Faux fur might seem more ethical than real fur, but is it? Animals aren’t harmed in the making of faux fur, but to create the materials needed for faux fur it requires a process that is may hurt animals and is highly damaging to the environment, causing pollution and lowering the quality of life, for everyone.
What is Faux Fur?
Faux fur is made up of synthetic polymeric fibers such as polyester, acrylic, and/or modacrylic, which are all essentially plastics. The fibers for these materials are derived from petroleum, coal, air, water, and limestone. See more on how faux fur is made here.
The raw materials used in faux fur can come in a powder or pellet form, they are then melted down and spun into fibers like cotton candy. These fibers are then woven through fabric and sheared to the desired length, to mimic a specific type of fur.
What Does Faux Fur Plastic Mean for the Environment?
Plastic is absolutely terrible for the environment; one of the main focuses of recycling is to eliminate this improper discarding of plastic.
Plastic is harming the words wildlife at an alarming rate. According to The Ocean Conservancy, plastic is being found inside the bodies of seabirds and sea turtles because they are thinking it is food. More than 60 percent of seabirds and 100 percent of sea turtles have been found to have plastic inside of them. Along with this, Forbes pointed out that there is evidence of this plastic pollution leading to the extinction of various animal species.
And to make matters worse, plastic does not biodegrade usually. Even plastics that are labeled as biodegradable can last for hundreds of years, that’s hundreds of years of damage to our earth’s wildlife and environment.
Faux Fur Sheds and Pollutes our Oceans
Mark Oaten, CEO of International Fur Federation agrees, saying he couldn’t see “how it’s possible for a chemical-based product to be more sustainable than a natural-based product”
“Some of the fake fur is saying that it’s being developed using recycled plastic, and that’s great, however, it’s still plastic” a plastic that will not last as an article of clothing and eventually get discarded in a landfill.
Also, faux fur sheds, just like real fur. But real fur shedding is like the shedding of your dog, it is natural in the environment and biodegrades easily, while faux fur sheddings are fibers which contribute to pollution of the oceans and do not biodegrade.
Jeffrey Silberman of textile development and marketing department at Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, points out that when those small fibers fall off a faux fur article they end up in oceans and landfills and won’t biograde. This faux fur only adds to the already massive problem of millions of tons textile waste in the United States that end up in landfills every year. When a few synthetic fibers might not damage the environment, image the damage when there are thousands of tons of faux fur coats that end up in landfills because they are don’t last and have a turnover rate of just several years.
There is Evidence that Natural Fur is Better for the Environment than Faux Fur
This process of making faux furs is also more damaging to the environment than natural fur. Real fur is far superior to faux fur, real fur is a natural product and it will biodegrade in the environment but lasts for decades as a piece of clothing you can use. This minimizes the need for the production of new products because fur products last for decades unlike synthetic clothing which falls apart after a few years.
A study done in 2012 concluded that real fur did less damage to the environment and was better for human health than faux fur. It was found that faux fur causes twice as much damage to global warming and uses twice as much non-renewable energy than natural fur.
The Food Industry is MUCH Larger than the Fur Industry, That is Where Our Focus Should Be
While the fur industry kills about 1 billion rabbits and 50 million other animals per year, a total of 1.05 billion, the food industry is killing and torturing over 56 billion animals every year, and that’s not including the millions of tons of sea animals.
That is over 56x times as much killing and cruelty being done by the food industry over the fur industry.
Faux fur is not a good alternative to real fur and in many ways is much worse, damaging the planets overall health in a much more severe way.
Vollbracht furs is dedicated to providing up-to-date stylish fashions while delivering the best, and highest quality service. To see more of what Vollbracht has to offer please visit our online catalog here. Call us with any questions on inventory and sizing 216-378-3626