What could a high fashion label and outdoors apparel brand possibly have in common…?
Stella McCartney (6.4m followers) and Patagonia (4.6m followers) have both been innovative leaders in the fashion industry since they founded.
… they both help people connect with their desire to be better humans.
So, what have they done differently?
These brands have not recently joined the sustainability train, in fact they have been amongst the top innovators for sustainability in the fashion industry - decades before it was virally broadcasted as an important issue. They are, without a doubt, leading us down a well-tested and successful pathway for all our other aspiring eco-conscious brands to follow.
Quickly, whilst I have you here...
I’d like to properly acknowledge these brands and their fundamental dedication to taking the first steps on a global mission to tackle the evolving climate crisis. My interest in these brands has committed me to understand and become aware of how much passion, research, and funding that is ingrained into the company culture and action in order to prioritise such sustainable practices… especially in a time that wasn’t quite ready yet to understand or appreciate it.
These two brands were founded as industry innovators and have continually been setting an example to the world that there is an alternative to the existing & increasingly damaging system in the fashion industry.
Incase you’re new to the sustainability conversation; hi :) & welcome! I’m so happy you’re here with us now… ready for some unexposed industry stats? you may find these shocking, which is why we’re committed to making some changes.
The fashion industry is the second largest polluter in the world… right after the oil industry.
Clothing production is the third biggest manufacturing industry after the automotive and tech industries.
Textile production contributes to climate change more than international aviation and shipping combined.
The fashion industry is also the second largest consumer of water.
The apparel industry is responsible for 10% of global carbon emissions… (which ranks higher than all international flights and shipping emissions combined.)
Then on top of all of that you need to add the addition of chemicals, global transport and non-biodegradable packaging to the already excessive environmental cost… Wild, I know… It feels like an insane amount of factors that are not held accountable for by the fashion industry, but at least now you probably understand why Ecocious is, so decided in following Patagonia and Stella McCarney sustainable endeavours and have dedicating our working lives into amending this global issue.
However where there is dark there is also light. So don’t worry, Ecocious is about to start shining a spotlight onto the deceitful practices by most of the mainstream market and will uncover all greenwashing and market misinformation currently in circulation. Ecocious brands already respect our environment and consumers, by giving them their own platform on which to shine we endeavour to incite a change the industry so desperately needs.
Stella McCartney | 20+ years of sustainable fashion | LONDON | 6.4m IG following
Stella McCartney has been a lifelong vegetarian and naturally, so is her brand. They have never used leather, skin, fur or feathers in any of their products and with such strong ethics towards animals it is only natural that environmental consideration has also been a fundamental part of the company over the past two decades.
When a company makes the conscious effort to choose the best quality products in all aspects of the design and considers both the environment and its consumers, this is what we consider to be a sustainable brand - and Stella McCartney is at the forefront of doing just that.
Stella McCartney was the first brand to guarantee its viscose was verified from sustainable sources and by developing a way of generating viscose they simultaneously protected ancient forests. Since 2012 all of the handbags have been lined using fabric made from recycled water bottles. They are also currently exploring new ways of creating silk, their wool is hand selected from high quality animal welfare farms and of course they use organic cotton, re engineered cashmere, recycled nylon and polyester (instead of virgin synthetic products - which do nothing but harm to our environment with an extremely low cost for the manufacture and a voracious high profit return).
Patagonia | 40+ years of sustainable fashion | CALIFORNIA | 4.6m IG following
Patagonia is a brand that has been around for years, over 40 to be precise. Originating out of a small company that created clothing for silent sports (those that do not require an engine- think hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking, surfing etc..). From a business started by a bunch of climbers and surfers they have now accrued support and respect from consumers in every corner of the globe.
The Patagonia mission statement alone hooked me into being a supporter of the brand for life…
“build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis”
It’s short, sweet and will have you feeling all warm and fuzzy - a refreshing reminder that successful genuine business people do still exist.
Not only do they make their products out of sustainable materials (and always have) they ALSO offer free repairs on everything as they believe an item should be able to last a lifetime instead of needing to continually buy new ones. Save money and save the planet? BIG YES.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Where did I do my research?
here are my resources….
- How fast fashion is destroying the planet, NY TIMES
- UN Alliance For Sustainable Fashion addresses damage of ‘fast fashion’
- 20 Hard Facts About Fast Fashion, Jennifer Darmo
- The State of Fashion 2020: Navigating uncertainty
- Environmental impact of textile reuse and recycling - A review