So many everyday things we use in life are SUPER bad for the environment and aid in oppressing and exploiting billions of people around the world. The fashion industry is a major contributor to this misery and has someone who loves fashion but also longs to live a more ethical lifestyle I have struggled over the years to find a way to indulge my passion for all things sartorial without supporting companies and institutions that do more harm than good.
Photo: Workers in Southeast Asia work tirelessly to manually decontaminate cotton.
Photo: Former Nike employees protesting in Honduras.
This list of fashion staples includes products from companies that are making or selling clothes and accessories out of recycled or post consumer waste fabrics and materials, recycled textiles or vintage items while being careful not to engage in exploitative business practices.
Photos: Terry Richardson a successful and notorious fashion photographer who has exploited countless women of all ages (and some men presumably?) in the name of fame, status, fashion and wealth.
Photo: A river contaminated by toxic fabric dyes and other toxic chemicals from a nearby sweatshop that produces clothing.
Some of these companies have only sprung up in the last few years as global awareness of the damage the fashion industry is leaving in it’s wake is increasing motivating more of us to look for fashion we can look good in and feel good about purchasing. I hope you all like the selections I picked out. I thought it was best to find 5 staples that should be in every woman’s wardrobe due to their simple chicness and easy versatility. I hope that the items I have listed here are some value to you all. Buying something from a company whose values you believe in means you are voting with your money and helping increase the demand for ethical and eco-friendly businesses to thrive and more to pop up!
*Links to products and prices listed at the end of the post.
- A CHIC PAIR OF STREAMLINED SNEAKERS
This style was created by Spanish sustainable fashion brand EcoAlf. This style is called “California” and it is made out of recycled plastic bottles and a fabric named Sorona. I read up about Sorona a tiny bit and found out it is made using annually renewable plant-based ingredients. I also read that compared to the production of certain types of Nylon the process uses 30% less energy and releases 63% fewer greenhouse gas emissions.
2. AN ÜBER VERSATILE BLACK CAMISOLE
I found this one on Etsy, it is made by Tadatta Clothing. The fabric is also made from recycled plastic bottles.
3. A PAIR OF STYLISH YET UNDERSTATED SUNGLASSES
These were made from recycled fishing nets collected off the coast of Chile. Bureo is the retailer that manufactures and sells them. This style is called “The Kayo”, I love that they have amber colored lenses.
4. A TIMELESS LITTLE BLACK DRESS
This particular LBD is from Reformation, a women’s clothing brand that uses 40% vintage or deadstock fabric that would have normally ended up in a landfill. They also use Tencel, a fabric that is manufactured from the wood cellulose of Eucalyptus trees. The process used to make Tencel once won an award from the Europen Union for being friendly to the environment.
Another cool thing about Reformation is that they display the details of the carbon footprint left by each item in the product description section of their website. This gorgeous 60s inspired frock is called the Anise dress. According to the Reformation website it’s production used 78.0 gallons of water, compared to the industry standard of 1300 gallons. It also saved 1.4 pounds of waste, 1222 gallons of water and 21 pounds of carbon dioxide.
5. VINTAGE OR SECONDHAND JEANS IN YOUR FAVORITE CUT AND WASH
Jeans go a long way. They can be worn multiple times in between washings, they can be dressed up or down, worn for work or for play and are ALWAYS in fashion. In my late twenties and early thirties I stopped wearing them because I could never find a style that I felt comfortable in and also I did not feel that clothing that casual was my style anymore. This changed when I started to learn to skateboard. My boyfriend at the time (who also gave me my first skateboard and taught me how to use it bless his heart) would encourage me to wear his jeans (we wore the same size) to skate for safety and other utilitarian purposes. I resisted for a long time but after being sick of damaging my cute vintage garments and other adorable second hand outfits from my body violently crashing against the cement on numerous occasions after being launched off my skateboard, I finally relented and embraced denim.
Any second hand store will have a decent to awesome selection. If you live in the United States The Goodwill always has amazing selection of great quality vintage and modern denim. Etsy and Ebay also offer some options. The Levi’s in this photo are from Etsy.
Thank you for stopping by the blog everyone!
Here are the links to the products:
Ecoalf “California” Sneakers: $95.00 Get them here.
Bureo “Kayo” Sunglasses: $139.00 Get them here.
Reformation “Anise” dress. Get it here.