Faux Leather Makes Headlines

Olivia Munn pleather boots.There was a bit of an uproar recently when actress Olivia Munn was posing for photos in front of a billboard she did with PETA to boycott circuses because of the inhumane treatment of circus elephants. The controversy was over the boots she was wearing. Many people thought they were made out of leather. Olivia set the record straight when she tweeted that her boots were actually faux leather.

You might wonder why make such a big deal about a pair of leather boots? She was there to bring awareness to circus elephants, not cows. However, when a celebrity decides to go public on a heated and controversial issue like animal rights, people expect them to stay true to their cause. There is no room for hypocrisy once you take a stand.

People had a right to be upset about the leather boots. What most people aren’t aware of is the fact that in addition to the horrendous treatment that animals suffer when being raised and slaughtered for their hides, the process for treating the leather to keep it from literally rotting while you wear it involves a nasty mix of toxic chemicals. After all, leather is literally the skin stripped off of a dead animal and it takes large amounts of energy and chemicals such as formaldehyde, cyanide based dyes and finishes and pollutants such as lime sludge, sulfides and acids to keep the hide from decomposing. The adverse environmental impact far outweighs that of imitation leather, a.k.a. faux leather.

Perhaps the one good thing that came out of the Olivia Munn boot-gate is the fact that so many people were actually fooled by the faux leather boots. Today’s imitation leather, made with synthetic materials such as matte vinyl, looks so close to the real thing that most people can’t tell the difference.

If the environmental and cruelty-free issues aren’t enough to make you want to try a fake leather alternative, then the difference in price should. Real leather clothing and shoes can cost a small fortune. For instance, a tall women’s leather pair of boots at Zappos sells for $398.00. A similar pair of women’s tall faux leather boots sells for $19.99 at Old Navy. So its easy to get the celebrity look without paying the celebrity price.

When you’re looking to buy clothing, shoes or accessories that are made from imitation leather, make sure it says faux leather or pleather. Pleather is a synthetic fabric that combines plastic with a cloth type of fabric, resulting in fabric that closely resembles leather, hence the name pleather.

Its hard to look at real leather the same way once the ugly truth comes out about how it is made and where most of it is sourced. Even when leather products are made in other countries, such as Italy, the leather is often acquired from the cheapest source. Most leather comes from China or India, where animal rights and environmental regulations don’t exist. A visit to PETA’s website will supply you with plenty of nightmarish, disturbing videos of how animals are treated and slaughtered in these places.

Taking all of this into consideration, faux leather stands out as a much better choice than leather. Imitation leather means no animal had to suffer. Faux leather is better for the environment. In most cases, people can’t tell the difference between fake leather and the real deal. Pleather or any type of faux leather is almost always less expensive. And as more people become aware of the negative issues associated with leather, imitation leather is becoming more and more popular. Celebrities in the know are embracing faux leather because it is super stylish and you can wear it guilt free. So give faux leather a try and see how easy it is to live leather-free.

http://vegetarianstar.com/2010/04/28/olivia-munn-accused-of-wearing-leather-boots-at-peta-event/comment-page-1/

source: vegetarianstar.com

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