In recent years there has been a huge push on being environmentally mindful in not only fashion, but almost every different industry, and it’s great to see the changes that are being made by a number of brands out there – large and small – to ensure that we’re helping the planet in every way that we can.
Although many consumers are working hard to help save the planet (literally), there is a responsibility for brands to do their part, too – if they’re able to do what they already do but using less plastic, recycling more or sourcing materials from the UK rather than abroad, reducing carbon emissions, then it makes a huge impact. That’s why we want to celebrate the steps that are being taken and have rounded up our favourite brand initiatives so far:
H&M introduced its textile recycling initiative in 2013, offering customers a £5 voucher when they donate a bag of unwanted clothing (by any brand and in any condition) at any of its stores. The clothing is then either ‘reused, reworn or recycled’ and the brand guarantees that 0% goes to landfill.
In a similar vein, the reGAIN app is a quick and easy way for brands to contribute to the recycling of clothes, footwear and accessories, without having to set up the scheme in-house. reGAIN encourages users to donate unwanted fashion pieces at a local drop off point, and in return offers them exclusive discounts at a number of brands across fashion and lifestyle. Donated items are then reused and recycled, avoiding contributing to landfill. It’s an easy way for consumers to do their bit, and for brands to sign up to something positive – contributing brands currently include Interflora, Boohoo, Pretty Little Thing, In The Style, Femme Luxe, I Saw It First, Public Desire, Koi, AO.com, Gousto and many more.
Topshop recently announced a vegan shoe range (pictured) and also confirmed that they would be looking to launch more cruelty free accessories in the future, as a part of a sustained effort to be kinder to animals and the planet. The range is jam packed full of gorgeous designs and is affordable, to boot (excuse the pun)!
Fast fashion brand Pretty Little Thing has recently announced the launch of a basics range made from only recycled materials, including cut offs and old plastic bottles. The range encompasses bodysuits, co-ords and dresses and is available in a full range of sizes.
High street giant M&S recently announced that 100% of the cotton used in its fabrics is now more sustainably sourced, using less water, less pesticide and less fertiliser. This comes as a part of its sustainability mission over the last decade, which includes goals to make all packaging recyclable by 2022, halve food waste by 2025 and reduce operational emissions by 80%. They also want to ensure that all key raw materials will come from sustainable sources by 2025. Bravo, M&S!
And for some great non-fashion initiatives…
One of my favourite stories from the last few weeks – Carlsberg has developed a way to literally stick its beers together, cutting out the need for the plastic rings that cause so much devastation to animals and the planet in general. The best bit? The innovation came about when one of their staff members spent a weekend buying adhesive from a hardware store and experimenting at home with it – so simple and yet so impactful. Here’s hoping that other brands take note and adopt this practice, too.
As a company that uses 1.8million straws a day in the UK alone, McDonalds made a real statement – and a real difference – when it moved to all paper straws. It’s not the only brand either, with JD Wetherspoon and Pizza Express amongst the many that have made this simple change. Unfortunately, there has been a campaign to bring the plastic straws back recently, with McDonalds customers complaining that the paper straws go mushy in their milkshakes, so this may be something that McDonalds has to address, however I hope (and doubt) they’ll go back to plastic.
Last weekend’s London Marathon saw the first time that organisers moved away from single use plastic bottles for runners, by providing 200,000 seaweed pouches filled with a sports drink instead. The 2018 run saw almost 1,000,000 bottles used and although this year only 200,000 of those were replaced with the pouches, event organisers have confirmed that the remaining bottles will exist in a closed loop system where they are collected after the race and processed to create more bottles.
We’re so impressed by the moves that are being made and look forward to seeing what else brands roll out over the coming weeks, months and years, as we all do our part for the world in which we live.
– Jazmin Farrell-Cabrera, Director & Co-Founder