Basically a work explicitly states that a character is wearing fake fur, to avoid upsetting any anti-fur viewers.
The main reason for this is having the glamour of fur without any of the guilt (or angry letters).
Note that simply wearing fake fur isn't enough, since that could just be for budget reasons. This requires the show clearly stating it In-Universe in some way.
In Real Life, some people claim some vintage furs they have are fake, to avoid harassment. Conversely, it is also possible to buy clothes containing real fur claiming to be faux fur, since farming certain types of animals for fur can actually be cheaper than synthetic materials. There has also been backlash against fake fur because it's a type of plastic, which has led to debates on whether it's truly better for the animals and environment. Maybe the safest choice is to just avoid both variations altogether if possible.
Compare Fur and Loathing.
Contrast Cruella to Animals.
Compare/Contrast Live Mink Coat (fur is real, but still no animals harmed).
- Although Veronica of Archie Comics wears fur a lot, often, when she says what fur it is, it's fake. This was also put in reprints of older stories, editing the older text.
- In one story, Archie dreams about a Bad Future where the planet has been environmentally and ecologically devastated by unchecked pollution and waste. When he runs into Veronica, she's gushing about a new fake leopard fur coat she just bought. Archie expresses surprise that Veronica would brag about wearing fake fur, but she replies that of course it's fake, since in that world, leopards went extinct decades ago.
- In a Josie and the Pussycats comic, Melody gets upset when Josie wears an outfit with a fur collar. Josie tells her that it's orlon, but Melody being Melody protests that cute little orlons shouldn't be killed for their fur.
- A very odd version occurs in the comic Chaminou by Raymond Macherot. It takes place in a World of Funny Animals, where it used to be the case long, long ago that some of them ate each other. A legendary king outlawed the practice however, and in a flashback we see him in a traditional royal outfit. A note points out that his cape was made of fake ermine - that is, he wasn't a hypocrite.
- Clash's bio from Jem and the Holograms states she loves faux fur.
- An episode of White Collar mentioned that the furs being bought were fake◊.
- In Something So Right, the male lead's ex-wife shows up wearing a fur coat, and the first time she says, "Don't worry. It's fake fur." He replied, "I don't think anyone's staring at the fur."
- When Castle's mother went on a shopping spree, she said the leopard print coat she got was fake.
- During a Comic Relief special, Fran Drescher showed up with a rack of furs. She held a black one, saying "It's fake, but you wouldn't believe what I had to fake to get it."
- In Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Salem has a huge gambling debt to a guy (who later turned out to be a cheater), and the Spellmans are forced to work for him to pay it off. At his gambling hall, we see women wearing fur wraps. The furs are later stated to be fake when the Spellmans try to make a potion, and a hair from a fake fur is an ingredient.
- In the Penn & Teller: Bullshit! episode on PETA, they make it clear that they have nothing but contempt for this trope, and consider it to be hypocrisy in its purest form. They point out while interviewing a PETA spokesman that he's wearing a (fake, they assume to give him the benefit of the doubt) leather belt, shoes and watchband, thus propagating the fashion even though his outfit didn't directly murder any animals.
- In The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, London, acting as an animal-loving celebrity, attracts the rage of a local animal rights group after Maddie lets it slip to a reporter that London has "fox furs" in her wardrobe. It is later revealed that it was a misunderstanding; London's furs are fake but she thinks that "faux" (which rhymes dough) is pronounced fox.
- In Special Unit 2, Nick and Kate have to talk to a creature that's kept prisoner in an icy room. Carl the gnome gives Kate a fur coat to keep her warm, and says it's fake, but because he stole it and would not count as severe a theft.
- In the live action part of The Super Mario Bros Super Show!, the brothers think they've struck it rich, and Luigi mentions he always wanted to buy his mother a fake fur coat.
- Children of the Lamp: When Philipa conjures up a fur coat for herself in The Five Fakirs, she makes sure to make it out of fake fur. She later finds out that her uncle Nimrod also conjured up a fur coat for himself - except with real fur. He says he isn't bothered by it, since it's not like any animals died to make that coat.
- Avalon: Web of Magic: When Kara is going on her magical shopping spree, she checks to make sure that the fur on the piece of clothing she wants is fake. She's assured that it is.
- Barenaked Ladies "If I Had a Million Dollars":
(If I had a million dollars)Well, I'd buy you a fur coat(But not a real fur coat; that's cruel)
- Parodied later with "I would buy you a green dress (but not a real green dress, that's cruel)".
- The video for Deee-Lite's "Groove Is In The Heart" reassures viewers that Lady Miss Kier is wearing fake fur.
- In the last couple of decades, most Barbie outfits have stated on the box that the fur is fake.
- This also has purpose of not getting sued from customers who would have actually wanted real fur, and claim to be scammed when it turned out to be cheaper synthetic. Whether it's to appeal to changing sensibilities and general feelings regarding animal rights, or to cover them from lawsuits, is unclear, and it could easily be a convenient way to do both.
- The Sims 2 "Glamour Life" set offered a fur coat, but stated that the furs weren't real, even in the game.
- In Strong Bad's Cool Game for Attractive People Episode 3, Marzipan admits she once bought a coat thinking it was made of faux fur before she learned it was made of Faux-faux fur, the furs of Faux-fauxs.
- Parodied viciously in Team Fortress 2. One of the cosmetic items is a fur-lined lab coat for The Medic, and the description boasts that endangered species were killed in the making of it. Even though it boasts synthetic fur.
- Last Res0rt: One of Jigsaw's early outfits is lined with very fake, very lime green fur.
- Megatokyo spoofs this. When Seraphim shows different outfits from around the world the Russian outfit is a fur coat, hat, and muff (the fur even wraps around her wings), and she is really worried it might not be fake fur.
- The Rant for one strip in Knights of Buena Vista says that if the reader prefers, they can tell themselves Mary owns a bunch of fake furs instead of real furs.
- Penny and Aggie: On a related note, Aggie is giving fashion advice and says that wearing leather is wrong, but that wearing pleather - which looks and feels exactly like leather - is fine.
- When the website for the British paper Daily Mail post pictures of celebrities wearing fur, about 2/3 of the mentions state that the fur is fake (even though some are real, but might have fooled the writers).
- Viewers of the Miss Universe and Miss USA pageants may remember host and devout animal rights activist Bob Barker's threatened resignation in 1987 over a decision for contestants to wear real fur jackets over bathing suits. He managed to talk them into using fake fur instead, and announced "All the ladies are wearing simulated fur!" (standing ovation) However, he was never able to stop them from giving a real fur coat to the winner, and stepped down permanently in '88 over that.
- In January 2019, it emerged in Britain that there is a trading standards issue concerning real fur being mis-sold, advertised as fake fur. Lawmakers are in a debate as to whether this is legal or ethical, or not.