I had a very interesting conversation with one of my friends from Texas the other day, who is strictly vegan, and cruelty-free by all means and obviously does not wear fur. We both agreed that this should be one of my next blogs. Living in Colorado where fur and faux fur is very present, you may wonder sometimes what benefits (if any) this has for you, your closet, animals and how you should consider it now and in the future.
If at a certain period of time and still in certain geographic locations, fur was/is essential to keeping yourself warm… it is a sustainable “style” of course. However things have changed drastically today.
There are two forms of fur, the real one and the faux-fur. Which one is the worst, which one is the least sustainable? Both, but even more the faux fur. Why? Because it is made purely from plastic, usually it is cheap AND looks cheap, and will die in your closet in 2 years time.
So, is there any sort of “ethical fur” out there?
Yes there is. The first one is literally your close by thrifty store or local consignment shop. I can’t even tell you how many real fur coats I see in our local valley (Minturn and Edwards consignment shops for example). There are racks jammed with fur coats of all length, styles and colors. It’s vintage, and you know what I think of vintage? Yeah, you know! It’s classy, it has a story, it is unique, find the one that is you and plan on wearing it 20 years. Second option is buying from an overpopulated species destroying our environment or from a fairly paid indigenous artisan or both at the same time. Nutria are chewing up the Louisiana wetlands, invasive American minks are hellbent on wiping out the beloved vole in Scotland and rabbits have led to the extinction of several native species in Australia.
Things are evolving, more research is being conducted and if you can take a look at the Spring/Summer 2020 catwalk of Stella Mc Cartney, she thought a bit further with a coat made from faux fur koba (a corn by-product blended with recycled polyester). Interesting.
To resume, faux fur is still a sustainable no-go and no matter how technology is evolving and shown on the catwalk, second hand is still your best option. Remember that wearing vintage is preventing more waste, and is more sustainable. Feel free to take your old fur coat for some “botox” service by upcycling it and give it a bit of a fresh look!
Buy less and have the longevity of your purchase as a big reminder.
There is no shame in wearing a fur coat, the one from your grandma or the one from a consignment shop as it cuts down the production of new ones or some other shitty faux fur…
Also, you are free to wear none of the above, and if it makes you feel better and suits your sustainable lifestyle, I would say my friend, go for it. You are not wrong either, and I truly appreciate seeing you being yourself and beyond.