GUNAS, a well known vegan luxury accessory brand based in NY has a generally stellar reputation. By all accounts, they are cruelty-free, chic and accessible. I really wanted to love them and the Flamingo bag I got for my birthday last year. Like all of my reviews, this is relatively non-biased and factual.
The bag I got was the Flamingo. I was drawn to it for both the shape and color. Pink is my fave! Mine was actually a gift purchased at the Columbus Circle Holidays Shops, where they have a booth every year. I was super ecstatic because it seemed to hold a lot, have a top handle and adjustable crossbody strap and was to be my go-to bag.
It was great.. until I washed it. One cycle in the washing machine left the "faux leather" wrinkled and the shape compromised. It became apparent that what was holding the shape was a kind of malleable cardboard, which I felt through the faux leather. For a bag over $100 from a luxe brand, I expect more. The construction is poor, materials sub-par and the whole experience disappointing.
Some people don't wash their bags so they'll never run into this issue, but that's just gross. Matt and Nat's bags (I have a whole collection of them!) wash beautifully and come out looking like new. This is a testament to the quality of the materials and design.
It's heartbreaking I have to write this review of a brand I previously admired, but it's in your best interest to steer clear of GUNAS unless you never plan on getting your handbag wet or touched.
I'm not hard on my bags- I rarely put them down and don't step on them, throw them around or overstuff them to the point of not closing.
You can see the finishes aren't even well done. The glue is apparent and the seaming is a mess.
These aren't marks of an upscale luxe bag- they are the equivalent of a Walmart special. I think they're over-priced, over-celebrated and underwhelming. You never know how a bag will perform until you use it, and while I regret having my gift-giver spend so much money on something I'll never use again I'm glad to know I'll be sticking with Matt and Nat.