Fashion for the Good: Top Brands to Shop at Without Supporting Fast Fashion

More stories from Katie Popp


Did you know that more money has been spent on online stores this year than during the entire holiday season in 2019? Adobe Analytics revealed that just in the past three months, nearly $153 billion has been spent on online shopping, which is 7% higher than the 2019 holiday season ($142.5 billion). Following those numbers, 43.8% of the 2020 sales total has been from fast fashion sites such as Fashion Nova, Forever 21, Shein, and Zara. Fast fashion brands are quick to manufacture clothes that are in style and often sell at fair prices. However, the problem with these sites is that the factories have negative impacts on the workers and the environment. According to Business Insider, between the toxins in the cheap dyes and the smoke from the machinery, the industry takes second for the largest polluter in water supplies. Even though the price may be a little higher, here are some brands to shop online without supporting fast fashion.

Patagonia is an outdoor brand that has been working against fast fashion since it was founded 1973. According to their website, all of their clothing is made up of recycled and organic materials (such as older clothing and plastic). While their products tend to be more expensive, customers prove that they seem to be durable in all weather and last for a longer period of time. Patagonia has a large range of different products for men and women of all ages; from winter coats, quarter zips, and t-shirts to blankets and camping supplies, they have products for all weather wear/use. The site also includes that some profits from shopping on their website goes to preserving natural resources and national parks, so you know your money is going towards a good cause. 

Ivory Ella is another brand focuses on preserving wildlife. Ivory Ella has a large variety of clothing for all ages. Each item incorporates their iconic elephant logo. With every purchase, 10% of the proceeds goes to saving the elephants (all information on which organizations they support and other details about the proceeds can be found on their website). Similarly to Ivory Ella, brands such as Pawz and Shelly Cove work with nonprofit organizations to spread awareness and send profits from purchases towards sheltered animals and sea life. Even though each of these brands support different organizations, their products (t-shirts, sweatshirts, phone accessories, etc) mostly interest teenage girls. Other information following their proceeds and charities are also included on the websites.

While most athletic brands are considered unethical (for example, companies that use chemicals in manufacturing or mistreat workers) brands such as Athleta use recycled materials in their clothing to protest sweatshops and waste put into the environment (information found on their social media pages and website). This brand has a large variety of clothing for working out or staying at home. While the price may be a little high, ratings have suggested that the products are good quality and perfect for any scenario. 

There are many other online stores that are not fast fashion, and many of them are smaller companies. Through a little research, great brands and products that support a better cause are not hard to find. Websites including Good On You can be used as a resource to check ethicability of your favorite brands as well.