Fall is right around the corner and that means two things, cozy vegan sweaters and seasonal vegan Starbucks drinks!
Now let’s be honest, one of the most exciting things about the changing of seasons is that you get to swap one wardrobe for another. I don’t know about you but usually mid-way through summer, I’m ready to pull out my boots and an oversized vegan sweater!
Luckily, each year brings about more and more vegan and cruelty-free clothing options. That's why I’m super excited to share my top picks with you.
Below I’ve included several vegan sweater brands as well as other vegan-friendly retailers. Many of these companies are eco-friendly and fair trade which is something I try to support as much as possible.
Now, what you'll find they all have in common is that they all have a large collection of vegan knits for women, and some brands carry a few sweaters for men as well.
But before we begin, let's take a quick look at why you should avoid animal-based materials.
Materials to Avoid When Shopping For Vegan Sweaters:
When shopping for vegan sweaters this fall, you should steer clear of the following fabrics.
Sadly, the wool industry is one of the cruelest thanks to the horrendous shearing and mulesing process sheep must endure. After a lifetime of abuse and mutilation, sheep are shipped as live exports to the Middle East and North Africa. Many don’t even make the journey due to extreme temperatures and overcrowding. Once they arrive, the sheep are slaughtered in ways that are illegal in the Western world.
Even though cashmere wool is known as one of the most luxurious materials in the world for sweaters, it also represents a horrible industry that you don't want to support. Cashmere goats suffer terribly in China and Mongolia for their soft undercoats. Instead, choose from one of the several vegan versions of cashmere and merino wool below.
Although you might not associate silk as a material used for sweaters, you'd be surprised how much it is used especially in cashmere sweaters. According to PETA, as many as 3,000 silk worms have to be killed to make one pound of silk. That being said, satin, which is very similar to silk, is almost always vegan and a good substitute.
Angora is a type of wool made from the fur of rabbits. The angora industry is well-known for it's cruelty and disregard of animal welfare. Similar to any non-vegan wool, you should stay clear of anything made with angora.
Although alpaca wool has been touted as being “cruelty-free,” I wouldn’t count on it. In fact, would argue that anytime animals are used for a profit, there will be exploitation. Alpacas are bred purely for their fleece, and come winter time, many of them, especially baby alpacas, freeze to death.
The Best Brands For Vegan Sweaters and Knits For Fall/Winter 2020
Petit Vour is my go-to for online cruelty-free shopping. I first found them thanks to their amazing monthly beauty box subscription but have since fallen in love with their huge selection ranging from vegan skincare and makeup to accessories, clothing, and home goods. Everything on Petit Vour is 100% vegan and they only feature ethical brands so you can shop with confidence.
If you're looking for a great variety of vegan sweaters, there is no shortage. Petit Vour features a variety of knits from several brands with styles including oversized and lace-up to gorgeous designs with floral prints.
And while you're at it, don't forget to scope out their stylish selection of vegan boots and booties to complete your fall and winter wardrobe.
Image credit: Petit Vour
Lulus is a favorite retailer among many vegans and non-vegans alike. And although they carry some wool and leather, Lulus truly makes an effort to cater to vegans and has an entire section dedicated to vegan shoes, clothing, and handbags.
They design most of their own clothing and even have a Made in the USA section. Nevertheless, you can also find several exclusive brands on their site.
There are currently well over 100 sweaters listed on Lulus, most of which are vegan-friendly, and that is not counting all the blouses and other tops they offer. Moreover, I expect to see the collection grow as fall and winter creeps closer. In other words, there are plenty of options for everyone.
But what I really like about Lulus wide range of vegan knits is that there is a ton of colorful and fun patterns which is a nice change from the neutral colors you typically find. All things considered, Lulus is a great and affordable place to shop for vegan fashion!
Image credit: Petit Vour
Groceries Apparel is one of my favorite vegan clothing brands, and for good reason. This all-vegan company manufactures all of their clothing in their own factory in Los Angeles, CA factory under fair trade conditions.
I’ve always been impressed by the high standard they uphold for their clothing. The best part is that they're conscious about what materials they use. For example, they only use non-toxic vegetable dyes, organic cotton, eucalyptus and hemp, and even recycled cotton and plastic.
Their collection of eco-friendly vegan sweaters is varied with models for both men and women. Here you’ll find oversized comfy sweaters, turtlenecks, stylish vegan cardigans, and everything in between.
It's great to see Groceries Apparel offering vegan sweater options for men as well since it's harder to find. But guys, you'll love their super soft organic cotton Alameda Sweater, I promise!
Image credit: Groceries Apparel
Land’s End is a popular brand that you might already be familiar with. We’ve mentioned them before in our review of vegan winter coats. Although Land's End is not completely vegan, they offer a large selection of animal-free clothing ranging from jackets and shoes to swimwear and high-quality vegan sweaters for both men and women.
Their collection is designed to be as stylish as it is practical. That means most of their cruelty-free sweaters are made from 100% combed cotton that helps keep you warm and comfortable all day long. Also, the sweaters literally come in almost any color you can imagine which means the hardest part is deciding which color to buy!
Moreover, one of the most popular vegan men’s sweater is the Bedford Rib Quarter Zip Sweater which is extremely versatile and works just as well in the office as it does out on a hike.
Image credit: Land's End
I’ve loved Will’s Vegan Shoes for forever and practically live in their vegan work boots. Adam also has a pair of Chelsea Boots from them that he loves.
Not only is Will’s an all-vegan company, but everything is fair trade and sustainable. In fact, the brand is entirely carbon neutral! So when I found out that they started to make vegan sweaters, I got overly excited.
Unsurprisingly, their vegan knits are of the same high quality that Will’s footwear is known for, and there are several classic designs available for both women and men.
What’s impressive is that Will’s has managed to create their own versions of vegan wool, vegan merino wool, and vegan cashmere. In turn, this means that their tops are as soft and warm as the sweaters you’re used to.
Also, their new collection of sweatersare handcrafted in a small family-owned factory in Tuscany, Italy so you know the quality is always spot on.
Image credit: Will's Vegan Shoes
Nois New York is another online all-vegan fashion retailer that collaborates with several high-end, cruelty-free brands. I've actually only found about Nois recently but I'm so excited to share this brand with you.
Their whole concept is built on the notion that fashion and veganism are not mutually exclusive and Nois has vowed:
"that every piece we stock is carefully selected to be free of silk, animal skin, fur, and hair. Nois focuses on vegan brands as well as sustainable and emerging designers to curate pieces that are thoughtfully designed and always relevant."
Nois offers a contemporary collection of clothing for women, and in terms of vegan sweaters, you'll be spoiled for choice. Their selection of vegan knits come in so many chic styles from cute sweater dresses to turtlenecks and chunky sweaters.
Image credit: Nois New York
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