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Spotlight: Cruelty-Free Winter Warmth with Save the Duck

Italian brand, Save the Duck, proves that it's possible to create great performance outerwear that is 100% animal-free and eco-friendly.

Italian eco brand, Save the Duck, launched in 2011 with a mission to prove that it was possible to create great outdoor wear that was 100% animal-free and kind to the planet.

Every collection is made from luxurious, sustainably sourced and recycled materials that are wind-proof and water resistant. And most notably, instead of using duck down feathers, Save The Duck uses their proprietary PLUMTECH filling, made from recyclable polyester that imitates the fluffiness and breathability of duck down but with no animal cruelty involved.

While down feathers— derived from geese and ducks— are seen as the golden standard in quality insulation, the down industry is mired by animal cruelty and traceability issues. Over 80% of the world’s down feathers are supplied by China, with few manufacturers being able to guarantee animal welfare practices due to the opaque nature of the supply chain. 

In recent years several outdoor wear brands have been dogged by controversy and criticism due to their sourcing of down feathers plucked from live animals— resulting in extreme pain and distress for the animals— and fur obtained through the use of cruel leg-hold traps, as in the case of Canada Goose. Save the Duck prides itself on not profiting from animal cruelty—no fur, no leather and no down are to be found in any of their collections. And they demonstrate that you simply don't need to exploit animals to create high quality outerwear.

Fabrics from Save the Duck’s Pro-Tech capsule line offer a mix of high levels of performance, technical detail and protection against the cold, wind and rain, as well as allowing for freedom of movement, and comfort. Whereas pieces from their versatile Icons collection are so lightweight and compact that they can be rolled up and stuffed into a handbag. These quick-dry and breathable jackets will keep you dry and warm whether you're post-gym on a chilly day or going on a winter hike.

The brand has upped the ante on slick design too. It's latest Fall/Winter 2020 collection fuses urban streetwear with the outdoors, resulting in a cool, minimalist collection that can take you from the city to the mountainside. Earlier this year they also debuted a range of sustainable, animal-free and recyclable outerwear jackets for their Spring/Summer collection, which are made using 100% recycled materials, including recovered ocean waste from ghost fishing nets and recycled polyester from plastic bottles. A portion of the sales from this collection are donated to the Surfrider Foundation Europe, which is dedicated to keeping the oceans clean.

And if you think vegan fabrics compromise on performance and warmth in extreme weather, think again. In 2018, the brand became the first down-free outerwear sports gear used to scale Everest thanks to mountaineer Kuntal A. Joisher and his team, who had approached the brand about assembling gear that was in line with his beliefs and vegan lifestyle.

So, ditch the down and fur—leave it with the original owner—and keep warm ethically this winter.



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