1. Waterproof, Vegan Hiking Boots by Will's Vegan Shoes
As a hiker, who happens to be vegan, it can be quite the challenge to find a pair of vegan hiking boots. For me, I prefer to buy shoes in person vs. online; I can try them on and make sure they fit right, before I commit to making a purchase. Luckily, Portland's own Herbivore Clothing Company is now carrying vegan shoes (omg!), and hiking boots are included!
As of this writing, I've taken my pair of Will's Waterproof Hiking Boots ($142) out on three adventures: Latourell Falls in the Columbia Gorge; Tom, Dick, and Harry in the Mount Hood National Forest; Tryon State Park in Southwest Portland. These boots are lightweight, have great traction, and have I mentioned that they’re waterproof? Other than needing to be break them in a tad more, there's nothing stopping me from saying that I am in love with them.
(Side note: I usually wear between a 9–10 in a women’s US size, and I got these in a 10. It mostly gives my toes enough room from reaching the tips of the boot while descending.)
2. A La Nude Nail Polish by Ella & Mila
For quite some time, I've been looking for a pink-side-of-the-nude colored nail polish that was vegan and cruelty-free. Behold, A La Nude ($10.50) made its way into my life, and all was right with my (small and limited) nail polish world. I would describe A La Nude as classy, refined, and subtle.
I remember being surprised by how well it held up over a handful of days without chipping! I'm sure it would have lasted much longer if I didn't tackle some deep-cleaning at home.
(Side note: Looking for other fun, vegan, cruelty-free colors? Check out Ella & Mila's color list!)
3. Jesse Wallet in Black by Matt & Nat
After making the unintentional switch to a smaller purse, it would only be a matter of time before I figured out that throwing my punch cards, debit and credit card, AAA card, bus pass, and driver’s license into a side pocket wouldn't do. They had the potential to fall out at any moment!
When I came across the small Jesse wallet ($45), I knew it was the perfect match. Now my tiny purse is much more organized, safe, and fashionable!
(Side note: Want a pop of color to brighten up your style? Jesse also comes in other colors, like shine!)
4. Meat Never, Plants Forever Zip-Up Hoodie by Herbivore Clothing Company
Our Portland summer had been abnormally hot. (Global warming, anyone?) But that didn't stop me from snagging a unisex Meat Never, Plants Forever zip-up hoodie ($55) from Herbivore Clothing Co.
As a taller lady, with lanky arms, I tend to have a soft-spot for sleeves that reach mid-finger length. There's something about it that is oh-so-cozy and feels oh-so-right.
Since the hoodie is made up of 50% poly, 25% airlume combed and ring-spun cotton, and 25% rayon, it doesn't shrink!
5. Bacony Chipotle Cheese Spread by Nu Culture
If I could go back in time to discover something sooner, it would be this tasty af cashew spread. A few months ago, Waz Wu (@wazwu__) of Veganizer PDX, posted to her instagram stories about how amazing these spreads were and was continuously recommending them!
One day, when I was standing in front of the refrigerated section at Food Fight, I saw these suckers staring at me, reminding me that I wanted to give them a shot. I picked up the Bacony Chipotle spread ($6.75)—as well as a few other snacks—and headed home.
Upon setting my vegan bounty on the kitchen counter, I immediately opened the container and eagerly dipped multiple tortilla chips into this heavenly dip—I knew my life was instantly changed when I had consumed the entire container!
Don't wait longer than I did! I highly recommend going out to snag yourself a tub of this blissful, savory cheese dip—like, five minutes ago.
(Side note: Not much of a spicy heat person? Try Nu Culture's Garden Herb spread!)