How can fashion companies and brands around the world develop sustainability strategies to address climate change?
Sustainability is not a trendy word or trend in the fashion industry. It is now a necessity. Leading fashion brands are changing their business strategies to ensure sustainability. There are increasing environmental and social issues, finite resources, and the living standards for thousands of workers and residents. Many fashion brands are adopting more sustainable production methods. These include using eco-conscious materials, reducing waste, and using less water, chemicals, and energy. Some are looking for ways to extend the life of their products and use upcycling and recycling to make new garments.
Consumers are increasingly concerned about the environment and social aspects of their purchase decisions. Shoppers will be more inclined to purchase from brands that share their values and ethically produce their products. Fashion brands, from Shein and Boohoo through H&M to Levi’s, are creating campaigns to share information about their sustainability initiatives and strategies.
Fashion companies who have built their business on newness and driving more sales may find that a public campaign promoting sustainable practices can cause more harm than good. Fashion companies should not just promote a collection made with sustainable materials. They should empower and educate their customers. Genuine sustainable claims are transparent, specific, and honest. They help consumers make better purchasing decisions. Fashion companies can build trust and loyalty by sharing their knowledge and being more transparent about their supply chains and practices. Patagonia, an outdoor brand, launched “Everything But the Teeth” in 2019. It highlighted their sustainability journey and the work that was required before the jacket could be fully recycled. The brand didn’t just sell their jacket; it was transparent and determined to educate its customers.
Lenzing, a fibre manufacturer, is another fashion brand that has a history of running campaigns that educate consumers. The company’s TENCEL(tm brand aims to set a new standard in sustainable production and assist other fashion brands as well as stakeholders on their sustainability journey. The company’s #MakeItFeelRight campaign aims to increase awareness among consumers, who may not be familiar with sustainable production but want to learn more. #MakeItFeelRight invites people to share their sustainable fashion journey on Instagram and Tik Tok. #MakeItFeelRight is supported by sustainable information powered Lenzing. It encourages people use their voices to change purchasing habits. This movement provides information on everything, from care labels to recycling, to the benefits of second-hand buying, eco-conscious fibers, how to prolong garments’ lives, and more. This movement encourages consumers to support brands that actively contribute to a sustainable future. It also highlights the power of partnerships with brands and influencers. One Tree Planted is a key part of the #MakeItFeelRight campaign. Every pledge made by a consumer to support the global effort to reforestation to combat climate change will result in a tree being planted.
Fashion companies can have a dialogue with their customers and educate them about their sustainability practices by creating educational, thoughtful and honest campaigns. Fashion companies and their consumers should, as with #MakeItFeelRight, take action and make a pledge to make the world a better place.