Can a sassy, powerful wardrobe exist without fur?

Taraji P. Henson attends the Empire season two premiere on Saturday, Sept. 12, 2015 in New York. Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP/Press Association

Taraji P. Henson attends the Empire season two premiere on Saturday, Sept. 12, 2015 in New York. Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP/Press Association

Back in April, in her interview with Alan Carr I realised my true love for Taraji P. Henson. Promoting the series Empire that rightly became a hip-hop drama phenomenon and made her character, Cookie Lyon, an icon. I was hooked! She is sassy, independent, powerful and funny, something to admire about the Queen of the Empire. But, when it comes to her wardrobe… don’t make the mistake.

What you wear defines your personality and Cookie is no different. Her choice of clothing accentuates her confident, out there image and fierce attitude. Just what she needs when she’s trying to claim back what she’s owed in the company from ex husband, Lucious.

So, why is it that fur and animal prints have got themselves the title of ‘powerful’, ‘expensive’ and therefore seen as a status symbol? Think Beyonce, Rihanna, Kate Moss and The Kardashians; they’ve all been spotted in their take on the animal trend with captions in awe of their style.

Sascha Camilli, PR Liaison for PETA, said: “The fur industry has been dying for a long time and is desperately trying to keep itself relevant by pushing free pelts onto celebrities who are often unaware of the horrors of fur proaction.

“Today’s consumers are savvy and know that faux furs can be warmer, lighter and more environmentally friendly and reflect the beauty of animals’ skins without inducing pain.”

What I think needs to be addressed and talked about is not how good they look but just how much damage they are causing. Every leather jacket, fur trimmed coat or snake skin handbag has been sourced from a suffering animal.

A spokesperson from The Vegan Society, Jimmy Pierce, said: “Animals should not be exploited to make clothing or in any other way. They are sentient beings with feelings, emotions and individual personalities, just like us, and have a right to life and freedom”.

The fashion industry has made some stands against this which is a positive step in the right direction. With Pamela Anderson launching a range of vegan bags and shoes last month and Stella McCartney being an anti-fur campaigner with none of her products ever being tested on animals.

Paris, France. 1st October 2015 -- Woman poses for photographers before Chloé show with love scarf during Paris Fashion Week Day 3, Spring/Summer 2016. -- Attendees and celebrities seen before the Chloé show at Paris Fashion week, Spring Summer 2016. Street style on day 3 of Paris Fashion Week Picture by: Andrea Astes / Demotix/Press Association Images

Paris, France. 1st October 2015 — Woman poses for photographers before Chloé show with love scarf during Paris Fashion Week Day 3, Spring/Summer 2016. — Attendees and celebrities seen before the Chloé show at Paris Fashion week, Spring Summer 2016.
Street style on day 3 of Paris Fashion Week Picture by: Andrea Astes / Demotix/Press Association Images

 

Although, it is important to mention that some pieces do use faux fur. The possible issue with this is that a clear difference must remain between the two. It is possible that while the fake appears on the high street, and even the celebs, it puts the desire to own such pieces in the heads of fashionistas.

“There is an argument that faux fur, faux leather and other fake animal products perpetuate the notion that real fur and leather are inherently desirable”, Pierce told us. “I understand that, can sympathise with it, but you cannot avoid the fact that faux products do not cause any animal any suffering, and are infinitely preferable to products derived from animals.”

If you watch in desperate need of making a daring choice and testing the head to toe leopard look, like we’ve seen on Empire, then please take my advice and remember in this case fake really is best.

Season 2 of EMPIRE, the show about music, family and power airs every Tuesday.

If you want to read more on the topic of making animal cruelty free choices then visit The Vegan Society

PETA also have some fashion specific information including a useful shopping guide.

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