How to Tell if a Brand is Ethical & Sustainable

No brand is going to be perfect, especially at this point when the push for ethical fashion is still relatively new (unfortunately). What’s more important is a brand that’s fully transparent and honest. You’d be more inclined to trust a brand that says “we’re doing well in this area but we know we need to improve over here,” rather than a brand that claims to be doing everything perfectly (hint: they’re probably not and they’re probably greenwashing).

How do you find out if a brand is ethical in every stage from seed to garment? Look on their website and social media pages, or just ask! Companies willing to talk to their customers about these business practices are the ones that care about them. Below are some of the questions Kate Hall asks of brands when she’s doing her research:

  • Where are all your products/materials sourced from (details of each material type)? e.g. countries, certifications, tags, packaging, etc.
  • Where do your products end up at the end of their life? How can they be recycled and kept in the resource loop?
  • How are your products shipped to customers? e.g. packaging and carbon neutral shipping.
  • Who makes your products? (as specific as possible, please)
  • How do you ensure the people who make your products are paid a fair wage?
  • How do you foster diversity and equity in your business? (practical examples, please)