LOOK: New vegan leathers used by fashion designers and labels

Published March 22, 2021, 5:42 PM

by John Legaspi

From Mylo to Desserto, here are some plant-based pieces you need to add in your style diet

These days, plant-based or vegan consumption goes beyond to what you put into your mouth. For many, what goes to their closet also follows a strict diet, only ethical-free and sustainably made pieces are allowed. For some years now, it seems like the fashion industry has been listening. 

Science meets style to protest for a much greener runway and retail floors. With the pandemic still going on around the world, it gives everyone, especially fashion giants, the push they need to design clothes with materials that are focused on being more eco-friendly.

The latest of these materials are the vegan leathers. While the vegan term is quite reassuring, not all of them are sustainable as others are made from non-biodegradable materials and plastics, which don’t do much for the environment for years to come. 

But as more advancements were done, the industry now has leathers that are truly vegan as they are hailed from plants. Check out three new plant-based leathers and see how the fashion industry is incorporating them in their latest works.

Stella McCartney’s bio-based leather pieces

Mylo x Stella McCartney

Since the beginning of her brand, fashion designer Stella McCartney has been an advocate of sustainable and cruelty-free fashion, opting not to use animal-sourced products such as feathers and leather. In her latest work, the designer created a bustier and utilitarian pieces with Mylo’s bio-based “mushroom” leather.

Well, the material is not entirely made of mushroom but just a part of it. The leather is grown from mycelium, which comes from fungus. According to the brand, the material is “remarkably similar to animal products with fewer environmental impacts, it is also not petroleum-based unlike most current synthetic options, meaning more fossil fuels can be kept in the ground and less plastic is deposited into landfills and oceans.”

H&M’s Science Story square-toed sandals

Desserto x H&M

Fashion retail brand H&M’s latest initiative, Innovation Stories, presents the Science Story, a collection that pays tribute to the brilliant minds behind fabrications of the future. 

The line introduces new materials such as Evo, a bio-based yarn made from castor oil, and Desserto, a leather sourced from cactus plants. Developed in 2019, this plant-based leather highlights Mexico’s effort in creating a green fashion as it incorporates no toxic chemicals, phthalates, and is naturally tanned.

Amélie Pichard’s bag made of Beleaf

Nova Kaeru x Amélie Pichard

Earlier this year, accessories designer Amélie Pichard launched a bag made from Elephant ears leaf called Beleaf, an innovation by Brazilian firm Nova Kaeru. 

According to the designer, “the Beleaf is not melted with PU (plastics) components to be transformed in fabric. It is treated with organic oils to protect its surface, then varnished and lined with undyed linen mixed with polyester in order to keep resistance.”