By now the damages that the fashion industry contributes to the environment are pretty well known. But in case you forgot, the fashion industry alone is responsible for about 8% of the greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere and has a carbon footprint that could rival the airline industry. Every year thousands of tons of materials that are used to make sneakers, shirts, and anything else we put on our backs are dumped into landfills and take years to decompose–if they do at all.
With this in mind, there have been plenty of fashion brands that are moving towards a more sustainable business model. They have attempted to do away with producing fast fashion and fought towards using more sustainable and environmentally conscious materials.
Their goals are simple, obviously to keep people stylish and feeling confident about what they are wearing, but also to ensure that they can do so guilt-free.
Thousand Fell utilizes sustainable and reusable ingredients all the way down to the packaging it arrives in at your doorstep. The simple lace-up and slip-on sneakers may look like leather, but they’re made with things like aloe vera mesh, coconut mesh, recycled plastic bottles, and more.
On top of being made out of sustainable materials once your shoes have served their purpose, you can return them to Thousand Fell where they will either be broken down to usable materials within their own supply chain, or they can be refurbished for someone in need of sneakers though their partnership with Soles4Souls
Threads 4 Thought has been in the sustainable fashion market since it’s founding in 2006, creating stylish, and casual activewear for men and women. While using recycled fishnets, and plastic bottles Threads 4 Thought also ensures that they have set human labor conditions in practice. Threads 4 Thought even provides a transparency report to take their consumers behind the curtain, and essentially show them how the sausage is made.
After giving birth to her first child, Monica Moyer learned that she wanted to be more careful about what came in contact with her baby’s skin. She decided to develop her own line of baby clothes from organic cotton, MonicaandAndy offers clothing for children from when they’re born to the age of eight. There’s even a line of maternity wear for the mommy to be!
Pact offers wardrobe essentials for men, women, and children that won’t break the bank. All of their clothing is made from organic cotton, and like other sustainable brands, they also give consumers the opportunity to send back their old pieces to be reused.
There is no other brand that does the outdoors quite like Patagonia. This is a brand that has also been against fast-fashion for some time. Patagonia belongs to both the Sustainable Apparel Coalition and the 1% For the Planet. A vast majority of their products are made from recycled fabrics, and they also offer a repair and reuse program.
Reformation is based in Los Angeles with fourteen stores locations, four being in the New York City area that is best known for its party dresses and mix n’ match sets. While this brand is on the pricey side, founder Yael Aflao has said that sustainability is at the core of everything they do. A majority of their products are made using eco-friendly materials like Tencel, generated from the eucalyptus tree.
Nau approaches sustainable fashion with an inventive attitude, pushing to always be better. They were able to put out the first collection of waxed organic cotton and winter coats that were made of 100% recycled down. Nau even invented their own durable water repellent (DWR) free of PFC’s (unnatural manmade chemicals). Nau is committed to creating durable, stylish sustainable clothing, and they’re willing to do the heavy lifting to make all of this happen.
Naja produces women’s intimates and swimwear with edgy and eco-conscious designs with recycled plastic bottles, as well as refraining from common dyes used in the garment industry. Instead, Naja uses digital printing to dye their products, which reduces its water waste.
Boody produces “thoughtful, sustainable essentials,” using only naturally grown organic bamboo for all of their products. Bamboo is regarded as an incredibly sustainable material, because of the fact that it does not require fertilizer, and it regenerates on its own. The bamboo that Boody uses is grown in China by the Hebei Jigao Chemical Fiber company, where it is grown in accordance with the OCIA/IFOAMand and the USDA National Organic Program. This ensures that all of their bamboo is pesticide-free.
Ilovebad makes natural organic blankets, underwear, t-shirts, towels, and oils. Hemp is the main material behind all of their products. The benefits of hemp include that it grows with little to no water, no pesticide use, and takes up little space compared to trees. Hemp is also a biodegradable material, so why not get a cozy new blanket that’s ethically sourced!
With brands like these becoming more popular the rise in interest in sustainable clothing can only go up. As sustainable fashion continues to become more popular it is important to be skeptical and raise an eyebrow at brands that suddenly make large claims about doing their part to save the Earth.
Companies have been found guilty of marketing their products as being eco-friendly and green when in reality they aren’t. This is a marketing technique known as “greenwashing”, so it’s important to be an active consumer and do your research.