How do you stay warm without down?

As a vegan who doesn’t have a huge amount of vegan friends, I get this question a lot this time of year. The cold months are nearly upon us and it’s just about time to break out those winter coats. But, how can you possibly stay warm AND compassionate at the same time? Fear not, for I have some suggestions!

I have been a vegan for quite some time, but I have hated down for even longer. I hate down coats, I hate down comforters and pillows. It’s not just because of the sad images that come to mind when I think of where the feathers come from. I also just hate the sensation of being stabbed all over my body. Wearing a down coat makes me feel like I am being attacked all over by very small creatures with itty bitty spears. I also hate down because it’s a huge hassle to clean. I like to be able to throw my coats in the wash and not have to cart them to a dry cleaner.

There are a ton of options out there, you just have to look! I personally have a very nice insulated North Face coat that I have been wearing for about three years. It covers me from about head to mid thigh. I can wear it when the cold wind starts to blow in late fall and I have worn it in -30(ish) degree temperatures and felt warm and cozy in all the places that this coat covered me. From quick dashes to the store to waiting for a late bus for 30 minutes, to going sledding on the coldest day of the year, I have never regretted purchasing this coat. And my coat is not some sort of wondercoat, it is one of many different varieties of down-less winter coats. Most companies that make down coats make many fashionable alternatives. Your favorite vegan friendly coat is out there waiting for you. Some alternatives include a removable lining made of fleece or polyester. Coats made with Gore-Tex are particularly good at combating the cold as well. Columbia makes coats with a reflective inner lining to keep your body heat inside. Patagonia makes insulated layers that fold up into their own pockets that you can stash away to pump up your coats on the extra cold days.

Now that you know what’s out there, put your vegan shopping shoes on and go buy yourself something that will keep your body and heart warm! And if you see any geese outside on their way to warmer climates, tip your synthetic blend, non-wool hat to your fine feathered friends and say “You’re welcome”

Here are few ideas to get your search started:

Columbia – Women’s Zenith Vista™ Jacket

Columbia – Women’s Powder People™ Parka

Columbia – Men’s Glacier to Glade™ II Parka

Patagonia – Patagonia Women’s Nano Puff® Jacket

The North Face – Men’s Madplaid Triclimate® Jacket

The North Face – Women’s Pixey Triclimate® Jacket

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Kady was born many years ago in a small town, in a place, to some people. Her parents were omnivorous health food nuts. At the tender age of ten Kady found out meat was in fact made from all those cute farm animals and decided to become a vegetarian. She sat her parents down and gave them the news, which they received gracefully. Four years passed and she became four years wiser and decided to be a vegan. She sat her parents down and gave them the news. This family meeting erupted into a huge argument that resulted in her father pouring her a glass of milk and yelling "You need to drink milk!" It has been eight years since that day and both her mother and her father are vegans. Kady now lives in Rogers Park with her boyfriend and 3 huge orange cats. Kady enjoys doom metal, taking pictures with her fancy-ass camera and eating her father's cooking. Kady hasn't taken any nice college classes on writing, but feels that being an opinionated bitch qualifies her to write a vegan column for a vegan blog.

3 Responses to “Keeping Warm without the Feathers” Subscribe

  1. Yoav Kashiv at #

    And what do you recommend for warm vegan blanket/comforter?

    I tried many things since becoming vegan 15 years ago and nothing was warm enough…

    • Kady Walker at #

      Personally, I just add layers. I have one blanket with some sort of synthetic filling which I put a duvet cover on. Since I keep my bedroom as cold as I can stand it, the cover is usually cold once I get to bed so I use a small fleece or bamboo blanket underneath that. The softer the blanket the warmer it feels right away and I am usually more than warm and cozy enough with that combination. If you have the time and patience to sort of prep your bed before you go to sleep (maybe more during the colder seasons), you can place a heating pad under your blanket on the side of the bed you sleep on for a little while before you go to sleep. I would also look into camping blankets, they might not be as pretty as regular blankets, but they could be dressed up with a nice duvet cover. You can also consider keeping your room warmer, or if you are super rich and you really just want to toast yourself overnight, you could invest in an electric blanket.

  2. gwen at #

    good advice, i find sharing my bed with three wonderful cats help to keep me snug as a bug all winter long, truly cruelty-free fur!

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