The weather is starting to get chilly, which means it’s almost time to start breaking out the winter wear! Here in Chicago, I’ve already seen a ton of people wearing their winter coats, which unfortunately means I’m also reminded of the cruelty we inflict on our fellow animals just for the sake of a piece of clothing.
I probably don’t need to remind you why wearing down and fur is wrong. Animals raised for down and fur are raised and killed in similarly cruel conditions as animals farmed for food, and some animals are trapped in the wild for the sake of their fur. This suffering is wholly unnecessary; there are plenty of vegan winter coats!
Even more disturbing is the recent trend of passing real fur off for faux fur. A 2016 investigation by Humane Society International UK found that items labeled as “faux fur” were actually revealed to contain minx, fox, and rabbit fur in a laboratory test. Not surprisingly, the faux fur dupes came from the fast fashion industry—yet another reason to embrace sustainable and second-hand style.
If you’re in the market for a new winter coat, look no further. Here are five ethical and vegan outerwear brands you can trust to only market synthetic fur and down. I hope you can look into these and like-minded brands for your own winter shopping, and recommend them to friends who are considering Canada Goose or a similarly cruel alternative!
Warm and Luxurious Vegan Winter Coats & Canada Goose Alternatives
Vaute is the world’s first entirely vegan upscale fashion brand and the first vegan brand to show at New York Fashion Week. The name comes from the French word for “vote,” because Vaute believes that “every dollar, word, and minute you spend is a vote.” This is a philosophy I wholeheartedly agree with—we vote for the type of world we live in with each and every choice we make. Supporting vegan fashion (and withdrawing support from its violent alternative) is a vote for a more peaceful world.
This Montreal-based vegan and sustainable outerwear brand is dedicated to making cruelty-free outerwear affordable. All their items run under $250. Beyond being completely animal-free, they also use sustainably-sourced materials: their fills are made with 100% recycled plastic water bottles!
Another Canada-based vegan outerwear brand! Wuxley emphasizes the warm performance of their winter gear. All their products are made in Canada with high labor standards. They also partner with a number of animal organizations including PETA, Animal Rights Toronto, Toronto Wildlife Center, and others.
Save the Duck’s mission is in the name – this USA-based outerwear company aims to displace the down industry and save millions of ducks in the process. They have a variety of outerwear from rainwear to heavy-duty winter coats. Their Plumtech down alternative is made from 100% recycled polyester from used water bottles. They’re also certified by Textile Exchange GRS, the leading non-profit promoting sustainability in textile production.
This Amsterdam-based vegan company designs sustainable outerwear made from hemp. I love their focus on constantly upleveling their production to become even more sustainable and support the waste economy. For example: they’re currently working to replace the cotton used in their jackets with recycled hemp flower from medical marijuana! I love to see companies looking for new innovative ways to use materials that would otherwise go to waste, and that’s exactly what Hoodlamb is doing.
Ladies Classic Hoodlamb
I hope you check out these sustainable and cruelty-free winter wear brands! Every dollar that we spend truly is a vote for what type of world we want to live in, so it’s so important to vote for peaceful production! Do you know of a winter wear brand doing it right that’s not on this list? Let us know below!
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Photo: Respective brands