Leaderboard Banner

Style On the Slopes: Mulesing-Free Wool

by Organic Spa Magazine

If anyone is an expert on what to wear on the ski slopes, it would be Kari Traa. Not only does she have ski cred—Traa is a former Olympic freestyle skier who won the Olympic title in the moguls event at the 2002 Winter Olympics, finished second at the 2006 games, and finished third at the 1998 games. She is also from Norway, where they do know a thing or two about the cold.

Traa launched her eponymous company (based in Norway) on two things: empowering women and girls to live an active and athletic lifestyle, and using sustainable fibers, starting with a base of super soft merino wool that is mulesing-free. Her colorful designs are bright and beautiful, plus they incorporate a bit of stretch, breathe well as natural fibers do, and they wick away moisture, to keep you warm and dry.

I spoke with Kari Traa, about what makes her company—and her commitment to taking a stand against animal cruelty—special.

RB: Why did you start your company? What is your vision, and how is it different from traditional clothing brands?

KT: I have always had an interest in handicraft and design. Some friends of mine were in the sport business, and, after winning the Olympic Gold medal in Salt Lake City in 2002, we decided to design some beanies. They sold out in the first season and the Kari Traa brand was born.

Our vision is to inspire girls to a happier, healthier and stronger lifestyle. Don’t take life too seriously. Have fun, be active and live life.

We are a girls-only brand, and there are very few feminine brands in the sporting business. The shape, the design, the colors are all made to inspire girls to a happier, healthier and stronger lifestyle.

Can you tell our readers what is mulesing-free wool?

Mulesing is a practice that is cruel and painful for the sheep. We therefore don’t want merino wool from sheep that have been exposed to this practice. Other humane alternatives exist, and we have taken a stand as a big buyer of wool to buy merino from sheep that hasn’t been exposed to mulesing.

Why is it important to you? Is it difficult to find?

No animal should suffer when being sheared when more human alternatives exist. We have not had any problems finding mulesing wool.

You also work with merino wool—what are the benefits?

1. Super soft. Merino wool has a soft and smooth texture – and is categorized by microns in terms of defining how fine the fiber is.

2. Breathable. Merino is a natural fiber with a unique structure that makes it absorb moisture and draw away excess heat

3. Naturally odor-resistant. Due to its natural properties merino creates a natural anti-bacterial effect

4. Regulates temperature. Merino is constantly monitoring and responding to changes in body temperature, providing excellent thermal insulation and helping your body stay in the “comfort zone”.

The base layers are great for winter, what do you feature for warmer weather?

We have a training line with great tank tops and running shorts. We have been awarded best in test on our running shorts.

We do also have some technical base layer that is thinner and perfect for warmer weather.

You may also like