This economic and cruelty-free alternative is a great pick for a luxurious style upgrade—no matter the season.
Wearing fur has withstood the test of time simply because it’s so practical. Case in point: ancient tribes wore all sorts of animal pelts to stay warm in sub-zero winters. Over the centuries, fur adopted a new purpose: to communicate luxury, evolving into a status symbol for nobles and the upper classes. Today, fur still brings clout to the runway—luxury brands like Fendi even showed all-fur collections in recent seasons—but authentic fur is not the only option for elegant, functional outerwear. In just a few decades, faux fur has established itself as an ethical and affordable alternative to the real thing. And you can wear it in warmer months too.
Why go faux?
Those with vegan or vegetarian lifestyles may want nothing to do with real fur. There is also increased awareness about harmful practices in fur marketing industries in some countries. But perhaps even more influential? Faux fur has not only become acceptable in fashion circles, it’s also downright cool. Current faux fur pieces are often good looking enough to rival the real thing.
Faux fur vest, $125, asos.com.
Where to shop for faux fur
Along with designers like Stella McCartney (a longtime vegan who won’t use fur) and Giorgio Armani (who recently announced his label was going fur-free), mass-market retailers have distilled this high-fashion influence into easy, wear-everywhere pieces. Street brands like H&M, Forever 21, Topshop and Zara regularly roll out faux pieces starting at just $40, while boutique companies, like the British brand Shrimps (featured in the first image)—which has won a cult following for its unique colour-blocked faux fur coats—are on board as well.
Faux fur ponytail holder, $8, urbanoutfitters.com.
How to wear it in warmer weather
Spring is not the season to sport a faux fur coat, so try collars, purses and jackets with fur detailing—they will look great with everything in your closet. Fur might have a fancy history, but faux fur jackets and accessories work just as well with a pair of skinny jeans as they do with a cocktail dress. Whether you opt for a vintage-inspired piece in black or ivory, or go bold with colour, this is a statement-making essential guaranteed to garner a second glance on the street.
Miss Albright faux fur-detailed purse, $148, anthropologie.com.
Liza Darwin has written about fashion for publications such as Nylon, MTV Style, Yahoo Style and Fashionista. In her spare time, she writes about practical and affordable fashion for eBay.com as well.
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