SGO: Fashionably kind – all you need to know about ethical fashion

If you’re on a bit of a roll and are finding faith in cruelty free cosmetics, know that ethical beauty does not just start with make-up. Large fashion conglomerates are gradually stepping up to the mark and wearing the fair trade stamp with pride on their gorgeous garments.

Blog Photo Fashion

Do be aware that the term “ethical fashion” does not just centre on fair trade. It has weighting in sustainable production of garments, working conditions, exploitation and many more branches under this tree.

If you’re after a starting point to make your wardrobe ethical, look no further. PeopleTree are a pioneering force in fair trade and environmentally sustainable fashion. Not only are their lines gorgeous, but you can assure that the process they took before reaching your front door was a fair, environmentally friendly and people friendly process. Their company aims to be 100% fair trade in their supply chain as well as following the guidelines of the World Fair Trade Organization Fair Trade Standards.

It HAS to be known that fair trade does not just start and end at a reasonable price for a skirt, because it is not the case at all. Before I was more informed, seeing a fair trade stamp on a brand made me think “Great! Cheap clothes!”, however, I have come to know that cheap clothes come at a cheap price and an unfair business relationship. PeopleTree quote their adoption of fair trade as: “The objective of Fair Trade is not profit at any cost, but to help people in the world’s most marginalised communities escape poverty, strengthen their communities and promote environmental sustainability.” Their main aim is to set an outstanding example, and there is no doubt that it is working.

More and more high street brands are gradually becoming fair trade and sustainable, with even some of the high flying designers adopting the business idea. To name a few, H&M have an entire range of affordable, sustainable and fair trade clothes, Monsoon have been fair trade since 1973, dedicating a huge part of their company to the ethics surrounding production and the well-being of others. More recently popular brand Fat Face, have a code of conduct that ensures their workers are treated fairly (and more recently on Black Friday, instead of slashing their prices in a crazy sale like everyone else does, they in fact took half of what they made that day and donated it to charity. Good work Fat Face!). Lastly, sporting brand New Balance were the first to start producing fair trade trainers back in 2012, and they have kept at it and another bonus, New Balance trainers are also vegan friendly.

If you’re after more information on brands and their ethical standards, most websites have pages on their websites about their ethical standards and what they do to be fair trade and sustainable. If you can’t find anything, you know what they’re doing wrong.

by student blogger, Amanda Elliott

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