When it comes to being more sustainable in the way we consume and dispose of fashion, we can start by adjusting our buying behaviour to benefit the wellbeing of workers producing our clothing tirelessly across the globe and our finite natural resources.
The obvious change is to simply buy less. But if you’re in desperate need of replacing some wardrobe staples with high-quality versions produced in an ethical manner, we’ve curated a list of our favourite ethical brands to have on your radar – plus some of the coveted items we want to shop right now.
Consider renting before buying something new
If you’re dying to jump on a trend or really need an outfit for a special occasion, consider renting from initiatives like Designer Wardrobe, OhRentMe, Lend the label, and Love Me, Rent Me. Or better yet, hit the thrift stores to find some hidden gems. Believe us, with our current consumption habits, more clothing is coming through unworn, still labelled and ready for your interpretation. It’s a surefire way to ensure nobody shows up wearing the same thing as you (and you can do it without breaking the bank!)
Do your research
Keep an eye out for the values like ‘sustainable’, ‘fair’, ‘organic’, ‘transparent’ and ‘minimal waste’ in addition to recognised certifications to quantify their efforts, which are all positive hallmarks for a trustworthy brand. Otherwise, there are even apps and websites that will tell you eg the Good on You app, Project JUST, the Sustainable Apparel Coalition website and the Behind The Barcode search tool.
Ethical brands to have on your radar and which ones to shop
Now, here’s the fun part. There are in fact plenty to choose from both in New Zealand and abroad. We’re big fans of collective websites that house plenty of ethical-only brands to make our clothing search more pain-free, such as Well Made Clothes which stocks Kiwi brands Kowtow, Miss Crabb, Penny Sage, Harman Grubisa and Ovna Ovich. Otherwise Good Studios from across the ditch was founded on ethical values and offers a range of sustainable lifestyle and fashion products to browse to your heart’s content.
- Eloise Panetta
- Harman Grubisa
- Maggie Marilyn
- Matt + Nat
- Organic Crew
- Revel Knitwear
- Sister Studio
- Standard Issue
- The Wylde
- Viktoria & Woods
- Wynn Hamlyn
Scroll for our edit of items we want to shop right now from our favorite ethical brands: