Grace Pickford explains how you can find great sustainable shopping options, right from your phone.
Fashion provides sanctuary, imagination, and power to people all over the world. Fashion is identity, voice, and expression.
However, fast-fashion practices are becoming increasingly known for their destructive impacts on the environment, and human rights.
This year it was published that the fashion industry is responsible for 10% of carbon dioxide emissions worldwide each year, as well as for using an estimated 1.5 trillion litres of water.
Knowledge surrounding ethical and sustainable fashion practices is the strongest weapon that can be provided.
We have collated seven apps that you can install today which will help you to find more sustainable brands so that you can keep a guilt-free love for fashion.
Good On You
“Wear the change you want to see”.
Good On You is a search tool app that allows you to discover how sustainable your favourite brands are in their practices.
The app grades brands on a scale from ‘We Avoid’ to ‘Great’ and suggests alternatives with similar styles that have a better sustainability rating for you to try. The app was founded by Sandra Capponi and Gordon Renouf in 2013, and launched initially in Australia in 2015.
It is now the biggest of its kind and is supported by activist and actress Emma Watson who praises the app: “Good On You is my benchmark for sustainable fashion. This means that when I’m given a platform to speak about my choice of outfit, I will have a meaningful story to tell. And it’s powerful.”
Good On You provides consumers with a choice and enlightens people with transparency and truth. It is to be noted that if a brand does not disclose a lot of information regarding their practises and environmental values then Good On You will grade them lower.
The app’s rating system takes into account a brand’s human rights abuses, waste, and pollution.
They research a brand’s effects on their workers throughout the chain of supply. As stated on their website, this includes “policies and practices on child labour, forced labour, worker safety, freedom of association (the right to join a union), gender equality and payment of a living wage.”
They consider how far a brand empowers its workers and what freedoms they have.
Good On You also considers a brand’s waste and how they monitor their use of energy, emissions of carbon, and disposal of chemicals.
The app further researches if a brand uses animal products and what their welfare policies are.
Think Dirty was established by Lily Tse in 2012. Tse created the app after discovering how toxic chemicals in cosmetic products can be linked to cancer.
“Think Dirty® empowers and educates the consumer on the cosmetics industry by allowing them to make an informed decision on what products to purchase.”
Using the app, you can scan beauty and healthcare products and discover the ingredients present in the product. The ingredients are listed using a traffic light system organising them into “Dirty”, “Half n Half’, or “Clean”.
The rating is based entirely on the “chemical content” of products and the toxicity of their ingredients. There are currently 4500 brands in the system and 1.4 million products.
Renoon is an Amsterdam-based company that has created a search tool app that allows consumers to find sustainable fashion alternatives to match both their ethical standards, and styles of choice.
You can search for products by value (e.g. recycled, low impact on environment, organic), and by product type.
“Renoon’s mission is to accelerate the transition towards a more sustainable fashion industry (currently more polluting to the planet than airline and transportation combined).”
The co-founder and CEO of Renoon has stated that the motive behind the app was to allow people to continue enjoying fashion whilst preserving the environment.
The app educates and raises awareness about the important issues in the fashion industry that need to be tackled by providing consumers with the choice to search for brands according to their values.
The framework that Renoon uses to define sustainability is based around the four key criteria of “product, earth, humanity and future.” They gather information on products and brands relating them to this model in order to establish their level of sustainability. The app does not sell clothes but recommends the best places for consumers to make their purchases.
Better World Shopper
“A public research project for ethical consumers.”
Better World Shopper is a project committed to making environmental and social data accessible to consumers in order to educate and inform them to help make change happen.
The database holds information for over 2000 companies using 76 sources for data. The transparency provided by this information allows consumers to make choices based on their morals and decisions about where they put their money.
The app classifies companies on the five categories of Human Rights, The Environment, Animal Protection, Community Involvement, and Social Justice.
It scores all of the companies in the database from an A+ to an F. You can search for a specific company or by category to find the best rated brands for the products you are searching for.
The app is an online manifestation of Dr Ellis Jones’ book The Better World Shopping Guide: an encyclopaedia of products organised for the ease of consumers to find the most sustainable and ethical options for not only clothing brands, but for many other categories of products including food, coffee, computers, and cars.
Faer’s mission is to “create a shopping experience that is simple, transparent and sustainable.”
Founded in 2017, the app was built by a team in Berlin, Germany, and is Euro based. However, it can still be used as a source of inspiration for discovering new fashion brands.
The app has a clean, straightforward layout. The homepage is filled with fashion inspo all from sustainable brands that when selected show where the clothing items are from. You can search for specific categories and items of clothing to find sustainable options.
There is also a tool that lets users take a screenshot of clothing from an app such as Instagram and Faer will find similar items that are from ethical and sustainable brands. If the app suggests a brand that you fall in love with, it will show you the locations where you can find this brand in your area.
Eco Report Card
“Transparency for ethical consumers”
Eco Report Card is like Better World Shopper in that it grades the companies in its database with an A to F based on the 5 core areas of human rights, environmental sustainability, social responsibility, political involvement, and economic fairness. There are 180 companies stored and organised A-Z and according to their rating, making it super easy to find more sustainable alternatives for your fave brands.
Want to check if your favourite fashion brands are working towards more sustainable and ethical practices? Fair Fashion? grades brands on a scale from “Nothing To Say” meaning the brand did not provide information, “Dragging Their Feet”, “Could Do Better, “Some Effort”, “On The Way”, to “Doing Well” where brands are actively working to ensure a living wage to their workers.
This app is not only a search tool but an informative hub for all of your fair fashion queries. There is information on what a living wage actually is, as well as a glossary for fair fashion terminology.
The Fair Fashion? app was created by the Clean Clothes Campaign. The CCC is an international alliance whose goal is to empower people working within the fashion industries and to improve working conditions. If your resolution for 2021 is to be more sustainable and to find alternatives for your favourite fashion brands, check out these apps to find your perfect fit where the only cost is what is written on the price tag.