(Photo via Stella McCartney)
The iconic Stan Smith sneaker.
Hooray! Conscious consumers have scored some major wins for the animals lately. Hourglass set a goal to become the first cruelty-free luxury brand by the year 2020. (Their new logo actually features bunny ears!) Los Angeles joined the fur-free brigade, becoming the largest city to ban the sale of fur fashion and accessories. And California passed a bill banning the sale of beauty products that were tested on animals in September.
My hunch is that over time, more and more beauty and fashion businesses will respond to the growing public demand for more stringent industry ethics. By now, they've grown hearts and/or realized that certain horrified consumers just won't have it, choosing to shop from companies whose practices they believe in.
But the forward-thinking leaders of the pack — like Stella McCartney, whose fashion empire has been cruelty-free circa 2001 — have voluntarily been several steps ahead for years. (Givenchy is another luxury brand featuring a veggie-leather model early on.)
Stella McCartney Stan Smith Collab Sneakers ($325)
They are definitely pricey, but here are some bargain shopping
tips from my fashionable friend Tamar:
- Buy them at Bergdorf Goodman to avoid paying tax
- Use code <BGFALL> for store gift cards for
purchases over $500 (Thanks, Tamar!)
As for the trend-right Stan Smith, a classic Adidas throwback style and the celebrity “it” sneaker of 2016? I won't lie — they're cute. I've wanted a pair of Stan Smith sneakers ever since all white sneaks became a street-style staple. Even when I was in Paris, those and Nike Free's were the "it"-shoe that I spotted on French feet everywhere. Celebs were all photographed wearing the hot shoe of 2016 and even Taylor Swift had them — I know because I was writing for a celebrity news site at the time.
But the initial collaboration between Stella McCartney and Adidas was already big news — she gained access to their vast, non-luxury market, and Adidas broke into the ultra-exclusive upscale sector. (Ever wonder where the elevated athleisure trend came from?)
With their launch of the Stan Smith sneaker collab, Stella has also scored a major win for the entire vegan community. Her own company's R&D developed this luxury vegetarian leather for her handbags, including smooth and suede options for her signature Falabella line. (I own one, and you cannot tell it’s faux leather!) Now, for the first time ever, her eco-luxe non-leather is becoming accessible to the masses. This is why I consider this launch to be particularly significant and news-worthy.
Let it be known that Adidas created a vegan sneaker and it's all thanks to our girl Stella. If this shoe does well, will Adidas start using the material in more of their footwear? My guess is yes. This would be excellent news for the earth, for the animals, and for all of us (our karma will totally improve).
For all the negativity in the world, I am actually grateful for the amazing, intelligent, and ethical people who believe in doing the right thing just because. It’s rare, it sets them apart, but it’s admirable AF. Even on those days when I'm caught up and apathetic, the lasting legacy of an earth-friendly fashion line will still be creating the sustainable prototypes for materials we will all be using at some point in the future. (Also why I see her sustainable eco-luxe fashion as a kind of investment. Same with limited edition Gucci RN — but for an entirely different reason.)
We compassionate and empathetic people live in an invalidating world, one where it takes an incredible strength of character and devotion to your beliefs to stray from the status quo for the future good. Doing so while under the spotlight of a billion-dollar global industry took the kind of strength that we can all emulate in our lives. She is an empowered boss babe who is a veritable economic and social force doing good in the name of a sustainable and more cruelty-free future. Yet another Brit-chick win.
Responsible leadership embodied by two of fashion's most-respected designers does a lot to lend this sector some credibility, which is often dismissed as “vain” or indulgent. Thanks to icons like designer Stella McCartney, daughter to my favorite Beatle (Paul) and badass fashion goddess in her own right, ethics are becoming fashionable.
P.S. Stella McCartney for President! Oh wait — she's British.
Do you want to try Stella McCartney X Adidas vegan Stan Smith's? Tell me on Instagram!
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