What does it mean to be an ethical clothing brand?

So you care about animals and the environment, right? You believe in no harm to others, but how does that play out in clothing, and what do you need to factor into your purchasing behaviour to ensure you're buying ethical clothing? 

Luckily for you, Plant Faced Clothing makes it easy to shop for ethically made clothing. Our ethos ensures that every cool item of vegan clothing you throw on of ours is good for the planet AND its people. But we don’t just talk the talk, so keep reading to find out how we are an ethical clothing brand and why. 


What is ethical fashion?

What on earth is ethical fashion? Many of us have heard this phrase before, but not all of us can pinpoint what exactly makes one shirt more ethical than the next. 

People certainly have differing opinions on what makes fashion ethical, but Compare Ethics has broken it down into three main points: 

  • Social Good
  • Planet Friendly
  • Animal Cruelty-Free

In an ideal world, businesses who claim to sell ethical clothing garments would make and sell items that adhere to all three core points. Let’s take a look at each one and discover how our clothing is ethical and values the three ways in which clothing is ethical in the first place!


We respect our people

There are a lot of people who play a part in the making of our cool clothing. From the farmers who grow the cotton used to make our shirts, the extensive manufacturing teams sewing, dyeing, printing everything we make, right down to the people in our warehouse shipping your items to you. Our team has fair wages, reasonable working hours, safe working conditions, and an amazing atmosphere in which we work together! We also support local businesses during the production stage.

Almost our entire range has been officially certified ethically produced, which means you can buy with peace of mind. Our T-shirts are all certified by the Fair Wear Foundation, a non-profit organisation whose mission is to see a world where the garment industry supports workers in realising their rights to safe, dignified, and properly paid employment. 

Some of their strict labour standards in ethical production include, but are not limited to:

1. Employment is freely chosen

2. Freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining

3. There is no discrimination in employment

4. No exploitation of child labour

5. Payment of living wage

6. Reasonable hours of work

7. Safe and healthy working conditions

8. Legally binding employment relationship

 

We respect the planet

Being plant-based and spreading this awesome message was the #1 driving factor of why we started Plant Faced Clothing. But living a truly vegan lifestyle comes with a certain amount of understanding of the nuances and intersectionality of respecting the greater Mother Earth around us as well as its beings. Charlie, the founder of Plant Faced Clothing, became vegan around 2015, and started the brand when they couldn't find clothing to wear this message in a way that was subtle, unique, well-designed, but also using eco-friendly materials and being ethically made. All of the reasoning behind being vegan can be seen in almost every detail of our ethical clothing company.

"Plant Faced is streetwear without the sweatshops. Even better, it helps you spread an important message, whilst looking cool," says founder Charlie.

In addition to living a plant-based life for the animals, Charlie also decided to do so because it’s better for the environment, which is why we decided to make our clothes ethically, e.g.:

  • We use water-based eco-friendly vegan inks
  • We use 100% ORGANIC cotton for most of the range
  • We ship in eco-friendly packaging (cardboard and paper)

We give back

Another important factor in being ethical is what is done with the profit of our products, which is why we started our Buy 1 Plant 1 initiative! We love our mother earth and wanted to find a way to give a little back for what she gives, and this initiative is certainly a small step in being able to do so. Some of the places we plant trees with the help of the Eden Reforestation Projects include: 

  • Nepal
  • Madagascar
  • Haiti
  • Indonesia
  • Mozambique
  • Kenya

We also frequently donate to animal charities whenever and however possible, as well as raising money for other causes we find important such as the bushfires, Black Lives Matter, etc.

What it doesn’t mean to be ethical within the clothing industry:

  1. To exploit women, children, POC, and other potentially vulnerable groups of people for labour
  2. To product cheap and poor quality clothing which ultimately affect the planet in doing so
  3. To produce clothing with the intention of it lasting only one season

In other words, any brand or company that falls under the category of fast fashion is not likely to produce ethically made clothing. We ensure 100% of the time we make our clothes to be pieces that you'll love and will last, as well as to respect everyone involved in its production.

How to know if a clothing brand is ethical

Clothing production in general can have hugely negative impacts on both people and the planet. For the most clearcut example, fast Fashion is pretty much the opposite of sustainable and ethical fashion - it's clothing which is normally made at warp speed by underpaid labourers. It is made quickly to keep up with trends before moving onto the next fad, which means it is made as quickly as it is disposed of. They are cheap to consumers but come at a high price to their creators of the garments and Mother Earth.

If you want even more information about what fast fashion is and how to avoid funding it, we highly recommend watching ‘The True Cost’ documentary, which exposes who really pays the price for your cheap clothing. It is definitely a difficult watch but worth taking the time to sit down and educate yourself. See trailer below:

 Human rights and the environment get lost in the shuffle when profit is put at the forefront of business - help fight fast fashion by shopping ethically today! 

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Did you love this article on how to source ethically made clothing? Do you want even more information on how to shop ethically? Then check out our Journal - our list of helpful blog posts on how to shop ethically, how our clothes are ethically made, and so much more!