The Upswing of Conscious Fashion: Everything you need to know

conscious fashionPhoto by Alyssa Strohmann from Unsplash.

In recent years, there has been a notable surge in the popularity of conscious fashion. Consequently, consumers now prioritise clothing brands that emphasise sustainability, ethical sourcing, and transparent supply chains. This trend marks a significant shift in the fashion industry towards more responsible and mindful consumption.

What does conscious fashion mean?

These days, we often hear terms like “conscious fashion” or “sustainable fashion” more frequently as we become more aware of clothing’s environmental impact. But what exactly does conscious fashion mean?

Conscious fashion means clothing made and used sustainably, thereby safeguarding the environment and workers. This involves reducing emissions, limiting overproduction, minimising pollution and waste, promoting biodiversity, and ensuring fair wages and safe working conditions.

Good On You – sustainable & fashion brand rating system

For a product to be deemed Conscious, its brand must receive a favorable score from Good On You. Additionally, their system evaluates a brand’s sustainability practices concerning its effects on People, Animals, and the Planet, assigning a rating on a five-point scale.

Major brands need a minimum score of four out of five; meanwhile, smaller ones need three out of five. Sustainability ratings rely on public data like industry standards, certifications, assessments, and self-disclosure.

How to keep your wardrobe sustainable?

Given the numerous factors at play, there are still not enough brands addressing all these intricate issues. Even the ones that do acknowledge that there’s always room to do better. This means just buying items labeled as “sustainable” isn’t sufficient; we must entirely reconsider how we shop for and use clothing.

So, if you want to make sure your wardrobe is as sustainable as it can be from now on, here’s what you need to know.

1. Buy less, buy better

Before making a purchase, always question if it’s truly necessary: What’s the purpose of buying it? Do you genuinely need it? Will you wear it at least 30 times?

You have the option to buy cheaper, disposable items. However, this often leads to frequent replacements, increased spending, and more waste in landfills. On the other hand, investing in high-quality items that you can repair and maintain leads to less waste and greater savings over time.

2. Support conscious fashion brands

Purchasing better can also involve backing retailers that advocate for sustainable practices, such as Farfetch, Net-a-Porter, and P.E Nation AU, which incorporate up-cycled textiles into specific product lines.

Focusing your search for particular items can be beneficial too. Whether you’re looking for brands that produce active wear sustainably, like Lorna Jane; swimwear, like Speedo, or organic cotton clothing like Culture Kings and G-Star.

3. Invest in pre-owned and vintage

With secondhand and vintage options becoming more available on sites like Vestiaire Collective and Farfetch, consider buying pre-owned items to expand your wardrobe.

The benefit of investing in pre-owned and vintage is twofold: you can reduce waste by giving new life to existing items, prolonging their lifespan, while also uncovering unique pieces that add character to your style.

4. Be conscious of your materials

Being conscious of materials is crucial in making sustainable choices. By understanding how materials are sourced, produced, and disposed of, you can make informed decisions that minimise harm to the planet and support ethical practices.

Avoid synthetic fabrics like polyester, which contribute to pollution and degrade slowly due to their fossil fuel origin. Pay attention to natural materials marketed as carbon positive. For example, organic cotton requires much less water than conventional cotton and avoids the use of harmful pesticides.

5. Question the source of your clothes

As the fashion industry’s reach extends worldwide, its supply chain, with multiple layers, remains intricate and unclear. Moreover, thanks to trade openness and ongoing cost pressures, only a few brands own the factories where their products are made. Instead, many businesses contract out the final production.

It’s crucial that those who make our clothes get fair pay and work in safe conditions. Therefore, look for brands that share details about their factories and their rules on wages and working conditions.

6. Reduce water usage

To reduce water usage in the fashion industry, several steps can be taken. Firstly, adopting more sustainable production methods such as using water-saving technologies and recycling wastewater can significantly bring down water consumption. Secondly, opting for materials that require less water to produce, such as organic cotton or hemp, can also help reduce the industry’s water footprint.

As mentioned previously, Organic cotton requires less water compared to conventional cotton. By promoting healthier soil and minimising chemical inputs, its cultivation conserves water and reduces environmental impact.

7. Look after your clothes

It’s essential to prolong the lifespan of your clothes to reduce their environmental impact. Follow care instructions on the labels, such as washing in cold water and avoiding harsh detergents. Also, make sure your clothes stay in good condition by avoiding excessive washing, thereby reducing CO2 emissions and water usage.

To prevent them from filling up landfill sites after only a few uses, repair your clothes instead of discarding them. By practicing proper care and maintenance, you can extend the lifespan of your clothes and reduce the need for frequent replacements.

8. Give your clothes a second life

Consider donating clothes to charity, selling online, or joining clothing swaps for a sustainable second life. Alternatively, you can also repurpose old garments into new items or up-cycle them into different products.

Seek out clothing recycling programs for items too worn-out to repair or reuse. By extending clothes’ lifespan creatively, you not only reduce waste but also support conscious fashion.

conscious fashion

Photo by Karina Tess from Unsplash.

Introducing Conscious Product Lines from Farfetch

What makes a Fashion Product Conscious on

To receive Farfetch Conscious label, a product must meet one or more of the sustainability criteria listed.

Conscious Clothing Menconscious menswear


Conscious Shoes Menconscious menshoes


Conscious Clothing Womenconscious womensear


Conscious Shoes Women

conscious women shoesFor more conscious fashion articles, check out Farfetch Fashion Feed


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