There are still more than 100 million animals being killed every year to satisfy the global demand for fur even though amongst the animal welfare conscious fur has been an anathema for quite some time. That is why animal welfare activist and US chat show queen Ellen de Generes is co-launching a new brand to be part of the fur-free movement as revealed by FastCompany.
In conjunction with Leo Livzhetz, de Generes has launched UnHide initially with a range of soft faux fur-like blankets which are designed to feel as close to fur as possible.
UnHide’s plans to move blankets into fashion products over time such as coats and bags. The company has vowed to provide “radical transparency throughout the entire process” as it searches to innovate with various different faux fur textures.
The blankets which are made in China and can be machine washed and air-dried, are meant to mimic Chinchilla fur as much as possible. However, they are made entirely of polyester. Whilst in the short term, therefore, the new brand is kind to animals there is a downside, namely that polyester is not biodegradable. Generally speaking, the polyester fabric takes between twenty and two hundred years to decompose. Many activist vegans have to consider many factors in adopting a compassionate attitude to animals and planet. So whilst the products “not only make you feel good, but are here to do good,” unfortunately requires a bit of qualification. But on balance of course not harming animals trumps the recycling issue.
Technology now available to make recyclable faux-fur
By way of contrast, Stella McCartney recently launched a plant-based recyclable fur-free-fur coat, a move which put her brand in the forefront of the move away from fur which has been embraced by many fashion houses that have ditched real fur. Gucci, Calvin Klein, Stella McCartney, Tommy Hilfiger, Versace, Armani, Jimmy Choo, Hugo Boss and Vivienne Westwood have all stopped using fur. Even Her Majesty the Queen has stopped using fur in her new outfits.
The company will support the Humane Society of the United States by pledging a proportion of its proceeds to the nonprofit organization that supports animal welfare.
De Generes has frequently promoted the vegan perspective. Not so long ago she urged her then 77 million Instagram followers to “eat less meat” just like she is now urging people to stop wearing fur. With her wife, she has also recently invested in Miyoko’s Creamery having been impressed with the company’s “mission of compassion”.