UGG, No, Thanks: Pamela Anderson Flunks Retailer on Vegan-Friendliness

PETA Honorary Director and Former UGG-Wearer Takes On Suede and Sheepskin Shoes

For Immediate Release:
June 17, 2016

Sophia Charchuk 202-483-7382

Santa Barbara, Calif.

For the first time, PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear”—has teamed up with longtime animal advocate and fashion entrepreneur Pamela Anderson to assess the vegan-friendliness of major retailers and clothing brands across the U.S., grading each one based on its selection of vegan materials, policies on working with animal-derived materials, and efforts to develop cruelty-free fabric technology.

The resulting letter-style grades run the full gamut from “A” to “F,” and one of the bottom-rated retailers is Santa Barbara County–based UGG, which offers no vegan options whatsoever for its wool, suede, and leather shoes. PETA Honorary Director Pamela Anderson, who used to wear UGG boots, wrote, “I used to wear them with my red swimsuit to keep warm—never realizing that they were SKIN! Do NOT buy UGGs!” The complete rankings are available on PETA’s website.

“If you’re still wearing animals, it’s time for a makeover,” says Anderson, who can be seen modeling a vegan leather jacket by Zara on PETA’s homepage. “PETA’s ranking of vegan-friendly retailers can help you clean the skeletons out of your closet.”

pam anderson rates vegan fashion

Retailers that received an “A” include bebe and Stella McCartney, thanks to their bans on angora wool, fur, and exotic skins as well as their wide selections of vegan leather shoes and vegan wool sweaters. H&M, Zara, Abercrombie & Fitch, and Ann Taylor are close behind, with each receiving an “A-.” Other highlights include “B” grades for The North Face—whose ThermoBall technology, which uses PrimaLoft synthetic fiber, is innovating cruelty-free insulation—and Free People, which has banned fur and angora wool and launched an exclusive vegan leather collection.

Aldo and Journeys each earned a “C” for offering numerous leather-free shoes—if not in-store, then online—while J.Crew’s meager vegan leather options narrowly landed it a “D-.” Joining UGG at the bottom of the list with an “F” are Everlane, with its all-leather collection, as well as Burberry and Michael Kors for their fur, leather, and exotic-skin merchandise.

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