Vegan Summer Wardrobe: The Essentials
Finally, summer has arrived. Days are longer, nights are warmer, and cocktails on the beach become actual plans rather than just hazy Instagram-fuelled dreams. Chunky knitwear is forgotten and replaced by breezy dresses, bright colours and woven beach bags. Sandals and sunglasses take the place of boots and scarves, and the age-old question of bikini or one-piece comes back on the agenda.
Summer is one of the easiest seasons to dress as a vegan. Wool is off the menu, as is fur, cashmere and, mostly, leather (who would voluntarily sweat that much?). The only thing to watch out for is silk – an animal-derived material that is commonly produced by boiling silkworms alive. Instead of silk, choose eco-conscious, natural fabrics such as organic cotton, soft yet durable linen, or Tencel, which is made from wood-pulp cellulose. Alternatively, try some lesser-known yet ethical materials such as ramie – made from a nettle plant – or Cupro, crafted from a part of the cotton plant that's not used for making cotton. Both are natural materials that can be made sustainably.
When picking accessories for your vegan summer wardrobe, choose plant-based leathers where possible. Before the arrival of leathers made from plants, most vegan leathers were produced with the use of harsh, polluting substances such as PVC, which has been found to be among the most toxic materials in fashion. At Miomojo, we work with leathers made from cactus, corn, and apples – materials that are kinder to the planet than both animal skins and traditionally made vegan leathers. These materials are also completely animal-free, meaning that no animals were exploited or killed to make them. Plant leathers are stepping into the mainstream, rivalling conventional leather accessories – these days, a cactus leather bag and apple leather sandals are summer staples.
For a woven beach bag, look for materials such as jute, raffia, hemp, or sustainably sourced bamboo. . Be mindful of the fact that the material needs to withstand a lot: whether it's sun, sand or wind, a long summer full of days on the beach requires durable accessories that do their part, not only style-wise but also in terms of quality. That’s why our sleek and resistant backpack Penelope is the right fit for every summer adventure, from the beach to the mountain to the city. Did you know also that our Penelope backpacks (and other MJ-0 bags) are created with the use of discarded fishing nets and gear that's been pulled up from the ocean? As the fishing industry has a huge environmental impact and is extremely damaging to marine life, we are doing our part to repurpose this waste, while avoiding the use of new, virgin materials.
Of course, a summer wardrobe most commonly also includes swimwear. Check out the Australian swimwear brand Bondi Born and Stay Wild, from London, which are both also fellow B Corps. B Corps balance profit with social and environmental impact, considering the interests of employees, communities, and the planet. That’s why buying from a B Corp makes you part of a force for good.
Crucially, don't forget sunscreen – and after checking that the product you choose is vegan and free from animal testing: for example. Dermophisiologique, a B Corp certified benefit company like Miomojo, has an excellent selection of sunscreen products with photostable and non-absorbable filters and formulas free of mineral oils, petroleum derivatives, synthetic dyes, added parabens and alcohol. All rinse-off products have certified biodegradable formulas.