Style with a conscience

Top 5 Ethical Gym Wear

Vegan writer, animal rights advocate and K-9 Angels Charity founder Victoria Featherstone Pearce, reveals her top five luxury ethical gym wear.

It can be difficult to find items that offer glamour but are also cruelty-free and ethical. If you're a lover of luxury fashion like myself, you'll have experienced  the same struggles as I have, and this is the same case for gym wear. Getting back to a workout regimen can require heaps of inspiration and motivation - something that new gear can help with.

To give you a helping hand, I have rounded up five beautifully ethical gym wear pieces I've discovered on my own search for planet-friendly, luxury fashion. They will have you running, jumping and skipping your way through fitness sessions in no time!

For more from Victoria Featherstone Pearce, follow @victoriapearcewriter

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ADIDAS by Stella McCartney

Stella McCartney has long been synonymous with high fashion. In 2005 Stella collaborated with sports brand Adidas to design collection of high performance sportswear for women. Adidas by Stella McCartney follows the Better Place Program, which aims to guide and encourage the creation of more ethical gym wear, without compromising quality or performance.

The brand believes the systems we rely on to make, sell and dispose of clothing are fundamentally broken. Operated in a linear way, large amounts of non-renewable resources are continually extracted to produce the products we love, which largely end up going to landfill or incineration. We need to change the system by moving towards circular fashion and eliminating the concept of waste.

The future of fashion is circular, this means items will be restorative and regenerative by design and the clothes we love never end up as waste. Stella McCartney is making the circular economy a reality. This ethical gym wear may be a little pricey, but it's built to last and be worn for years to come.

True Purpose Seamless Leggings in granite, £89.95
True Purpose Seamless Tank Top, £62.95
stellamccartney.com › adidas

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Wolven

I'm absolutely loving this Boho chic gym brand attire that not only looks cool with sexy vibes, but it's made from recycled plastic bottles!

Did you know that a staggering 11.2 BILLION pounds of plastic make their way into our oceans each year? And if that isn't enough of a saddening statistic to comprehend, an estimated 14 billion pounds of garbage is dumped into the ocean annually, 80 per cent of which is a form of plastic that is killing marine life and damaging delicate ecosystems.

Since plastics are indestructible, it is vital that new ways are found to reuse them - Wolven are doing just that, giving plastic bottle a second life while substantially reducing carbon emissions.

Wolven use 27 recycled plastic bottles to produce one pair of their boho chic leggings. How cool is that?! Making ethical gym wear sexy and stylish.

Prices vary

wolventhreads.com

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VEJA

After seeing VEJA Vegan trainers on A-list actress and activist, Emma Watson, and then worn by worn by the well-known Meghan Markle, I had to see what all the fuss was about. And now I can totally understand why they quickly became one of the most talked-about trainer brands in the UK.

French sneaker brand VEJA isn't a vegan brand - out of their 81 styles of VEJA sneakers 20 styles are completely vegan. But I see this as a positive that a quarter of the brand's trainers are vegan. Looks-wise, you'd never know the difference between the vegan and non-vegan trainers, so do be mindful and select the vegan shoes when on the VEJA site.

Their vegan shoes are made from recycled materials proving vegan leather can be sustainable and ethical at the same time, by up-cycling corn waste to make its V-10 VEJA's vegan leather. Super stylish, ethical, comfy and no animals harmed for their ethical gym wear range brings VEJA into my top five for luxury ethical gym staples.

Condor Mesh Jaune Fluo Nautico Trainer, £130
www.veja-store.com

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Vegan Athlete Wear

I discovered Vegan Athlete Wear brand on Instagram a year ago when their super cute slogan leggings caught my eye, with 'Plant-based booty' and 'Vegan Booty' printed loudly on the back of them. Never one to shy away from saying it loudly, I ordered my first pair of plant-based booty leggings and since that day I've been a fan of this brand.

These 'Say It Loud' leggings from the USA are worth every penny. There is longish wait after you've placed an order as each pair needs to be made; each order takes between three-four weeks from order time to delivery, but you won't be disappointed.

I've worn my leggings over and over, especially during lockdown, and the quality of the material is fantastic - still clinging nicely in all the right places and not going baggy, like some less high-quality leggings can go. I'm now looking forward to receiving my 'Vegan Booty' Heart Core bottoms from this ethical gym wear brand and proudly spreading the vegan message.

Vegan booty leggings 'Say It Loud'
£49.80, veganathletewear.com

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Bamboo Clothing

I am loving this luxurious, yet practical and super comfortable fleecy hoodie in Orange Rust made from Bamboo. Yes, you read correctly, it's made from bamboo!

Bamboo clothing makes a positive difference to our planet in so many ways - I had no idea. Bamboo absorbs five times more carbon than hardwood trees. Not only that, two thirds of the carbon is stored in the soil and root system, which - unlike trees and cotton - isn't dug up when the bamboo is harvested, so the carbon stays in the ground.

Bamboo also releases 35 per cent more oxygen than its hardwood tree equivalent, helping clean the air we breathe. Plenty of reasons to give Bamboo clothing and their ethical gym wear a try if you haven't done so already!

Parford Bamboo Sports Sweat hoodie in Orange Rus, £59
bambooclothing.co.uk

DID YOU KNOW?

Fashion fact of the month

Currently less than one per cent of clothing is recycled into new clothing. This needs to change and fast. We need a circular fashion industry, which is defined as a regenerative system in which garments are circulated for as long as their maximum value is retained, and then returned safely to the biosphere when they are no longer of use. We need ethical gym wear.

VeganLife

The lifestyle magazine written by vegans for vegans.