We need to talk about cruelty-free fashion
Why are leather handbags so appealing to the potential buyers nowadays when there are so many other alternatives to animal skin? Leather garments come in different shapes, sizes and colours; as they are introduced in the limelight by big brands. But would you still wear them if you knew the cruelty behind it?
There are many reasons that support this decision made by leather manufacturers. For instance, leather is durable on every fashion element. A leather handbag will last for a few years, comparing to a synthetic one, which can be used roughly between 6-12 months. In one phrase, leather goods are made to last a lifetime; and this is what customers are looking for. Also, garments made from animal skin can be used in all four seasons, as the leather is resistant to rain or even snow. Customer’s desire to invest in a long-lasting fashion element made from natural leather cannot be blamed because of the balance between the price and the quality.
But is it fair for the animals? Cows are slaughtered for their skin, sheep, pigs and goats are other commonly used hides, which are mainly sourced as side products of the meat industry. The state of the animal slaughterhouses is outrageous. The conditions are broadly known and generally highlighted by associations, such as PETA. Other incorporate practices include animals being skinned while they are still alive in extraordinary agglomerations in slaughterhouses around the globe. Moreover, skin from endangered species are used as well, such as alligator, python, or monitor lizard. This ruins the balanced proportions of living animals, as they are part of an ecosystem, in which none can live without the other.
Killing innocent animals with cruelty and brutality is unnecessary as nowadays there are other alternatives to leather. For instance, faux leather, which is a modern material that can give a glamorous, luxurious touch and look. Another substitute, ocean leather, can be used to provide the look and feel of the real one. It is cruelty free, made from kelp, a type of large seaweed. It is as durable as natural leather and popular for its fashionable look on clothing pieces, like shoes. Popular brands such as Stella McCartney or Vivienne Westwood already adopted those substitutes.
All in all, the modern technology brought alternatives to animal hide, fact which should be embraced by brands and buyers. Now, put that leather handbag aside and find yourself clothing pieces without animal cruelty behind it.