Labels: Sustainable Fashion

This is not just a photo of my chicken legs or sustainable sneakers but a post for you to stop and read! Today, I’m answering all the questions I’ve received about vegan and sustainable fashion starting with "Vegan leather".

No, vegan leather does not mean the product you are buying is eco-friendly nor earth-friendly. Vegan leather (unless it is made from pineapples, apples, bananas, mushrooms, natural tree rubber, cork or any other natural material that is biodegradable) is usually made of PVC, polyurethane and textile-polymer composite microfibres. In plain English: plastic, petroleum and lots of CO2 emissions! Please don’t panic nor blame yourself if you’ve bought “vegan leather” products. I’m sure you did it with animals and nature in mind. I know I did! Messing up and learning are both part of life, guys. The important thing is what we do with the new lessons and knowledge the universe is sending our way! If you have a closet full of “vegan leather” (aka plastic) products, REUSE them. Many times. Until they break. And then, get them fixed and keep using them! And, when you go shopping, read labels. Ask about the products you are purchasing and wearing. Where do they come from. What’s their story. What are they made of. If you are still willing to buy plastic shoes, choose brands that make shoes from recycled plastic and support their practices of reducing waste, water and CO2 emissions.

Other labels or words to look for:

1) Ethical or fair-trade: Does the brand or product have our planet and people in mind? This means that the hands that made your product were paid a fair wage and provided with humane and healthy working conditions, health insurance, and fair opportunities. (Watch "The True Cost" film to learn more)

2) Sustainably sourced: In fashion, this usually applies to fibers. Organic cotton, bamboo, soy, peace silk. This label tells us these raw materials were harvested and processed in a sustainable way. Another label you may see is “Rainforest Alliance Certified”. This means the company making the products was audited and granted this seal because of their eco-friendly and fair-trade practices and their efforts to protect people and our rainforests, reducing our global deforestation crisis.

3) Non-toxic: This applies to the dyes used to make your colorful t-shirt, skirt, jean, dress, etc. Always look for plant-based alternatives. In other words, products that have been dyed with colors made from plants, flowers, clay, and other natural materials. Aka: non-toxic to our earth AND your health! (Whatever you put on your skin is absorbed by your body, travels through your blood system and feeds your cells!) “RoHs certified” also falls within this category, and means the colors used did not contain any hazardous nor harmful substances.

4) Cruelty-free: This means no animals were harmed in the process of making the product. No fur, no leather, no animal torture. 

These are just a few labels and very important ones. I’ll keep sharing more with you in my next posts, always making sure I don’t give you an information overload or freak you guys out. It’s all in the daily baby steps. Remember that!

Ps: Two sustainable shoe brands I adore are Verdura Shoes and Z Shoes Organic. 

Verdura shoes are made from recycled fishing nets, natural cork and plant based dyes. They are also fair-trade and handmade in Italy. I have their beige booties and LOVED.

Z Shoes Organic sneakers are comfy, fair-trade and made with natural and renewable rubber (extracted from Amazonian trees by making tiny cuts to their outer layers. No killing trees here!) for the shoes’ soles, and organic cotton fabric dyed with plantbased colors. No plastic here AT ALL!  To get your Z Shoes Organic, use code “waterthruskin” for $10 off! 

Go-getter Friday Ethical Look

Here's another look I've been dying to share with you, and another example that dressing with- and supporting- eco-friendly and ethical brands is easier than we think! Remember that we, as consumers, have a great power. WE get to set the demand and, with every dollar we spend, we get to shape the way companies do business. That simple. Our purchasing power can make a difference if we choose to shop consciously and support the right brands!

Dress by StormieDreams: Fair-trade, eco, and made with reclaimed fabrics gathered from large companies that would have discarded them. Also, all unsold designs get cut into children's clothing and donated to nonprofits Stormie Dream works with! Use code wtrthrskn20 for discount.

Vegan Glads by FreePeople: FREE PEOPLE! Yes, Free People has partnered with Peta to come up with vegan designs that are to die for! Go check them out!

Basket Bag by VeganResortWear: Handmade, fair-trade and made with vegan leather straps. 

Earrings by MP Jewelry: Fair-trade and handmade by women in Colombia. It is the perfect combination of Colombian and Indian traditions. It is also a 2-1 earring set with emerald studs!

Sustainable Bohemian Style

As you guys may have already seen on my Instagram feed or my blog, I'm all about that bohemian vibe! Like... if I could walk barefoot 24/7, I would be that happiest soul alive. Seriously! But, I'm also a social entrepreneur who is always on the go, which is the perfect opportunity for me to find ethical bohemian brands and give them with a "ready for everything" twist. This look is probably one of my all-time favorites. Eco-friendly, vegan, fair-trade, charity-oriented and sustainable. Doing good is as easy as choosing the brands you shop and support wisely! 

Skirt by Stormie Dreams: This is a sustainable maxi skirt made with reclaimed fabrics gathered from large companies that would have discarded them. Also, all designs that don't sell get cut into children's clothing and donated to nonprofits Stormie Dream works with! I have this skirt in black and peach, and love them! Light, eco, fair-trade, comfortable, sexy and beautiful. Use code wtrthrskn20 for discount.

Vegan Leather Gladiators: I've had these babies for over 3 years now and keep rocking them as if they were new. They are made with vegan leather by....wait for it.... FREE PEOPLE! Yes, Free People is coming up with vegan designs that are to die for! Go check them out!

Vegan Leather Backpack by OceansEnd: Designed in Hawaii and made with vegan leather. I received this backpack a few days ago and have been wearing it every single day! It is light, kind, ethical, gorgeous, and big enough to carry my daily essentials!

Crystal Necklaces by Joanne Stone: Besides ethical and sustainable fashion, crystals are another passion of mine, and there's nothing that makes me happier than being able to carry them 24/7 as jewels! For this look, I layered three different necklaces made by Joanne stone with raw crystals, gold, and a cotton cord. I'm wearing the following crystals with their healing purposes:

1) mini-kunzite: awakens the heart to unconditional love. Encourages self-expression and creativity, and has the power to connect intuition, intellect and inspiration. 

2) light smokey quartz: relieves stress and negative emotions, and promotes pragmatic thoughts.

 3) clear quartz point: most powerful healer and energy amplifier. It cleanses the soul deeply and protects from negative energy. 

Conscious Bohemian. Always!

A month ago I had the opportunity to be part of the most beautiful event planning photoshoot I’ve seen in these 28 years of mine. A natural, eco-friendly, bohemian scene taken out of one of my dreams and I, of course, got to dress like a bohemian princess for it! You guys can read the entire story here, or scroll below to read about the conscious fashion brands I wore. xo

Dress and Mala by MettaLovingKindness: Fair-trade and handmade by artisans in India. Each purchase helps empower artisans worldwide and supports different charities Metta works with. If you live in Miami, visit their store in Key Biscayne! 

Gladiator sandals by ByBlanch: vegan and eco-friendly leather. Ethical and handmade in Spain. I adore these sandals. They are so easy to style!

Boho silver bracelets by Pugoka: Ethical and handmade in Bolivia. Empowers Bolivian artisans and supports different charities. I'm obsessed with their bright colors! 

Boho necklace by Yvera: Ethical and handmade in Bolivia.