Vegan plant based graphic

Starting a vegan clothing brand – What you need to know.

“A philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude-as far as is possible and practicable-all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose; and by extension, promotes the development and use of animal-free alternatives for the benefit of humans, animals and the environment. In dietary terms it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.”

– The Vegan Society

If you’re wanting to start a vegan clothing brand, already own one, or have a vegan business of any kind, the first and most important thing is to ensure your products are in line with your values. We’re going to look into what vegan clothing is, the certification to look out for and some of the products you may wish to use for your brand.

What is vegan clothing?

Vegan clothing is made without the use of animal products and ensures that no animals were harmed during the production. According to the Vegan Society, the demand for vegan clothing is substantial with the global vegan fashion market valued at USD $396.9 billion, expecting to reach USD $1095.6 billion by 2027. 

What animal products are used in clothing production? 

People are probably aware of the main materials in clothing that are not vegan, such as wool, angora, fur and leather, however there are elements of animal products hidden in clothing that you may not be aware of. If you want custom vegan clothing, these are the things to look out for:  

  • Glue derived from animals used in bags and shoes.
  • Dyes derived from animals. 
  • Silk, often used in coat linings.
  • Leather zip pulls. 
  • Beeswax used in waxed jackets.
  • Decoration such as buttons made from shells or bone.
  • Padding in jackets such as goose feathers. 

What is vegan clothing made from? 

It may seem like finding custom vegan T-shirts can be difficult due to all the hidden animal products, luckily however, the majority of fabrics used in garment production are vegan. These include: 

  • Cotton
  • Linen
  • Polyester 
  • Spandex
  • Lycra
  • Bamboo
  • Nylon
  • Rayon
  • Viscose

Additionally, if you are unsure if your clothing is vegan, you can always look out for PETA vegan certification on your garment care labels. 

What does peta certification mean? 

PETA stands for ‘People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals’ and is the largest animal rights organisation in the world with 6.5 million members and supporters. PETA approved brands have signed PETA’s statement of assurance which verifies that they have not or will not conduct or commission any animal tests on ingredients, formulations or finished products. 

After being certified, companies can then use it to highlight their cruelty-free clothing, accessories or home furnishings. 

A lack of PETA certification does not necessarily mean that the garments are not vegan. PETA certification is an expensive and lengthy process that not all brands can afford to do. The PETA certification gives an added level of accreditation but is not essential for certifying that garments are vegan friendly. 

What brands are certified as vegan? 

Here at A.M Custom Clothing in addition to stocking sustainable, ethical and Fairtrade garments, we also stock a range of vegan clothing products. The products listed below are PETA certified vegan, meaning that you can shop with confidence that they are 100% vegan friendly. Additionally, all of the items manufactured by our partners at Stanley Stella and AWDis are PETA certified.
If you are already or wish to start a vegan clothing brand, these are the products for you:

Are vegan clothes organic?

Just because a product is vegan certified it doesn’t mean it’s organic. Organic certification and vegan certification are totally different. Always read an items product description to ensure it’s made from organic cotton if that is what you’re requiring.

Vegan printing inks

Whilst our inks are not PETA certified vegan, our standard waterbased inks are vegan friendly and as environmentally sound as possible. We also use the gold standard when it comes to environmentally friendly embroidery threads, ensuring that every element of our production is to the highest sustainability standards. If like us, you get excited about print methods, we’ve got lots more information on our sustainable manufacturing processes and what makes them so special; just head over to our eco-friendly printing and embroidery pages.

Is vegan clothing eco-friendly?  

Searches for sustainable fashion are up by 75% year on year according to fashion search engine, Lyst. Vegan fashion is becoming increasingly important to consumers as they have become more conscious of animal welfare and the environmental impacts of animal farming and the fur trade. 

Vegan clothing may be more sustainable overall due to the lack of animal products used in its production, however, some vegan clothing alternatives such as vegan leather are not as durable and the need to re-buy products more frequently only adds to the environmental impact. Additionally, some vegan approved fabrics such as cotton or polyester can cause damage to the environment through the use of pesticides or added chemicals. For this reason, when purchasing your custom vegan products, we suggest opting for organic cotton or recycled polyester when possible.

There is no one-size-fits all solution to making fashion sustainable, however, every change that we can make in our purchasing choices and production methods contribute to our overall reduction in environmental impact.

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