14 Apr

9 Sustainable Alternatives to Fashion Nova

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Fashion Nova may be tempting with its huge range at rock bottom prices, but the real price for supporting the brand is being paid by workers and the environment. Luckily, there are ethical and sustainable alternatives to Fashion Nova.

The issues with Fashion Nova

With 21 million followers on Instagram, Fashion Nova has become one of the fastest-growing women’s clothing lines on the internet. But we can’t help but wonder something: how does the brand and its hyper-production speed impact the planet, people, and animals?

We previously dove into Fashion Nova’s rating in our “How Ethical Is Fashion Nova?” article, but if you want the tl;dr: it’s nothing to write home about. Surprise! But before we give you the alternatives to this ultra fast fashion brand we avoid, let’s have a quick look at exactly why we don’t recommend Fashion Nova. Like, ever.

Fashion Nova rates “Very Poor”, our lowest score, for both the planet and people. It mass produces poor-quality items from cheap materials like polyester, and it doesn’t seem to be taking any meaningful actions to address its impact. None of its supply chain is certified by labour standards that ensure worker health and safety, living wages, or other labour rights, so it’s bad news for workers, too.

It gets our second-lowest score of “Not Good Enough” for animals, but that’s just because it doesn’t use fur, angora, or exotic animal skin or hair. But with no animal welfare policies in sight and products made from leather, feathers, and wool without stating sources, there’s no way to know how its products impact our animal friends.

It should come as no surprise to learn that Fashion Nova receives our lowest score of “We Avoid” overall. It has a lot of work to do across the board and is certainly one to steer clear of for the consumer trying to improve the ethics and sustainability of their closet.

A note on affordability

Good On You wants to help you find sustainable options no matter your budget. But we recognise that many sustainable brands appear more expensive up front. That’s because more goes into a price tag than the cost of fabric. Fast fashion prices are often low because workers are not paid living wages and sustainable practices are not followed in production, as is the case with Fashion Nova.

Fast fashion has also distorted our view of clothing prices. We now spend much less and buy far more low-quality garments than we did a few decades ago. When taking into account cost-per-wear, higher-quality items you’ll wear again and again end up costing less in the long run despite the initial investment.

We aim to highlight the range of more affordable sustainable brands, but we also encourage you to seek out the most sustainable options that work for you. Sometimes this means shopping second hand, other times rediscovering and restyling what you already own.

9 ethical brands you’ll love more than Fashion Nova

These nine brands from around the world may not be as dirt cheap as Fashion Nova, but they are creating high-quality clothes in styles you’ll love. Let’s take a look at some sustainable alternatives to Fashion Nova.

337 BRAND

Rated: Good

337 BRAND's leisurewear is designed to make you feel at ease, always. Inspired by nature, comfort, and kindness, the brand introduces effortless style clothing made from earth-friendly materials. Find the range in sizes XS-L.

See the rating.

Shop 337 BRAND.

CHNGE

Rated: Good
3 images of CHNG's latest collection

CHNGE is a US-based sustainable fashion brand using 100% organic material, built to last a lifetime while making a statement.

Find CHNGE's inclusive clothes in sizes 2XS-4XL.

See the rating.

Shop CHNGE.

Plant Faced Clothing

Rated: Good
3 images of plant faced's latest collection

Streetwear without sweatshops, that's the motto of this British 100% plant-based, ethical, eco-friendly, and cruelty-free streetwear apparel brand.

Buy Plant Faced Clothing in sizes XS-2XL.

See the rating.

Shop Plant Faced Clothing.

Whimsy + Row

Rated: Good

Offers

person lounging in black dress by Whimsy + Row.

Whimsy + Row – Warehouse Sale

With even more reductions, check out your favorites at Whimsy+Row's Warehouse Sale, including overstock, damages and samples. 30%-80% off Warehouse Sale.   (Ends: 5 FEB)

Shop now

Whimsy + Row is an eco-conscious lifestyle brand born out of a love for quality goods and sustainable practices. Since 2014, its mission has been to provide ease and elegance for the modern woman. Whimsy + Row utilises deadstock fabric, and by limiting each garment to short runs, the brand also reduces packaging waste and takes care of precious water resources.

Find most products in XS-XL.

See the rating.

Shop Whimsy + Row.

Shop Whimsy + Row @ Earthkind.

Afends

Rated: Good
3 images of afends' latest collection

Offers

someone in black shirt and bucket hat, with jacket by Afends.

Afends – Menswear

Up to 60% off, for a limited time only. From pants to tees and sweats, featuring a slew of new prints. Exclusive 10% off Mens Sale with code GOODEXTRA10.   (Ends: 28 FEB)

Checkout code: GOODEXTRA10
Shop now
someone in fitted dress and black jacket by Afends.

Afends – Womenswear

Up to 60% off, for a limited time only - including dresses, basics & more. Exclusive 10% off Womens Sale with code GOODEXTRA10.   (Ends: 28 FEB)

Checkout code: GOODEXTRA10
Shop now

Born in Byron Bay, Afends is a responsible brand leading the way in hemp fashion. Drawing inspiration from the environment, streetwear, and surf culture, Afends’ mission is to create more sustainable clothing through innovation, action, and positive change. As true hemp advocates, they purchased 100 acres of farmland called Sleepy Hollow to grow their own hemp crops and ignite the hemp revolution. Explore their range made from 100% eco-conscious threads.

See the rating.

Shop Afends.

Seek Collective

Rated: Good

Seek Collective is a US brand of thoughtfully made items with a dedication to transparency, authenticity, craft, and sustainability. Seek is focused on establishing connections between art, product, consumers, process, and makers. Its items are made in India through partnerships with like-minded communities and people. Find most products in XS-L, with an extended sizing range up to 4XL.

See the rating.

Shop Seek Collective.

Armedangels

Rated: Great

Affordable, ethical, and on-trend. Germany’s Armedangels gets a top score overall from us. The brand covers all the basics for women, men, and kids. Armedangels' quality and long-lasting pieces are made from lower-impact and certified materials, like Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certified cotton. The brand also adopted the Fair Wear Foundation Code of Conduct to protect its workers abroad.

Its products are available in sizes XS-XL.

See the rating.

Shop Armedangels.

Shop Armedangels @ Earthkind.

Shop Armedangels @ Veneka.

Franc

Rated: Good

Franc is a Canadian brand that makes basics so you can enjoy a complete wardrobe built on timeless essentials. The brand ranks 'Good' on all fronts: it uses eco-friendly materials, pays a living wage and uses no animal products. Find most products in sizes XS to 3XL.

See the rating.

Shop Franc.

Girlfriend Collective

Rated: Good
three people wearing ethical activewear by Girlfriend Collective

Girlfriend Collective creates minimal, luxury clothes made with certified fair labour, certified by the Social Accountability Standard International SA8000. The brand uses more eco-friendly materials like recycled polyester as well as low-impact non-toxic dyes and is fully Oeko-Tex Standard 100 certified.

Inclusively sized Girlfriend Collective offers products from 2XS-6XL.

See the rating.

Shop Girlfriend Collective @ LVR Sustainable.

Shop Girlfriend Collective.

Editor's note

Feature image via Afends, all other images via brands mentioned. Good On You publishes the world’s most comprehensive ratings of fashion brands’ impact on people, the planet, and animals. Use our directory to search thousands of rated brands.

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