Three (or maybe more???) years ago, I splashed out $19 for a slightly hideous fake leopard fur coat that was on super clearance at Forever 21 due to all the buttons being missing. I had some vague idea I'd replace them with some awesome vintage ones, but of course I never did -- so I've just been wearing it flapping open this whole time. No matter, it's still crazy cool:
This coat was a half-hearted attempt at replacing a truly glorious, glossy faux leopard fur coat I scored while working for Todd Oldham in the 1990s, which I wore until it was totally and completely threadbare. (I'm talking bald spots in the fur and holes in the lining big enough to put your fist through.) I held on to that coat as long as I possibly could -- and cried big fat tears as I threw it away, because working for Todd was like living in a dream world. We had dance parties in the shop almost every single day, and must have burned through at least $10,000 worth of film while taking the original selfies: Polaroids!
Whenever he happened to be in town and working at the store, Todd would do hilarious stuff like draw perfect tiger stripes on staff members and their dogs -- and we constantly played dress-up with his amazing clothes. I wore many, many ensembles that foxy ladies such as Amber, Linda, and Cindy had previously modeled.
Our little store on Beverly Boulevard in Los Angeles saw lots of laughter and just as much crying. We weathered endless breakups and makeups together, hosted at least a dozen rescued chihuahuas, witnessed a birth and even spawned a wedding, which I somehow ended up making the cake for. Todd is the one who introduced me to the greatness of "Grey Gardens," the film that taught me it was okay -- cool even, to be an eccentric ol' broad. It was a blissful time in my life that kind of died forever with the death of that leopard coat.
Anyway, this wasn't meant to be a trip down memory lane -- it's supposed to be a roundup of the very best faux-fur coats a girl can buy at every single price point. But if you're looking to score one, don't dawdle! Because by the time it's actually cold enough to rock these coats, they'll be long gone from the stores. Once Thanksgiving rolls around, it's almost impossible to find a fake fur that's worth buying (unless it happens to be missing every single button.) So be sure to strike while the iron -- and the weather -- is still hot. Whatever you want to spend, there's a fake fur out there with your name on it.
COATS UNDER $50 FOR BUDGET BABES
EVEN MORE COATS, $130 AND UNDER
$150+ COATS FOR BIG BAD BALLERS
The only problem with faux fur coats is that they are almost impossible to clean yourself, so it's dry cleaner or bust. Sure, you COULD wash them at home in the washing machine, but you're likely going to wind up with a terribly matted mess. To stretch the time between professional cleanings, I suggest just spot cleaning them using a baby wipe (like my beloved Wet Ones.)
But if your coat is really grimy, you can absorb any oil, dirt or grime by sprinkling a healthy amount of dry, ground cornmeal onto the soiled areas, working it into the fabric well and allowing it to sit for several hours, taking it outdoors and shaking vigorously to remove any excess. Then brush your coat carefully with a slicker brush (like the kind you use to groom your cats!) to fluff up matted areas and remove any lingering cornmeal. Wait, why are you still here reading this? Go grab yourself a fake fur before they're all gone!
I'm on Twitter: @IveyAlison