Tuesday, 10 January 2017

The Faux Fur Debate


Last week I read a brilliant post by fellow cruelty free and vegan blogger Nadia from Not So Quiet Grrl which asked the question Should Vegans Wear Faux Fur? Nadia's post touched on so many issues and arguments that have crossed my mind over the past few months and reminded me of a personal internal battle that I struggle with at times when it comes to buying faux fur. I therefore thought I may as well throw my two cents into the blogosphere!

When I first decided to embark upon my journey into veganism and leading a cruelty free lifestyle I knew that this would mean changing my lifestyle in so many different ways from my diet, to the makeup products I use and even the clothes that I wear. I am of course vegan for the animals, also known as an 'ethical vegan', and my decision to no longer contribute towards the suffering of animals meant that I was more than happy to give up buying things like leather, wool and silk. I never used to buy real fur anyway so this wasn't something that I really gave any thought to. 


More recently when it has come to being attracted to faux fur products in the shops I have found myself less and less inclined to buy it predominantly due to my fear that it's real fur and that others may look at it and think that I am wearing real fur. Whenever I see anyone wearing convincing looking fur I automatically shame them in my mind. If I was braver I would perhaps say something to them out loud, but i'm sadly not that confident. 


Faux fur has become increasingly more well made and at times I think it's really difficult to tell the difference between what is fake and what is real. To make matters worse, stories in the press have recently reported that certain stores are selling products that are labelled as faux but they've then been proven to be real fur. This scares me so much, I would be absolutely devastated to buy a product to then discover that it is in fact real fur and to know that I have contributed towards the vicious torture of innocent animals. This recent article from the BBC really sheds some light on the issue and highlights that just because a product is cheap doesn't mean that it wouldn't be real fur as in many cases faux fur is more expensive to produce.  

Is it therefore safer to just avoid faux fur products altogether? 

The logical side of my brain is telling me yes. I would never choose to wear a full faux fur coat or anything highly elaborate anyway so i'm pretty sure it's something I could live without. I have a few faux fur pieces in my wardrobe - a winter headband, the trim on my winter coat and the bobble on a wooly hat I own. It's definitely something I could live without buying again in future and not really miss.


On the other side of the coin, Nadia raises the valid point around how in this day and age it is actually of importance to show the world how easy and accessible it is to buy vegan alternatives to the real thing, thus promoting a more kinder and compassionate way of living without having to sacrifice all the things you love. I promote this in so many other areas of my lifestyle - vegan ice cream, vegan milk, vegan makeup, vegan leather handbags - so there shouldn't really be any difference when it comes to faux fur. 

I personally don't believe that vegans should be shamed for wearing faux products, and I certainly don't believe that by doing so they are any less vegan than someone who doesn't wear them. 

As a community we all want the same thing and ultimately want to protect animals from any form of suffering. 

If a product is indeed faux then it does fall within the brackets of what is agreeable within vegan etiquette. I think it is however our responsibility to ensure as well as possible that a product is faux and we are not being duped into buying the real thing. The Humane Society offer a very useful guide on how to tell the difference between real vs fake fur


What are your thoughts on the faux fur debate?      

Are you a vegan who avoids faux fur?

I'd love to hear some of your own thoughts and opinions on this issue!  
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3 comments

  1. Hey - I am a fellow Vegan blogger and agree all of your points are valid. I have never seen the appeal of fur or faux fur from a fashion perspective and so for me it doesn't seem to affect my wardrobe. I do however agree with Nadia and fellow vegan Kat Von D who, when challenged by cruelty free fans, stated that it is important to expose that there are options when it comes to faux fur and that if people really like 'fur' as a fashion that they can wear it while being cruelty free.

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  2. This is so interesting, I saw those same articles and it's scared me ever since. How can we ever be sure that the fur is definitely fake? I guess we can't!

    Beth xx
    www.myfunsizedlife.com

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  3. I feel like wearing faux fur makes fur less shocking? If someone walks past you on the street you don't know if it's real or not, so doesn't just promote real fur use??

    I dunno. It's a tough one! I never bought faux fur because I liked it, more it was probably attached to a good of a coat I liked but now I'm actively avoiding it. i couldn't live win myself knowing it might actually be real.

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