Hi guys! At your request, I put together this designer dupes handbags post for your viewing and shopping pleasure, simply click on the handbag name to shop it. I’m including links to both the designer items as well as the dupes so that you can better compare both items if need be.
That said, the whole point of this post is to show you two things. Number one that you don’t need to spend thousands of dollars or even hundreds to buy cute & stylish handbags. Number two that there is absolutely no need to use animals for accessories. Your style can be cute and cruelty-free simultaneously.
One last thing before we get to the post, have you seen the news about Vegan Fashion Week?! It’s so neat! It starts today in Los Angeles and it’s the first ever Fashion Week that’s 100% Vegan! I can’t wait to see all the gorgeous vegan accessories and clothing that’ll come out of this show!
I’ll be sharing more vegan brands soon but in the meantime, make sure you sign up for the blog newsletter to get new post notifications, exclusive content, and be automatically entered to fun giveaways!
I’ve had my Chanel Boy Bag dupe for a little over 2 years now and it’s still in great shape. I thought, given the price point, that this bag was going to fall apart after a few months but it’s held up very nicely. I used it for two of my recent outfits. See how I styled my Chanel Boy Bag dupe with pops of red here, with leopard print here, and with camouflage here.
See how I styled my Cult Gaia Ark Bag dupe with a dress here and with jeans here.
You guys, there are SO many designer dupes out there. I’m planning to do a couple more of these posts, if you all want to see them. Let me know by leaving a comment here or over on my Instagram. Let me know what you thought of this post, or what else you’d want to see in these kinds of posts. I hope this post helps illuminate those that think vegan handbags and accessories are dull and boring. I’m also going to be sharing some awesome vegan brands that offer gorgeous pieces across all style categories, so stay tuned for that. Let me know what you thought about this post or if you have any categories you’d like me to cover for next time. I love hearing and seeing all of your feedback!
Labor Day sales started a week ago even though Labor Day isn’t until tomorrow, Monday, September 1st. This day is huge for retailers and the bloggers that influence people like you to buy from those retailers. My inbox filled up with sale reminders from blogger platforms. I signed up for these platforms years ago when I first started blogging. These platforms give me access to affiliate links, resources to help me figure out what sells best and which items I should promote to get more sales. If you don’t already know, I get a small commission for every product sold via my blog. I never really paid much attention to these sale reminders because I never felt the need to push a plethora of items onto you all. I don’t like selling needless items. I like providing value and showing you helpful things/products.
Don’t Fall Into The Labor Day Sales Trap
After seeing the film The True Cost this year, I decided to take a more minimalist approach to my wardrobe, for ethical reasons. I started closing my affiliate accounts and taking my name off blogger platform lists, newsletters, and pr lists. I didn’t want to clutter my wardrobe and home with more stuff and I don’t want to tell you to buy things you don’t need. These retailers are literal experts at making you think A) you need all these things they’re selling; B) the more you buy, the more you save; and C) you’re losing money if you’re not buying their products. Click here to listen to my podcast episode where I cover how to shop more consciously, sustainably, and with intention.
It’s An Influencer’s Job to Sell You Things
This is always something that bothered me about blogging. I’d see (and still do) many bloggers cramming as many products into a post as possible in order to get you to buy more. Everyday there’s an entirely new outfit complete with new shoes and accessories. It’s not about style anymore. Maybe it was a first, but as the blogging industry grew and retailers noticed how much trust readers placed in their favorite influencers, they harnessed that buying power. It’s an old model with a modern delivery.
We tell our readers, via social media/blog posts, to buy the brand’s products and they pay us a commission. The more outfits/items we push on our readers, the more money we’ll make. That’s why you used to see a blogger/influencer post 1 outfit a day, maybe 2 sometimes, but in the last year it’s really ramped up. Influencers started taking to posting videos in order to showcase more outfits per post. I’m sure you’ve seen those short video clips where an influencer changes into 5 or 6 outfits in just 30 seconds flat. Then the description will show a link to buy the dozens of items seen in the video. This has been very lucrative for some bloggers, some of which rake in an average of $600,000 per year. Can you see how a blogger would be incentivized to create and endorse more looks/products?
“Buy less. Choose well. Make it last.” —Vivienne Westwood, fashion designer
Are Your Labor Day Sale Items Supporting Slave Labor?
Cheap Garments = Cheap Labor = Human Exploitation
Big shopping days like Labor Day, are massive earning days for influencers. If you’re following any fashion bloggers you’ve probably already seen a few Labor Day Sale “Must Haves” posts. You are made to think you need these items and you’ll be saving loads of money by purchasing from these curated lists. Millions of you buy into those posts, but what you won’t see are the many massive negative effects of this type of consumerism. These blogger sales lists are typically full of items made in unethical shops where workers are exploited. You can recognize those items by their price point and their country of origin. If a garment was made in Bangladesh, India, Cambodia, Sri Lank, or China, it could very well be a product of slave labor.
There is no way to ethically and sustainably produce and sell a shirt, or any garment, for $5. Purchasing items at such a low cost means someone else is paying the true cost in the form of forced labor. There have been recent reports of H&M still using child labor. Additionally, hundreds of workers from both GAP and H&M have reported daily abuse. For more in-depth coverage on the topics of cheap garments, cheap labor, human exploitation, unsustainable production, toxic chemicals produced by the fashion industry, and more, see my IGTV video which you can watch by clicking here.
It’s a very common practice among bloggers to buy massive amounts of cheap clothing from fast fashion retailers like Forever21, FashionNova, Shein, H&M, Zara, TopShop, Amazon, to name a few, in order to create as many outfits as possible. Typically bloggers market their cheap finds as “budget-friendly” or “dupes”. They may think the’re doing their readers a favor, I thought I was when I did this, but they’re not. We have the power to decide what kind of conditions these exploited workers will have. If we stop buying fast fashion, they’ll stop making it. If we demand more ethically made clothing, brands will have to pay workers more and provide them with better working conditions. It’s my responsibility as a blogger to share this with you all and it’s our collective responsibility to shop more conciously and ethically.
“The customer has to know they are in charge. If they don’t like it and don’t buy it, we don’t have jobs.” – Stella McCartney
Are Your Labor Day Sale Items Supporting Animal Cruelty?
Then there’s the animal exploitation aspect. Most bloggers use a lot animal materials in their outfits. There is nothing chic about using animal products in your wardrobe. There are many faux versions of these materials now. Here are some of the most commonly used animal materials.
Leather: used for shoes belts, bags, jackets, coats, accessories, etc.
Wool: used for coats, sweaters, tops, pants, blankets, socks, gloves, jackets, hats, rugs, shoe linings, coat linings, dresses, shawls, pillows, handbags, etc.
Feathers: used for dresses, skirts, coats, jackets, accessories, jewelry, handbags, pillows, duvets, etc.
Fur: used for coats, jackets, shoe linings, coat linings, fake eyelashes, accessories, rugs, pillows, home decor items, etc.
Silk: used for shirts, dresses, jackets, coats, pants, accessories, shoes, home decor, etc.
The methods used in producing these items are horrific. If you haven’t seen how fur is produced, take a look at this 60 second video (warning: it’s explicit). Click here to watch on Youtube.
How can you spot the difference between faux fur/leather and real fur/leather? Click here for my post on how to tell if your clothes and shoes are vegan.
Most (I assume) fashion bloggers don’t know about the cruel and horrific ways animals are tortured and killed for their skins and fur. I certainly didn’t know up until 2 years ago when I went vegan. But once I learned, it was obvious that eliminating animal products from my wardrobe was the right thing to do. If you agree with that using animals is cruel and unnecessary, send this post to your favorite fashion/style blogger and tell them to stop using animal products.
Are Your Labor Day Sale Items Supporting Environmental Degradation?
The best thing you can do to avoid buying unethical, unsustainable, anti-animal friendly items during Labor Day Sales is to not buy anything at all. If there’s an item you truly need, consider the following options.
Instead of throwing out your freshly ripped tee or jeans, consider taking it to an alterations shop to have it repaired. These types of repairs only cost a few dollars. You can also fix ripped jeans yourself by adding a fun and decorative patch in matter of minutes with just an iron, no sewing required.
Consider recylcing your unwanted clothing into new items. Old jeans can be turned into shorts. A hole can ruin a shirt but if you choose to add more holes it becomes a cool new distressed tee. You can also remove sleeves off a shirt and now you have a new shirt, I’ve done this with ruffle sleeve shirts. Conversely, you can add sleeves to a sleeveless shirt to create a whole new look.
Instead of buying new items, consider having a swap party with friends, family, neighboors, or all of the above. You can swap unwanted items for new items to freshen up your wardrobe or even household goods.
Thrift stores are a great way to shop sustainably. When you buy new items, you create a demand for more new items which means more resources will be used to create those items. Shopping thrifted does not create a demand for more new items, in this way we save resources and directly stop funding forced labor. If thrift store options are limited in your area, consider thrift shopping online. Click here to read my post on the top 5 places to thrift online.
Cheap Garments = Unsustainable Production Methods = Toxic Chemicals Dumped into Our Environment
Cheap Garments = Poor Fit = Short Garment Lifespan = Garments Quickly End Up In Landfill
Cheap Garments = Poor Quality = Item Warps/Fades/Rips = Garments Quickly End Up In Landfill
Buy Ethically Made/ Sustainably Sourced
If you really need to buy something new, look for an ethically & sustainably made option. Websites like DoneGood.co can help you source great options. You can shop from catergories like Vegan, Cruelty-Free, Eco-Friendly, Made in the USA, Recycled/Upcycled and more.
Is anyone else loving this headband/hair accessories trend right now? I’m totally obsessed with it. I’ve been buying hair clips as if I were a six year old girl. I can’t get enough of them! I’m particularly loving this cheetah print bow headband from Anthropologie. The print is so pretty and perfect the current animal print trend. Additionally, the fabric is super silky soft and best of all this headband has a wire inside. I love these types of headbands because you can shape the wire inside the bow anyway you want and really adjust it to wear your headband just the way you like it. I love feminine pieces with with a bit of edge and this headband is exactly that. I feel like I can’t pull off a fluffy pink headband but this leopard print headband is perfect for feminine girls that like a bit of edge. This piece is currently 20% off right now which makes it $14!
My jeans are sold out but I linked a similar pair by the same (and my favorite) brand ever. They’re from Nordstrom and they’re currently doing 2x points on all purchases through May 12th. Nordstrom credit card holders earn 6x points! I just ordered myself some more of these Good American jeans because they have THE BEST fit! See my previous post about their fit here and see two other ways I styled these Good American jeans here and here.
Is this not the prettiest spring dress? It’s been about four weeks since I purchased this pink floral maxi wrap dress and I’ve probably worn it, 5 or 6 times. I seriously love it so much. If you’re looking for a dress to celebrate Mother’s Day, or just a really pretty spring dress for any occasion, I can’t recommend this one enough. The fabric (viscose) is lightweight, flowy, soft, and breathable. It’s such a casual fabric but the elegant cut of this dress makes it easy to dress up. Last year and the year before I didn’t take any photos on Mother’s Day and I sort of regret it. I wish I had done a better job documenting that time. However, this year I’m prepared. I’m not sure about the accessories just yet but this Mother’s Day I’ll be wearing this gorgeous floral wrap dress. Sizes are starting to run out and I’ve never seen dresses by this brand restocked so if you know you want it, grab one before it’s too late!
How fun are these clear heels? Did you know they’re Manolo Blahnik dupes?! Yes! The designer version are like $750 and not vegan but these are under $40 and made with vegan leather. I love finding a good vegan shoe dupe to a designer shoe! I linked them above and I also linked some more fun clear heels in this post all about the best vegan shoes for spring trends 2019. Be sure to check out that post for all sorts of spring styles that will keep you right on trend this spring.