Social Responsibility


Sustainable Fashion Principles

No Forced Labor | There shall be absolutely no use of involuntary or forced labor, whether indentured, bonded, prison or otherwise.

No Child Labor | No person shall be employed before reaching the legal age of adulthood.

No Harassment or Abuse | All employees shall be treated with respect and dignity. No employee shall be subject to physical, sexual, psychological or verbal harassment or abuse.

No Discrimination | No person shall be subject to any discrimination in employment, including hiring, salary, benefits, advancement, discipline, termination or retirement, or on the basis of gender, race, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, nationality, political opinion or social or ethnic origin.

Health and Safety | Employers shall provide a safe and healthy working environment to prevent accidents and injury to health arising out of, linked with or occurring in the course of work, or as a result of the operation of employer facilities. Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining | Employers shall recognize and respect the right of employee’s freedom of association and collective bargaining, such as the creation of unions and employee representation committees.

Wages and Benefits | Employers must recognize that wages are essential to meeting employee’s basic needs. Employers shall pay employees, as a floor, at least the required minimum wage and shall provide legally mandated benefits.

Hours of Work and Compensation | In addition to their compensation for regular hours of work, employees shall be compensated for overtime hours at such a premium rate as is legally required in the country of manufacture, and not work overtime above the legally allowed number of hours per week.

Environmental Protection | Vendors shall comply with all applicable environmental laws and regulations. In addition, we proactively select and work with vendors that use higher standards than those enforced locally. This translates into the use of recycled and organic materials, the use of low-impact dyes, energy conservation in manufacturing facilities, and various other specific actions.

Other Laws | Vendors shall comply with all applicable laws and regulations, including those pertaining to the manufacture, pricing, sale and distribution of merchandise, as well as voluntary industry standards.


Certified Organic Cotton

Organic cotton, unlike its non-organic counterpart, is produced pesticide-free. While pesticides effectively rid crops of bugs, rodents and other animals, they also contain harmful chemicals which can seep into the soil and groundwater. Insects and smaller animals typically ingest these chemicals, often causing sickness or death and disruption to the area food chain. Even trace amounts of pesticides can be lethal, which is why it takes five years to obtain organic certification and why we’ll only use certified organic cotton for our 100% Organic Cotton fabric 

June 2009: Artesia Agricultural Science Center. (photo by Jesse Ramirez)


Eco-Heather and Eco-Fleece

Our Eco-Heather and Eco-Fleecefabrics take the most innovative approach of our eco-friendly offerings, knitting organic cotton with recycled polyester and rayon to create a material like no other. Eco-fi polyester is made from used bottles which are ground into tiny flakes, extruded into a fiber, and infused into polyester threads. Our rayon comes from plant cellulose, a sustainable source of raw materials. It’s important to note that both Eco-Heather and Eco-Fleece are developed using a mixture of recycled and organic threads alongside traditional ones in order to preserve our signature vintage softness.



Wash and Dye Methods

As part of our unique eco-difference, all Alternative Earth styles are created with low-impact dyes and natural wash methods, as well as biodegradable fabric softeners and natural enzymes for finishing. The dyes used for Alternative Earth do not contain heavy metals or toxic substances and have a high fixation (or absorption) rate, which means using less dye to generate our colors. Our vendor’s dyehouses perform frequent inspections in order to check all equipment and sample water and filtration residue for any toxins.


With apparel, it’s simple: we can all make a difference with what we wear.

To learn more about certification principles and factory audits visit .

Worldwide Responsible Apparel Production, visit

For more information about Fair Trade, visit

Fair Labor Association (FLA) Workplace Code of Conduct



 H&M Kicks Up CSR Business Values with Exclusive Conscious Collection and Fashion Against AIDS

We recently covered H&M’s CSR business initiative run in collaboration with Marni in support of Red Cross Japan earthquake relief and now the fast-fashion giant are launching two lines that reaffirm the company’s commitment to walking the talk. The retail clothing conglomerate, whose buyer can be seen on NBC’s Fashion Star, is launching two socio-environmental clothing lines this spring including a new spin on their annual Conscious Collection and an expansion on their Fashion Against AIDS line.

H&M’s Conscious Collection initially launched in 2011 and represents its sustainable fashion ethos but what makes this year’s collection different is that they have added an Exclusive capsule line within the Conscious Collection that is specifically made for galas, red carpets and other glamorous events. The collection is made from organic cotton and hemp as well as recycled polyester and demonstrates the variety that is now possible in upscale green fashion with styles reflecting today’s red carpet diversity. The collection has already gained A-list celebrity attention with Amanda Seyfried wearing their blue tuxedo blazer and shorts at a London premiere, Oscar nominee Viola Davis sporting the hot-pink sleeveless top and skirt and Kristin Davis wearing the apple green embroidered dress to a Vanity Fair event. Even Oscar-winners Michelle Williams wore an H&M sustainable black and gold gown to the BAFTAs in London this year and Natalie Portmanchose a $50.00 H&M creation to an Oscar event last year.


Images courtesy of

Momentum for a sustainable upscale fashion line has been building since Colin Firth’s wife Livia put forth the Green Carpet Challenge for stars to wear eco-fashions this past award season and H&M have certainly taken the challenge to heart. Even though this line is gaining media and celebrity attention, H&M have ensured the pieces remain accessible to the average consumer looking for that special something with the pieces ranging in price from $19.99 for a top to $299 for a floor length gown. According to H&M’s Conscious Actions Sustainability Report, the company is “the number one user of organic cotton in the world and that they’ve donated 2.3 million garments to charitable causes.

H&M Conscious Collection is an excellent example of their consummate approach to CSR business programs which tend to combine responsible practices, spreading awareness for an associated cause and raising funds in support that same cause. The company’s Fashion Against AIDS line is another example of this approach as it too ticks all their CSR business boxes.

Fashion Against Aids will launch tomorrow, April 26th, 2012, in Canada and in over 300 H&M locations worldwide. The line features prints that H&M commissioned from international artists and illustrators solely for this collection. Twenty-five percent of the proceeds from the purchase price of every item in the line will go directly to fund youth HIV/AIDS prevention, education and awareness organizations, including: Designers Against AIDS (DAA), YouthAIDS, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and MTV Staying Alive Foundation. The Fashion Against AIDS line first launched in 2008 and has since raised over $6.5 for these projects.

H&M’s Head of Design Ann-Sofie Johansson has said, “I love this year’s Fashion Against AIDS collection. It brings together so many global styles that send not only a powerful fashion message, but also help spread the word about HIV/AIDS awareness. It’s great that the collection includes the work of artists and illustrators from many different countries, helping us to raise funds for these vital youth HIV/AIDS charities.”

You don’t have to purchase a piece of clothing to support H&M’s Fashion Against AIDS as the company will also donate $1.00 for every make-out/kiss photo uploaded to their gallery so pucker up, grab your partner and do your part. Of course another way to support this program is to wear a condom and spread the word to others to do the same as well.

H&M believe Fashion Against AIDS is not about sexual preferences – it’s about love and that’s why they have included gay couples in their adverts so a big standing O for that. Say what you want about H&M as they may not get everything right 100% of the time but you can’t deny that they get more right than most and we’d be better off with more like ‘em.

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