Finding the Story Behind Your Clothes

From unacceptable working conditions to the release of hazardous and copious amounts of waste - we are all aware to some degree that most of the clothes available to us are harbouring some dirty secrets. Stories of the garment industry are always disturbing, however they usually lack any practical ways to find out how specific brands we have come to love are contributing to making the industry better or worse. When the only production information you can find about a piece of clothing is a tiny tag that says "Made in China" it can feel impossible to ever really know the story behind your clothes.

GOOD NEWS! We are entering into a really exciting time, friends! As we collectively demand increased transparency and availability of ethically produced clothing, platforms that help us find information about our clothing are mobilizing. We've found some simple and easy tools to help you find the story behind your clothes. Keep reading for ethical clothing search engines and ethical shopping apps! 

Project Just

Project Just is a search platform with all kinds of information on your favourite brands. Want to know H&M's labour conditions? Urban Outfitter's environmental impact? Joe Fresh's transparency? It's all there! 

Why we love Project Just:

  • Easy brand look-up
  • Detailed information on transparency, environmental impact and labour conditions
  • Just Approved list - a "list of brands that are moving the industry in a positive direction"
  • Their "Discover" feature creatively promotes integrating ethical brands into every occasion 

Better Thread

Better Thread makes it easy to find ethical brands based on the causes you care about most by labelling companies with a variety of colour coded "ethics" badges including Vegan, Charitable, Fair and American Made. 

Why we love Better Thread:

  • Discover ethical brands that align with your specific values
  • Ethics badges make finding thoughtful companies quick and easy
  • Their blog reviews specific products, shares about new products and interview the leaders behind the brands

Orange Harp App

Shop via Orange Harp's marketplace app for clothing, accessories and lifestyle items made by socially conscious small businesses. 

Why we love Orange Harp:

  • Seamlessly browse and shop a curated collection of beautiful, earth friendly products
  • Filter your search by maker or by product
  • Save some cash on your favourite brands by browsing their sale section 

Good On You App - Coming Soon!

A social enterprise created by Ethical Consumers Australia, Good On You provides ratings and detailed information for over 1000 brands to give its user the power to make good choices, right in the palm of their hand. It is currently only available in Australia and NZ, but plans to release internationally soon. As always, we will keep you posted via our Facebook page.

Why we love Good On You:

  • Search by brand to see Good On You's rating on the way they treat people, the planet and animals
  • Refine searches by style, price or your values (labour rights, environmental protection, etc.)

Find a brand that isn't afraid to share every detail of their story.

Transparency in the fashion industry takes courage. As the number of inspiring and trustworthy brand options exhibiting this courage increases, it's becoming easier and easier to find an alternative to fast fashion the next time you need a new pair of shoes, sweater, or watch. Check out our Brand Love List to find our favourites or a few especially transparent brands below: 

We hope this article empowers you to learn more about some of your favourite brands, and encourages you to discover more sustainable alternatives. We'd love to hear about your experience using these tools or about your favourite ethical brands! Comment below or send us an email at mynewneighbour@gmail.com.