How to Check if Your Favourite Fashion Brands are Ethical
Over the past few years there has been a clear shift in the priorities of today’s consumers. In the fashion industry it is no longer about buying cheap items that lose quality quickly. It’s now about ensuring a product will not only last longer, but has also been sourced in a way that doesn’t cause harm to the people who make it. Despite this shift, the fashion industry is still renowned for practices that exploit its workers.
So how do you know if a product has been ethically sourced? Here are a few ways you can check the ethics of a company:
1. Read the ‘About’ page
The first and easiest step is to read the ‘About’ page on the brand’s website. This is where brands tend to outline their values. They can include anything from their motivation for starting the company to a detailed outline of their supply chain. If it’s not in the main menu always make sure to check the footer of every page. Many companies put some of their links here to avoid cluttering up the main menu.
2. Look for pages specifically about the brands ethics
Many brands might only include a small amount of information about their ethics in the ‘About’ page. If this is the case, they may have dedicated an entirely new page to detail exactly what the company is doing to follow their ethos.
3. Check what ethical certifications they have
This is where things can get a little trickier and may require a bit more searching. However, one of the best ways to confirm that a company has good ethical practices is to see if they are certified by a third-party organisation. Some good certifications are the Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production (WRAP) and the Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI). Keep in mind that there might be no need for these certifications if the manufacturing process is done in a country like Australia that already has laws surrounding ethical practices.
4. See what others are saying
Another good option is to check a third-party source. You can start by looking them up on google and see what type of results come up; keep an eye out for anything questionable. Looking up the ethics of the company will likely bring up third-party reviews, or you can go directly to a site like Good On You to search the brand and see what they think of it. They’re not great for smaller brands and seem to be focused in the Unites States but it’s definitely a good place to start!
5. Look for an ‘impact report’
Some companies particularly dedicated to making a difference in the world will create an impact report. This is a detailed report outlining the effects the company has had on the area they are trying to improve. This might include how they have improved their worker’s rights or how much they have reduced their environmental impacts. These details might also be detailed in their annual report. It might be a bit hard to find, but a look through their ‘About’ page or footer menu should be enough to see if they have one that is publicly accessible.
6. Just ask!
If you can’t find the information through these sources, your next best option is to actually ask the company. They should have a contact option where you can email them. A few good questions to ask are:
Where are your clothes made?
Is your factory ethically certified?
What are your clothes made of?
Can you send me an impact report?
We hope these tips will make it easier for you to check if the brands you love are ethical. It can be a lot of work researching all of this for each retailer, though. That’s why we at Zozii have done the screening process for you! Everything you find on our site is ethically sourced.
Head over to our shop if you’re looking for activewear that gives a damn!