What is ethical fashion?

There has been an increase recently in the use of the term ethical fashion but I wonder if we know exactly what it is referring to? Here is a simple guide to explain the basics.

Ethical Fashion

Generally ethical fashion is used to describe clothing and accessories that have been designed and made without exploiting workers or animals. The people involved in producing the garments are paid a living wage, have workers rights and are able to work in a safe environment. Usually the brand will be transparent and able to answer questions about the factories involved with producing their product.

Sustainable Fashion

This term is used to describe clothing and accessories that are produced with a low environmental impact. There can be many components involved. For instance, a sustainable brand might use organic materials, recycled or up cycled fabrics, natural fibres, vegetable or low impact dyes. They could be zero waste, use less water, lower carbon footprint, minimal packaging etc.

Slow Fashion

Encompasses both of the above. It can also be used to describe traditional artisan work. Slow fashion is really the opposite of fast fashion, brands who work to this concept tend to take longer to produce garments as they want to create something that will last a long time and not go out of fashion quickly. Fast fashion brands want us to consume a lot of clothes, its how they make their money. Slow fashion is the opposite of this.

Fair Trade Fashion

Fair Trade companies who use the World Fair Trade Organisations logo, must adhere to the ten principles of fair trade. This includes transparency, respect for the environment, ensuring good working conditions, fair payment. Read more about it here.

Conscious Consumerism

This is all about you! A conscious consumer is actively taking a stance and only buying something they truly love or need. While asking questions about how the product was made and who produced it. Remember there is usually a long supply chain in fashion so the more information you have the better.

I hope that clears up any confusion. Often there are no clear definition, ethical fashion can often be a generic term and but it helps to try and have a general understanding before trying to buy better from more ethical brands.

Images from Unsplash.



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  • What is the one piece of clothing that you couldn’t live without? 
For me its denim. It can be an incredibly intensive process to grow enough cotton to produce one pair of jeans. Followed with harsh dyes, chemicals, acids – all of which pollute the environment and can be detrimental to health of people producing the denim.

One way we can avoid this is to buy from ethical brands or buy secondhand. My top 5 options for buying ethical and sustainable denim are linked in the bio. 
#denim #jeans #30wears #nudiejeans #mudjeans #kingsofindigo #kuyichi #vintagedenim #100wears #consciousliving #ethicalfashion #sustainablefashion #capsulewardrobe #bethechange #thriftstorefinds #buylesschoosewell #wearwhatyoulove #chooseless #organiccotton


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The Green Edition is an exploration to help the ethically and sustainable minded find their way in the fashion world. Everyone can have a conscious wardrobe, whether you enjoy fashion and trends or just want to simplify your life.

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