‘Shear’ Cruelty: Why These Brands Don’t Use Wool

More and more brands are choosing not to use wool in light of the cruelty to animals and environmental damage inherent in wool production.

Cruelty to Sheep and Lambs

A PETA Asia eyewitness investigation of the Scottish wool industry documented that shearers punched terrified sheep in the face, slammed their heads into the floor, stamped and stood on their necks, and threw them off shearing trailers.

Other exposés by PETA affiliates of farms across England, Australia, the US, and South America have revealed that sheep are mutilated, tormented, and sometimes skinned alive – even for “responsibly sourced” wool on self-proclaimed “sustainable” farms.

Environmental Disaster

The wool industry also wreaks havoc on the environment: manure generated by farmed animals has significantly contributed to the increase in atmospheric greenhouse gases, large-scale grazing has led to vegetation change and soil erosion, and waterways have been polluted by faecal matter and the toxic chemicals used to rid sheep of parasites.

The groundbreaking “Pulse of the Fashion Industry” report ranked the production of sheep’s wool as more polluting – for cradle-to-gate environmental impact per kilogram – than that of acrylic, polyester, spandex, and rayon fibres.

Wool-Free and Proud

A growing number of fashion brands refuse to use the cruelly obtained material. Here are just a few of these ethical, sustainable companies:

  • Jakke

    Famous for its vibrant, on-trend faux furs, this PETA Fashion Award winner is now taking a stand against the cruelty of the wool industry by offering a range of colourful, super-soft knits completely free of any animal hair, some of which proudly proclaim, “Free From Wool”, making it easy – and stylish – to wear your values.

  • Miss Green

    After PETA informed Miss Green about shocking, systemic cruelty  in the wool industry and shared information about eco-friendly, non-animal yarns, the Dutch ethical fashion brand confirmed that it no longer produces items made with wool or any other animal-derived material.

  • Goat Organic Apparel

    Billions of animals are used for fashion every year, and Goat refuses to contribute to the industry’s body count. The company’s owners are both vegan and are proud to incorporate their love for animals into their business by making it sustainable and completely vegan. The result is quality clothing that’s ethically produced using 100% organic cotton.

  • Crop

    Crop has decided to leave all animal-derived materials out of its collections in favour of sustainable plant fibres. The brand experiments with a plethora of animal- and Earth-friendly yarns – even some derived from eucalyptus trees, banana branches, and orange peel – to create ethical clothing.

  • Nobody’s Child

    In order to avoid contributing to landfill waste, Nobody’s Child aims to make long-lasting clothes that customers can wear time and time again – and the brand’s environmental efforts don’t stop there. It’s also boosting its green credentials by shunning materials whose production has a toxic impact on the environment, which is why it’s wool-free.

  • Bleed

    Aware of the animal abuse and detrimental environmental consequences involved in producing wool, this sustainable German brand puts animals and the planet first by refusing to sell items made with the material. Instead, it uses thick, soft, knitted organic cotton – for all the warmth without any of the violence.

  • Reveye

    This “PETA-Approved Vegan” brand is dedicated to animal protection, refusing to use materials for which animals were skinned, electrocuted, plucked alive, or violently shorn – which is why it’s 100% vegan. Its collections feature great alternatives to fur, leather, feathers, wool, and silk, such as eco-friendly Polartec, Sympatex, Ingeo, and Stratermic materials.

    Black wool-free top


Pioneering companies are developing innovative materials to replace wool. Here are some examples of the exciting fabrics being created using renewable resources:

What You Can Do for Sheep and Lambs

There are numerous animal- and Earth-friendly vegan alternatives to wool available today – including the brands mentioned above.

Ditch wool in favour of these high-performing animal-free fibres, support the compassionate wool-free brands featured here, and urge boohoo to keep its promise to ban wool: