Greenwashing de-bunked

With sustainable fashion more in-vogue than ever before, shoppers are starting to raise their eyebrow at brands sustainability claims… and rightly so. With the rise of sustainable fashion has come a tidal wave of greenwash; so what is greenwashing and why is it getting us down?

Greenwashing is the process of misleading consumers through marketing, in order to present products as sustainable + ethical.

A recent survey of British consumers reported recently that only 1 in 5 shoppers believe sustainability claims made by brands. Greenwashing is causing mistrust and confusion amongst consumers, and the overselling of environmental benefits of fashion might actually be slowing environmental progress down. So how can we spot greenwashing in fashion?

vague wording, ambiguous statements


Is a brand using fluffy language with no clear meaning? Shoppers deserve transparency, honesty + tangible evidence on how the brands they buy are working towards their sustainability targets. If the information isn’t readily available, ask questions - the proof is in the pudding!

the bad outweighs the good


Common with fast fashion labels is the ‘conscious’ collection; an individual item or line of items that are reportedly eco-friendly, yet exists as a tiny portion amongst the brands other products.

When identifying sustainability, think about the garment workers, their wages + living conditions, the fabric itself, the water used, waste created, deforestation + the journey of the clothing.

green on the surface


Don’t be fooled by earthy tones (hey, nothing against the colour green!), images of nature + symbols used to convey environmentalism. Always take a closer look to see if brands have the supporting evidence that backs up their green image.

encouraging mass over-consumption


Is a brand continuously promoting flash sales, seriously low prices, with a constant turn-over of new products. Consider at what cost? When identifying sustainability, think about the garment workers, their wages + living conditions, the fabric itself, the water used, waste created, deforestation + the journey of the clothing.


so how can we stop greenwashing?


• Continue learning and change your shopping habits in support of truly sustainable businesses
• Hold brands accountable by calling out for transparency
• Advocate for industry wide regulations to protect people and the planet


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