There is nothing worse than deliberately trying to make ethical choices about clothing and make-up that is cruelty and fur free, and then finding out you’ve been lied to by the label.
A Sky News investigation has uncovered just that, after finding four types of animal fur being sold as “fake fur” on the British high street.
A fibres expert identified several “faux fur” products to be items containing raccoon dog, rabbit, mink and even cat. We banned fur farms in Britain in 2003 due to the immense cruelty they inflict on animals, but sadly fur farmed in Asia is still filtering into the UK market.
Sky found real fur being sold as fake in House of Fraser and Missguided, the online fast fashion outlet. Both these retailers have fur free policies.
“This is a problem in two ways. Firstly it’s a problem for the animals who are suffering awful, deprived lives and excruciating deaths on fur farms and traps around the world to produce these products,” Claire Bass, executive director of Humane Society International, said.
“And secondly, it’s a problem for consumers, who are not being protected from unfair trading, who want to shop ethically and avoid the fur trade.”
All the items Sky found were labelled as “made in China” and cost less than £30.
Bass went on to say that “life is really, really cheap” in the mass fur farming industries, with animals being kept in terrible conditions, not given any veterinary care and fed awful food.
One shopper, Donna Allison, says she bought a pair of pink pom pom heels from Misguided and suspected the fur was real straight away. However, the retailer dismissed her concerns by reminding her of their no fur policy.
Fibre expert Dr Greaves confirmed that the shoes were indeed made from real animal fur.
“My life is basically animals and cats, so it’s really hurtful, really shocking,” Allison said.
House of Fraser has since stopped selling a pair of gloves that have a rabbit fur trim following the investigation.
A spokesperson for the store said: “House of Fraser has a strict no fur policy and we ensure all of our suppliers and brand partners are aware of this.
“We would never knowingly mislead our customers, who we believe have the right to know what they purchasing. We are extremely concerned that fur can be mislabelled in this way, particularly for brands that we stock.”
They offered to give any customers concerned about purchases they’ve previously made containing animal fur a full refund.
Missguided similarly agreed to address the matter urgently and has launched an investigation into its suppliers. The shoes have been removed from sale.
READ MORE: Pet Fur Watches Are A Thing