The Earth Day Initiatives 16 Fashion Brands Are Launching This Year
This month officially marks Earth Day's 50th birthday. Since the holiday's inception in the early '70s, the clock has been ticking for industries to incorporate planet-first practices into their business models. With the profound impact the textile industry has on the planet, reform is pivotal to stopping climate change. Increasingly, brands small and large are shifting their plans — whether by achieving the coveted zero-waste status or helping to keep our oceans clean — in the right direction. This year, a number of fashion brands are launching Earth Day initiatives and even announcing larger sustainability goals for their brands.
And, while this year's festivities might look a little different from home, designers like Nomasei and Theory are still finding ways to expand on their missions — and getting involved has never been easier. Take, for example, Ref's partnership with thredUp, which allows you to donate clothes in exchange for real shopping credit, to be used on their site. Or, to get informed, browse Salvatore Ferragamo's online Sustainable Thinking Exhibition, which examines the intersection between fashion and environment over the past century. With tons to sift through, TZR rounded up all the best brands — big and small — that are making radical strides to move the needle forward, today and every day.
Continue below, and be sure to browse their full sites for more on their eco-friendly missions:
Ref's commitment to green practices is far from new. In the brand's radically transparent way, Ref will be disclosing their Q1 sustainability report on Earth Day. Additionally, the brand is offering everyone a range of ways people can make a difference while in quarantine — including donating your clothes to thredUp (which is returned with Ref shopping credit).
The new luxury footwear brand is revving up its sustainable practices as it grows. Going forward, it will be donating a portion of all proceeds year-round to 1% For The Planet, as well as opening a new production facility dedicated to sustainability, including a rainwater recovery system, LED lighting and so much more.
4. Kenneth Cole
This American heritage brand is launching a footwear line specifically for Earth Day, entitled "Resource." The brand revisited each part of three signature footwear styles, swapping out previous materials and opting for overstock, rubber grindings and recycled laces.
5. Still Here
The brand that was picked up by Barney's while still a homegrown project is known for its enduring sustainable roots. Utilizing upcycled, deadstock and BCI-certified fabrics, they're working to become more and more resourceful with each new collection — and its Spring/Summer 2020 line is the most "green" yet.
Madewell's Do Well initiative has the lofty goal of being 100 percent carbon neutral by 2030, and their commitments don't stop there. Going a step further, they're rolling plans to ensure that 100% of fibers and packaging are sustainably sourced and free of virgin plastics, as well as having 90% of denim Fair Trade Certified. The push starts with sustainable goods in this specialized section of their e-shop, including the tie-dyed jean jacket below.
8. Banana Republic
Through its "Better Republic" campaign, the brand is upping recycled fabric use, reducing water impact and creating all-around more eco-friendly denim. You can shop these well-intentioned goods through the Better Shop, which includes pieces like the high-rise flare jeans below.
9. Ralph Lauren
In honor of Earth Day, Ralph Lauren is expanding its Earth Polo collection, a twist on the iconic polo shirt that is made from plastic bottles and dyed without water. The initiative builds on the brand's initiatives launched last year to send zero waste to landfills by 2023, and a 20 percent reduction in water usage across operations as well as using 170 million plastic bottles by 2025.
10. Indigo Swimwear
Doubling-down on its year-long contributions to green organizations, this sustainable swim brand is donating 70 percent of all sales through Earth Day (April 22) to the Surfrider Foundation, which is dedicated to keeping our oceans clean. Their latest collection is made with ECONYL yarn, a regenerated and sustainable nylon.
Handmade by artisans worldwide BEMBIEN's bags are always intentional — and, still, their latest Jolene Collection is extra-special. Made entirely from recycled plastic lifted from the beaches of Bali, you can rest assured that your purchase is doing its part around the world.
Theory plans to make its signature textures 100 percent traceable by the year 2025, while keeping the brand's exceptional quality intact. The brand's "Good collection" displays their most sustainable wares into one place, with fibers sourced from eco-friendly fabric mills.
Mangrove trees are super efficient at storing carbon — so, for each product sold (and there are no exceptions), PANGAIA will be planting 1 mangrove tree with SeaTrees, which stores 1 ton of CO2.
14. Salvatore Ferragamo
The late Salvatore Ferragamo was a pioneer in utilizing refurbished materials, making it a natural part of the brand's DNA to do so. Their updated espadrilles, which boast an innovative sustainable suede, are no exception. What's more: the brand just unveiled their Sustainable Thinking Exhibition at Museo Salvatore Ferragamo in Florence, which is currently available online to explore from home.