The temperature may be dropping, but that doesn’t mean our morals should too. One hundred million animals, such as mink, are bred and killed on torturous fur farms each year, with wild animals being inhumanely trapped and left to suffer for days, all to supply the fur industry.
Earlier this year, London Fashion Week became the first well-recognised fashion week event to pledge to become completely fur-free. Many luxury brands have also followed suit, such as Burberry, who confirmed that they “don’t think it is compatible with modern luxury and the environment in which we live”.
The fur industry is not only unethical but is so out-of-date that even Cruella De Vil would be turning her back on it. Here are three useful tips to ensure that you don’t get unintentionally caught out by the fur industry this winter.
Seek to Educate Yourself
Fur farming became illegal in the UK in the year 2000 after it was made clear that an overwhelming amount of the public supported an end to the practice. It is therefore easy to assume that we no longer contribute to the problem. However, unfortunately it isn’t as easy as that, and the UK continues to support the fur industry by importing fox, rabbit, mink, racoon, and chinchilla fur to this day.
A great place to start is Klatki, a short documentary from C.M Jackson that shows footage from mink and fox fur farms in Poland. If you want to end on a positive note, you can also follow Ferdynand, the rescued fox from the documentary on Twitter.
There's a full list of all our upcoming #FurFreeDay events on our Facebook profile! 🦊 Join one of them and make politicians hear the voice of the voiceless loud and clear! 📢 Share this information and follow our social media to show your support! 💛
Photo: Olka Knotz pic.twitter.com/soYjCOqd2C
— Ferdynand The Rescued Fox (@FerdynandTheFox) November 21, 2018
… But maybe you’re somebody who is already conscious of what they buy and checks the labels to see if it is faux fur?
Previous laboratory tests on high street brands have shown that retailers such as Missguided have been selling real fur with an incorrect label, despite their fur-free policy.
There is also a popular misconception that real fur is much more expensive than faux, and therefore the price tag will help identify the material. This is not the case, as the poor conditions in fur farms ensure that real fur can be produced at an even cheaper cost than fake fur, where you can find a raccoon pompom for just 30p.
Tips, Base, Burn
So, it looks like you have got to take matters into your own hands!
Humane Society International have created a concise guide to help you differentiate between real and faux fur, so you can ensure your next bobble hat is an ethical purchase.
TIPS: Real fur is pointed; faux fur is blunt
BASE: Part the hairs, real fur will be attached to leather and faux fur will have a woven fabric base
BURN: If you safely cut a sample of hair and burn it (one for already owned items, not ones on the Topshop shelf…) real animal fur will singe and smell like burnt human hair, whereas faux fur will melt and smell like burnt plastic
Stay warm this winter, without taking a coat off somebody who needs it more.