If a true vegan doesn’t want to have anything to do with killing animals, then they can’t wear leather shoes, right? Footwear for the most part is made of some leather, and for a vegan or a vegetarian, this can be a problem. After all, our society calls for us to wear shoes in a civilized environment. So do they have to compromise their principles and wear leather shoes?
Or should they suppress their environmental concerns of living green and wear shoes that are manufactured out of plastic, which comes from fossil fuel that is pulled out of Mother Earth? Seems no matter which way a vegan chooses to go, there are even more issues to choosing the right shoe for living green practices.
For instance, leather is traditionally made from animal hides that are turned into leather by way of a chemical process. Those chemicals are often carcinogenic and toxic, like acids, ammonium salts, and chrome. As the leather industry has grown, there has been an increase in industrial waste and pollution coming from the tanneries.
And while this is still happening, the concern about living green and the environmental impact that everything has on earth, there has been a change by tanneries to use a vegetable based tanning process. And while the environmentally concerned consumer has been helped by this change, there is still a problem for the vegans.
There is more and more designer coming out with footwear that is using animal-friendly materials. Whew! A step in the right direction for living green! Now the question on the minds of fashion conscious vegans is can the rival non-vegan shoes still have quality and style without compromise?
The misconception that the fashion and style of vegan shoes are less than their leather counterparts is false. There is a wide selection of vegan shoes on the market today that are very popular among those who are trying to convert to living green styles. And where vegan based shoes didn’t have the longevity of leather shoes, manufacturers are finding a way to get around that, making quality shoes vegan-style.
While there is reluctant attitudes in the fashion industry to totally give up on leather totally. Some fashion experts will say that leather’s popularity is nothing more than the result of a person’s perception and not reality, making it superiority over other types of materials.
And let us consider the fact that many designer brands are based on leather, making it appear as a luxury. So until the perception of society changes and more people are focused on living green, the chance that vegan shoes will eclipse leather footwear is slim.