Shopping can be daunting as a vegan (avoiding wool, silk, leather etc…), and trying to ensure that no humans were harmed at the same time can make it even more of a challenge. Sweat shops are more common that retailers would have you believe, and it’s a mine-field out there if shopping on the high street. Worry not dear friends, for there are plenty of fair trade and ethical brands out there, and – as part of my contribution to Fair Trade Fortnight – I am going to share some of my favourite animal and human friendly clothing options with you!
My go to brand for affordable and fashionable clothing, and they come with a gorgeous little statement on each tag, ‘Wear What The World Can Afford’. It really sums it all up and connects with me in a way that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside! Most of their clothes are made from hemp or organic cotton (environmentally friendly and less toxic chemicals pumped into the environment), but some are made using wool, so don’t assume you can buy everything on the site.
I’m in love with this fantastic new dress – it’s fun, quirky and perfect for the upcoming Spring months!
Braintree are also stockists of the 100% vegan footwear range, Inkkas – a socially conscious company – and their gorgeous range of hi-top trainers are made under fair-trade conditions by artisans in Peru. I couldn’t resist them and have my own pair at home – they’re so comfy and they are sure to make your feet stand out in a crowd!
Nomads are another wonderful, down-to-earth brand. I’m pretty sure everything is vegan on their site, mostly made from organic cotton, and all fair-trade.
Everything is so affordable and unique – I’m loving this cute cardigan with a beautiful lining print.
Nomad’s promise ensures that no children under the age of 16 are working in their factories, pay is fair, and equal for men and women. Safe working conditions are in place and traditional crafts and promoted. Organic cotton is also used to promote sustainable and environmental fashion.
You can be sure when shopping with Nomads that your purchases are fair and no-one has suffered for you to look your best.
And if you’re looking for something simple, yet completely ethical (scoring no less than 100% on the Good Shopping Guide), why not take a look at Liv. This plain and simple organic tunic vest at £10, shows you that it doesn’t have to cost your pocket to save the Earth!
If beautiful shoes are more your thing, I have two sites to delight the socks off you!
Will’s Vegan Shoes
I first came across this brand at one of the numerous Vegan Fairs/Shows held in London each year. What a delight they are. They are even described as human and animal friendly shoes – how wonderful is that? It completely takes away the whole, ‘Well, I know they’re vegan, but are they ethically made?’ and any brand that does that are a winner in my eyes.
From comfy sneakers to knee high boots, all made in Europe, there’s something for everyone (men too) and for every occasion. They are a little pricey, but the quality is fantastic and you definitely get what you pay for. These cut-out biker boots are bang on trend, and you can walk with peace of mind!
This site is a little like shoe porn to be honest. Beautiful shoes, and ones you can feel good for buying (and not just because they looking stunning on the end of your legs)! Based in Brighton, but with shoes made in sunny Spain, Beyond Skin are on a mission to make sure that no-one (be they animal or human) is badly treated in the making of their shoes. They also pledge to give 1% of their profits to social and environmental enterprise. Despite using plastics and other man-made materials, they are conscience of using those with the minimum possible environmental impact. I love them – and who can deny that this shoe is gorgeous?
This is obviously just a start, as there are many lovely ethical brands out there, who are kind to both animals and all of the other lovely people we share the planet with. One of my favourite brands who have both vegan and non-vegan clothing (but are completely fair-trade or ethically made) are People Tree. Well worth checking out – and for those bargain hunters amongst us, they have some great sales!
Thanks for reading – happy shopping!