Exotic skins and animal furs are so last season

Victoria Beckham confirms her brand will cease all use of skins as of fall 2019.

Victoria is the latest in a long line of brands to confirms that her AW19 collection will no longer include exotic skins. A spokesman of the brand also made it clear that they “have been looking to action the use of more ethically sourced products that have less environmental impact for some time.”

This move follows the likes of Chanel, Vivienne Westwood and Diane von Furstenberg, all of whom have abolished the use of exotic animal skins. “We are happy to confirm that we will cease using exotic skins in all future collections as of our main fall 2019 ready-to-wear presentation. This decision reflects the wishes of not only the brand,but also that of our customers.” said a representative of the brand.

The step itself seems to be on trend and I believe is a sign of things to come. With the consumer wanting to be more ethically and environmentally friendly, the customer wants to know that what they are purchasing shares the same values. It’s not only clothing brands that are following the movement, but beauty brands are rising to the challenge. Veganism quadrupled in the 5 years between 2012 and 2017, according to Google search. This means that the brands need to cater for vegetarians and vegan consumers making sure that no animal products are used in their make-up and face creams. Chic, eco-friendly vegan options are everywhere these days and this is what the future looks like.

Some of the fashion powerhouses had only ever used minimal fur in their collections, however, others like Gucci heavily featured fur in their collections which made the news in 2017 to abolish it a historical moment. Many designers, however, have been fur-free for over a decade with the likes of Calvin Klein committing to their promise in 1994. The last 2 years has really marked a change in attitude for a lot of designers with the following making a stand in 2018/19.

Peta celebrate the movement and applaud the brands. They said that “Recent advancements in textiles have made faux fur and vegan leather nearly indistinguishable from animal pelts and skins, far more sustainable, and infinitely customizable.”

This being said there is argument to say that creating fake fur has considerable damage on the environment. Fake fur is made from non-renewable petroleum based products such as nylon, acrylic and polyester then treated with heat and chemicals such as resins and silicones to improve its look and feel. Claims have also been made that it takes one gallon of oil to make just three fake fur jackets. Then, after all the damage caused from making the product, the faux-fur garments end up in landfill after one season and, just like plastic bags, can take up to 1,000 years to decompose.

We are now moving into a new generation of young people who care more about their environment than generations before.

Will this mean that the trend of real and fake fur will die out completely? Will designers give up replicating furs and skins and put more effort in shrinking their environmental footprint? Or will fashion and the need to look good always rule supreme?