The Question We Should Be Asking When Making Purchases: Who Made My Clothes?

By Courtney Jones

Happy fashion revolution week babes! This week is all about asking, “who is behind my clothes.” It’s about understanding the impact you have on someone else’s life when you buy clothes.

We believe it is crazy important to ask who is behind our clothes but we also think there are other important questions you should be asking. So we have devised a list of important questions you should be asking when making clothing purchases, or really any type of purchase. The more you ask these questions and really think about the answers, the more going to fast fashion retailers isn’t even going to be an option anymore.

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  1. Where was this manufactured?

We all know at this point that the who behind almost every piece of clothing is going to be a woman. 85-90% of sweatshop workers are women. But where is she from? It’s going to be hard to determine how she may have been treated without asking this next vital question.

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  1. Does the price of the item make sense?

Can we all be real with ourselves and own up to the fact that a $5 t-shirt is likely not made with the makers in mind? Even when the price does make sense, are you paying for the shirt or the label? All you millenials out there remember Hollister and Abercrombie. That stuff was pricey, but I can guarantee you it was not made ethically.  

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  1. How was this made?

Can you determine what kind of dyes were used, if the cotton or other material is organic? Water pollution is a big problem in the fashion industry, not to mention how much water is needed in the first place. The average pair of blue jeans uses 3,625 liters of water. We’ve got to ask, what are the environmental impacts this brand is creating?

Ethical fashion is not the new black- it's article 23 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights!, penned by Amanda Busher, founder of New Left.-11

  1. What is the impact of this article of clothing?

Are proceeds going to an organization? Are the makers being positively affected? Is there any indication to the amount of waste being caused by production? Does the company care? Usually if you can’t find the information you’re looking for on a company’s website than they don’t want you to know. But we have to ask these hard questions. We have to demand for answers.

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If you want to go even deeper with these questions, Fashion Revolution uses The Fashion Transparency Index 2017 reviews to determine how brands rank in regards to what they disclose about their suppliers, practices, and their impact.

We encourage you to ask the big questions, and to demand answers. You want to know how your food is processed, how your lotions and face creams are made, so start asking the same about the clothes that you are wearing. Your clothes tell the world a story, so make it a good one, an impactful one. Join the fashion revolution! 

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