These brands are changing the game when it comes to sustainability and fashion.
As companies that endlessly produce marketable products for consumers increases, so does the amount of waste and exploitation of human workers. The number of companies that engage in bad practices far outnumber those that attempt to do right by the environment and workers.
Today’s culture is all about fast fashion, and that means cutting corners that usually take longer and cost more. Sustainable brands are often overlooked because of the higher cost of merchandise generated by the company’s commitment to quality and justice.
If you’ve been looking for a way to live a more sustainable life and make the world a better place one article of clothing at a time, these are the brands to buy. Check out Global Citizen’s original list if you want to see how these brands size up against other similar brands that are less conscious and sustainable.
Chinti & Parker Clothes
This company produces clothing in carefully selected factories that reduce carbon emissions by following Carbon Neutral Company guidelines. They use materials that are environmentally sustainable, even in their packaging, such as organic cotton, bamboo, and seaweed. Polyester is excluded because it can take up to 200 years to decompose. The founders said of their decision to be more conscious, “For many other things, we can?t help but think of the Henry Ford quote, ‘whether you think you can or whether you think you can?t, you?re right.’ It?s up to everyone involved to create mass change.”
These sunglasses are made to custom-made the shape of your face and are made from sustainable and durable Moso bamboo while still getting UVA protection. They partner with organizations that, for every pair of sunglasses they sell, they provide free eye exams, prescription eye-glasses, and medical assistance for those with cataracts or similar eye deficiencies. They also partner with Pencils of Promise to bring education to 250 millions kids around the world that lack basic skills such as reading, writing, and math.
Minna Wedding Dresses
Minna is described as an “eco-luxe” brand and creates wedding dresses, veils, and bridesmaids dresses for that special day. What makes them stand out is that their products are made from sustainable, organic, recycled and locally produced textiles. The company also utilizes environmentally-friendly production practices, such as?local manufacturing and zero waste pattern cutting techniques for every garment.
Most shoes are composed of rubber, which is a highly unsustainable material that used to be sourced from the Amazon rainforest and is mostly made synthetically with oil now. The Amazon remains the only place where rubber is naturally produced and Veja makes shoes sourced from 60 families who own land with wild rubber. Orders for the shoes are taken six months ahead of time because they don’t want to overwhelm the families.?Veja co-founder Bia Saldanha?works within the rubber industry to create a fair price for rubber and those who harvest it and preserve valuable rainforest.
Punjammies, made by Sudara, are produced by women in India that are recovering after escaping human trafficking. The venture started when Shannon Keith visited India and learned that young girls and women were being sold into sex slavery back in 2005. She was inspired to launch Sudara, a company that helps women evade trafficking and sex slavery. They employ women to keep them out of the brothels and empower them.
31 Bits Jewelry
31 bits?was started be college students who were moved by a friend’s story of her recent experience in Uganda. Women their age were single mothers with no education and no job, but they were making jewelry out of old posters. The company creates gorgeous jewelry while giving displaced women in Northern Uganda and Indonesia an opportunity to combat poverty by giving them jobs,?education, health care, and counseling.
Teysha Leather Boots
The use of leather is already raises questions of morality, so Teysha uses ethically sourced Guatemalan textiles and leather for handmade shoes. The custom-made shoes are handcrafted on looms in factories that are sustainably run. The company empowers artisans in Guatemala, where over half of the largely rural community lives in poverty. You can see how these beautiful shoes are made here.
This company has a slogan that says it all:??Wear Sseko. Send a girl to college.??The women that are employed by Sseko are high potential, talented young women that are generating an income to eventually go to college. Every single woman that has graduated from the company is either currently in school or has already graduated. The company is based in Uganda the employees come from all walks of life.
People Tree T-Shirts
Basic t-shirts are often taken for granted and might seem easy to produce, but to make one cotton tee and a pair of jeans, it takes about 20,000 liters of water.?People Tree uses 100% FairTrade cotton and even works to make sure that cotton workers earn 30% in income. The garments are made with sustainable materials and use traditional skills in production that support rural communities.
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