Here at Tribe Azul, we stand for ethical fashion - we want a sustainable and equitable future and we need to change our approach to fashion if we are to achieve that. The fashion industry alone accounts for 10% of the global greenhouse gas emissions and yet it is something that many don't consider when looking at improving their personal impact on the planet. There is an alternative to the damaging fast fashion that surrounds us. Fashion that is kind on the earth, the animals, and the humans all around us - Ethical fashion.
Ethical Fashion is sourced from factories that treat humans with respect and that care about the environment. It is sold by brands that treat humans with respect and care about the environment. This includes their employees, customers, and the people they deal with day to day. They also take care about things like the type of packaging and labeling they use and their supply chain. Ethical brands also support the local economy and are often small businesses supporting a family.
Sustainability is at the core of our business here at Tribe Azul. Everything we do, from the fabrics we source and the packaging of our products to the way we run our business, is designed to support the environment, the local economy, and the people we work with. Tribe Azul has a vision of a world where people work in harmony with the environment; where we leave our planet in better shape than we found it.
Fast Fashion is quite the opposite. Fast Fashion is sourced from factories that don’t respect humans. Whether that’s the way they are treated, the pay they are receiving, or not receiving, and the time spent working or oftentimes over-working. Fast Fashion industries and factories are usually not looking out for the environment, they typically are pushing awful chemicals into the atmosphere and are never looking back. They may make claims of sustainability but it’s up to the customer to find out if they can be trusted or not.
Fast Fashion is all over the world, and there are probably some fast fashion brands in your local mall right now. Think of them as the larger brands that are mass-producing the same thing over and over and then sending it to every corner of the earth. When making things that quickly, there are sure to be some unethical things happening, whether that’s with the environment, the employees, the way they are packaged, or how they are brought to you.
By the choices we make with regards to the type of companies we buy our clothes from we can make a big impact. Unfortunately there is a lot of 'green-washing' out there and it can make it difficult to discern what is really an ethical company and what is not. But there is a lot of good information out there. Together, through the choice of the clothing we buy, we can be part of the solution and not the pollution of the planet.
Here are some things to consider when trying to buy ethical:
- Materials used and the impact of their production (eg organic cotton vs conventional cotton);
- Buy clothing that will last;
- Where was the clothing made and is it local or fair trade;
- Will I be wearing this style for a season or long-term;
- What does this company stand for, do their values align with mine.