Winter coat weather is here at last, which is totally depressing – until you wrap yourself up in a faux fur coat, that is, and feel not only deliciously cosy but fabulously fashionable too.
But would you still have that warm, fuzzy feeling if you knew you were wearing real fur?
In recent years, retailers including House of Fraser, Debenhams, Amazon and ASOS have been found by Humane Society International (HSI) UK to be selling real fur that was wrongly labelled as fake, so knowing how to tell the difference between the two is important for animal lovers.
As part of its #FurFreeBritain campaign, HSI UK has partnered with Made In Chelsea stars Lucy and Tiffany Watson on a video.
“Many people I’ve worked with wear real fur, knowingly or unknowingly, so it’s an issue I feel particularly strongly about,” Lucy says. “There really is no excuse for wearing cruel fur anymore, and I hope this video helps people make more informed and ethical decisions about what they’re buying.”
The vegan sisters talk through three tests you can use to determine whether the fur on a piece of clothing is real or not.
1. The Tips Test
Looks at the tips of the strands. Real fur tapers to a thinner point at the end (unless sheared). Faux fur tips are blunt where the material has been cut in manufacturing.
2. The Roots Test
Push back the fur and look at the roots. Faux fur is attached to woven fabric, whereas the base of real fur is an animal’s skin (leather).
3. The Burn Test
This is only to be conducted on an owned item – not in store! Cut and burn a few hairs. Real animal fur singes and smells like burnt human hair. Faux fur melts into a little ball and smells like burnt plastic.
Watch the full video below for examples of real and fake fur and download a wallet-sized guide from HSI to take with you when you’re shopping.