Vegan Leather: Why It’s A Trend You’ll Want To Follow
“Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.” – Vincent Van Gogh
Changing the whole world can feel like an impossible feat, but changing your world – the one you live day in and day out – can feel much easier to manage. Taking one small step each day creates a domino effect of change; even beyond what you see.
An easy place to start? Making the switch from leather to vegan leather.
Most vegan leather is made of polyurethane; a synthetic resin that can be saturated in various shades and tailored to be rigid or flexible. However, this versatile material is making waves for more than just its aesthetic appeal. Here are three reasons why vegan leather is always the way to go:
Vegan leather cruelty-free
Each year, billions of animals – from cattle and pigs to deer and horses – are slaughtered for their skins and hides. Oftentimes, these poor creatures are mistreated and abused yet leather products continue to flourish in the fashion industry. Among being poorly treated, many of these animals endure “extreme crowding and confinement, deprivation, and unanesthetized castration, branding, tail-docking, and dehorning; as well as cruel treatment during transport and slaughter. (source: PETA)
Sustainable production process
Mother Earth takes center stage as vegan leather’s number one fan. Raising an extremely large amount of animals for food and leather requires a vast amount of feed, pastureland, water, and fossil fuels. According to PETA, animals on factory farms produce 130 times as much excrement as the entire human population, without the benefit of waste treatment plants; threatening the cleanliness of our waterways. The process of making leather also requires a massive amount of energy and dangerous chemicals, like formaldehyde and coal-tar derivatives, that are considered hazardous by the EPA. (source: PETA)
No toxic tanning process
The process it takes to tan leather can be highly polluting and pose health hazards to workers. One of the most common tanning methods used is called chrome tanning; a fast, yet low-cost, process that uses heavy-metal minerals that are harmful to the environment and workers. (source: Heddels)
Another method that’s often used is vegetable tanning. It’s thought to be less harmful than chrome tanning since it’s a more “natural process,” but, unfortunately, it’s equally as damaging to the Earth and humans. Despite using natural fibers such as oak and chestnut trees, the process it takes to acquire these materials requires significantly more water and deforestation. (source: Heddels)
While leather is a prominent fabric that’s used for many different accessories and clothes, I think it’s safe to say that carrying around a killer bag is way better than a bag that came from killing.
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