vegan alternatives for clothing and shoes
Animal exploitation goes far beyond our plate; it can be present in many products in an obscure way, causing doubt and confusion about their origins. We’ll cover here materials used in the manufacture of items of clothing and other textiles (clothes, shoes, bags, accessories, table bed and bath, furniture upholstery, etc.)
The animal materials used for these purposes are by-product of livestock or breeding specifically for this exploratory purpose, or they may have been hunted in their natural habitat. Here are some of the most common materials and their vegan alternatives:
It is the leathery skin of animals used in shoes, belts, wallets, purses, suitcases, briefcases, coats, hats, among others. Most of the leather comes from animal victims of the livestock industry.
Despite the leather bulls and cows to be the most used, are increasing the use of many other animals for this purpose, such as goats, pigs, sheep, alligators, snakes, pigs, fish.
Warning: the so-called ecological leather is not vegan – is the animal leather tanning which is free of pollutants and harmful additives.
Vegan alternatives are: “leather” synthetic – produced from petroleum products; and “leather” vegetable – vegan and environmentally friendly alternative because its raw material is the latex extracted from rubber trees.
It is a kind of shaggy leather removed from the bottom of the skin chamois, goats, cows, pigs, calves, deer and especially lambs.
Synthetic suede substitute, produced from micro fibers such as polyester or polyurethane.
It is made from silkworm silk cocoon. About 1,500 silk worms are killed to produce 100 grams of tissue.
It is substituted for rayon made from a blend of polyester, rayon and other synthetic fibers.
It is derived from the sheep’s fur that after sheared, it is industrially processed.
The alternative is acrylic, synthetic wool, produced from petroleum products.
Some animals are hunted and others are bred in captivity for this purpose. A lot of species is a victim of this industry, such as chichilas, rabbits, foxes, seals, otters, badgers, beavers, among others.
There are synthetic clothing such as polyester and acrylic, which mimic the skins.
Among vegan products whenever possible we give preference to using vegetable and organic material, and recycled or eco-friendly synthetic materials for the manufacture of some of these products (mainly petroleum products) is extremely polluting.
plant materials commonly used in clothing are cotton, linen, jute, hemp, sisal, latex, among others.
How to identify the material used
There are some ways widespread popularly identify the material used in making the product – like smell, regularity, pattern, texture, etc. However, none of them is reliable.
Also do not rely solely on the word of the seller, who in most cases do not know the background materials used in parts (and some do not hesitate to say what the customer wants to hear). Ideally, look for brands of reliable companies that make clear the material used in their products and service via SAC have to solve all your questions about the cooking process and material. In Brazil there are already some brands of clothing and vegan accessories.
Exercise your power as a consumer: ask appropriate information from the manufacturer. If the information provided is not satisfactory, complain to the company, demand changes or even boycott that brand.