Ethical Fashion for a Greener Planet

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Studies suggest that retail therapy can improve one’s mood. One way to enjoy shopping conscience free however, is to place ethical fashion high on your agenda. Compare Ethics defines ethical fashion as engaging in three core values: animal cruelty-free, social good and planet friendly. Eco-friendly living has become increasingly popular in recent years, and many companies from luxury to high street are turning to this green movement, in the realisation that fast fashion is damaging our planet. Although sustainable fashion can be pricey, here are 10 affordable labels that are perfect for students, whilst at the same time contributing to the quest for a greener planet.

1.     H&M Conscious Collection

H&M are committed to creating sustainable fashion. Their goal is for all of their products to be made from 100% recycled or other sustainably sourced materials by 2030. Their website states that currently 57% of the material they use matches this description. The material used to make H&M’s conscious products use less water, energy and chemicals than conventional materials, having less of an impact on the planet.

2.     ASOS

ASOS has now dedicated a whole section of its website to ethical and fair trade fashion under their “Eco Edit” and “Responsible Edit”, offering sustainable, stylish and environmentally conscious clothing, accessories and living items. This collection offers items made from recycled goods, for example swimsuits, tops and dresses, as well as items made with sustainable fibres and fabrics, using less water and creating less waste.

3.     TOMS

TOMS is renowned for its ‘one for one’ practice, whereby with every one pair of shoes bought, a pair is donated to a child in need. Through purchases, TOMS also helps provide sight, water and safe birth services to people in need. The website states that through TOMS’ plan, over two million children have been protected from hookworm and there has been a student enrolment increase of 1000 in Liberian primary school classrooms after TOMS shoe distribution began. With shoes beginning at £30, excluding sale, it is an affordable purchase that gives back.

4.     Levi’s

By engaging in responsible production and design through waterless innovations, better cotton initiatives, a screened chemistry programme, responsible down standard of ultra-warm filling and authorised vintage and redone denim, Levi’s has begun contributing to a greener planet. Beyond this, they are improving the lives of employees and supporting the next music generation, LGBTQIA+ community and skateparks.

5.     Gandys

In 2004, Rob and Paul Forkan lost their parents in the Boxing Day Tsunami in Sri Lanka, awakening their desire to create something unique to honour their adventurous parents. In 2012, Rob and Paul founded Gandys to support their Orphans for Orphans foundation by donating 10% of profits to helping underprivileged children affected by the Tsunami. In 2014, they opened their first kids campus in Sri Lanka to help fellow orphans, with the campus focusing on academic support, woodwork lessons and various sports activities. Beginning with the sale of flip-flops, the company has kept on expanding, helping children around the world.

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KIDS CAMPUS UPDATE🚨 We are officially over half way through building our new kids’ campus in Rio we couldn’t be more excited to show you all the progress that has been achieved! We believe that every child’s life is important, no matter what circumstances they are brought up in. That’s why at our campus’ we provide the kids with an education, nutritional meals and teach them important life skills so they can have more opportunities in life 🌍 When we built our first kids’ campus in Sri Lanka there were initially 30 children at the facility. Throughout the years this has increased to over 300 kids! We are looking to achieve the same success with our Brazil campus. So, who’s excited?!?! #dontjustexist 💚😃

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6.     Monki

Starting from this August, 100% of Monki’s cotton will be sustainably sourced, one of the steps towards their goal to use only recycled or other sustainably sourced materials by 2030. Additionally, all of their stores offer garment and textile recycling for clothing from any brand in any condition and every store and office is powered by renewable energy.

7.     ActionAid

ActionAid have recently teamed up with five leading artists to create a range of empowering t-shirts as part of their #MyBodyIsMine campaign, aiming to encourage women and girls around the world to reclaim their rights to their bodies and lives. Each t-shirt costs £22 and 100% of the profits will go towards ActionAid’s work with women and girls living in poverty.

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Five inspirational female artists have designed exclusive t-shirts to support our #mybodyismine campaign. This @cliopeppiatt design and others are available from today on #MHDay2019 ❤! . We want women and girls worldwide to reclaim their rights to their bodies and say #MyBodyIsMine. With the UK festival season fast approaching, the exclusive t-shirts are the best way to wear your solidarity with women and girls who have survived, or face violence – on your sleeve. . Profits from sales will support ActionAid’s work helping girls get access to sanitary products to protect their dignity, escape violence and have the right to a fair future. Order yours now at actionaid.org.uk/tshirts. . #actionaid #actionaiduk #mhday2019 #periods #periodpoverty #menstrualhealth #tshirt #cliopeppiatt #womensrights #girlsrights

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8.     Nobody’s Child

Nobody’s Child’s mission is to provide sustainable solutions by re-purposing leftover fabric from past seasons to divert it from landfill. They also donate leftover material to fashion colleges to aspire the next generation of fashion designers. They care about their employees and the factories that they work in, including striving for workers’ rights, fair wages, good working conditions and sustainable livelihoods.

9.     MANGO

Conscious of the planet, MANGO launched the Take Action programme with sustainable actions directed to improve processes, work environment and the lives of their employees. MANGO’s Committed Collection is responsibly crafted to support environmental sustainability.

10. Weekday

Weekday is 100% committed to sustainable fashion, available at an incredibly affordable price. Today, 68% of their products are made from sustainable materials, but they want to do better. They aim to be using only organic or recycled cotton by 2020, and only reusable, recyclable or biodegradable plastic in their packaging by 2025. Weekday is also committed to animal rights and the welfare of their workers regarding fair wages and trade unions.

Commonly, if you search the internet for ethical fashion, the price tags are overwhelming. Despite this, sustainable fashion is no longer just a trend of luxury designers such as Vivienne Westwood and Stella McCartney. Now, it does not always have to break the bank. Join the green movement and start avoiding fast fashion to help save our planet.

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History student and aspiring journalist

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