Question: How and why was Unicorn Goods born?
Answer: Unicorn Goods is a Public Benefit Corporation with a mission to reduce animal suffering by selling and promoting animal-free products. Unicorn Goods began as Good Goods in December 2014, and was officially incorporated in March 2016. The idea for Unicorn Goods came from its cofounders, CEO Cayla Mackey and CCO Dave Pittman. Cayla spent six months trying to find a pair of vegan shoes that were simple enough to be worn with many different outfits, and high quality enough to last years. She called brands and manufacturers, shipped back items that claimed to be vegan but actually contained leather, pursued vegan blogs, and spent hours on the phone with customer service representatives. She kept a spreadsheet of the information she found, and that spreadsheet became the first iteration of what would become Unicorn Goods. She did find the shoes she was looking for, vegan Doc Martens and Olsenhaus Babylon flats.
Question: What are your beliefs and your commitments around ethics and ecology?
: We believe that animals are not ours to use for food, clothing, or other purposes. We are committed to reducing the consumption of animals, specifically related to clothing, and helping people bridge the gap between food and fashion. We devote our time to promoting vegan clothing because we want vegans to know that dressing with vegan clothes is not only possible, but can be just as fun as shopping for non-vegan clothes. Animal products are bad for people, bad for the planet, and bad for animals.
Wearing animals is part of animal agriculture. For example, skin is 25% of the material produced from raising a livestock animal such as a cow, pig, or sheep; skin is made into leather and sold for profit. Whether you're eating animals or wearing them, you are supporting animal agriculture and animal exploitation. Someone who wears leather, fur, wool, down, or silk cannot call themselves an environmentalist without divorcing that word from its meaning. The livestock sector is responsible for 18% of greenhouse gas emissions, around 40% more than the entire transport sector (cars, trucks, trains, planes, and ships) combined. Animal agriculture is responsible for 51% of anthropogenic methane, which offers 23x the global warming potential (GWP) of CO2, as well as 65% of anthropogenic nitrous oxide, which provides 296x the GWP of CO2. (Cowspiracy, United Nations & Pew Commission). For more information about out standards, read our Standards page.
Question: What types of products do you list on Unicorn Goods?
Answer: Unicorn Goods is the world's largest collection of vegan products. Unicorn Goods lists over 2,000 items from over 250 brands, including vegan clothing, shoes, coats, accessories, bags, cruelty-free makeup, cookbooks & literature, gear, and supplies.
Question: What are you plans for the future?
Answer: Unicorn Goods is already the world's largest vegan catalog. Our plans are to be the premier destination for vegan clothing, and the first place people go to for all things vegan. We plan on launching our own items at some point in the future to fill gaps in the market, making things that are hard to find vegan.
Question: As a consumer, it is quite difficult to find information about vegan fashion. As a participant, what is your awareness about this market in terms of existing brands and materials?
Answer: Vegans and vegetarians account for 6% of the global online retail market. In the United States along, the number of vegans and vegetarians has double in the past three years. Vegan online shopping is a growing $15 billion industry. The problem with the vegan fashion market is that it's fragmented. It's difficult for vegans to easily shop because vegan items aren't all in one place. That's the problem we're solving with Unicorn Goods. We are a research-based company. We do our best to make sure that everything that goes on the site is. By consolidating the demand for vegan clothing, we are driving market demand for vegan clothing, and making vegan clothes more common and accessible. We support the efforts of technology companies and startups that are looking for superior synthetic alternatives to animal-based products, like Modern Meadow, Spiber, and Opificio V.
Question: What products other than clothing do you see being made from vegan leather?
Answer: We are excited to see more and more companies using vegan leather. For example, Tesla's model X is upholstered in vegan leather. As vegan leather continues to become more technologically advanced, and as prices for vegan leather continue to drop, we expect to see vegan leather overtake animal leather as a superior material for clothing and other products. Some examples of items we list from vegan leather include furniture, exercise equipment like baseball gloves & baseballs, and dog accessories & leashes. Vegan leather is better for people, animals, and the planet.
Question: You are quite active on social media. Is communication about vegan clothing important to you?
Answer: Communication about veganism in general is important to us. It's all of our responsibility to educate the public about the consequences of buying animal products. Unicorn Goods exists to meet the needs of people who have decided to stop buying animal-based clothing, but we are also a resource for people who are open to learning more about the consequences of buying animal products.
Question: Why is Unicorn Goods is a PETA-Approved Vegan vendor, and what does that mean?
Answer: Unicorn Goods has been a PETA-Approved Vegan vendor since we launched in December 2014. Being a PETA-Approved Vegan vendor is important to us, because it provides our customers transparency about where we stand when it comes to animal products. As a PETA-Approved Vegan vendor, we are obligated to refrain from listing items on our site that knowingly contain animal products.
Question: What difficulties has Unicorn Goods encountered?
Answer: As a startup with a small staff, Unicorn Goods works every day to have the greatest possible impact that requires the fewest resources. We are constantly working to stay on top of the hundreds of great brands and vegan products that get released every day, and we list as many of them as possible. We are here to meet the rapidly-growing demand for vegan products.
Question: What are some of your favorite brands, including brands that you don’t yet list?
Answer: Our favorite brands are brands that have made a commitment to being 100% vegan. These brands are marked with a V under Brands. We continue to discover new brands every day and list them on Unicorn Goods, with a focus on 100% vegan brands.
Question: What is the next big step for vegan fashion? How should it evolve?
Answer: The mainstream fashion industry needs to respond to the growing demand for vegan products. More and more people are demanding products that don't use animals, not as a fleeting fad or trend, but as part of a lifelong lifestyle decision that is sweeping the globe. Veganism is here to stay, and the vegan consumer industry will continue to grow. The fashion industry will either evolve or die as we know it.