has classified as a human carcinogen.
People can be exposed to the chemical through discharge of gases from
factories, groundwater and occupational exposure, the agency said.


It is one of the most common synthetic materials. PVC is a versatile resin and appears in thousands of different formulations and configurations. Over 14 billion pounds of PVC are currently produced per year in North America. Approximately 75% of all PVC manufactured is used in construction materials. 

Dioxin (the most potent carcinogen known), ethylene dichloride and vinyl chloride are unavoidably created in production of PVC and can cause severe health problems, including:

  • Cancer
  • Endocrine disruption
  • Endometriosis
  • Neurological damage
  • Birth defects & impaired child development
  • Reproductive and immune system damage

When produced or burned, PVC
plastic releases dioxins, a group of the most potent synthetic
chemicals ever tested, which can cause cancer and harm the immune and
reproductive systems.

We hope this scares you straight…buy real leather or canvas. We are not advocating that you must spend a ton of money to buy a great bag. There are plenty of less expensive and safer alternatives.

Sources: WSJ, Healthy Building Network, BeSafeNet

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