3 Questions That Will Help You Avoid the Black Friday Hype - Good On You
23 Nov

3 Questions That Will Help You Avoid the Black Friday Hype

On Friday the 27th of November, the world will once again fall under the Black Friday spell. Originally an American phenomenon, Black Friday and its online cousin Cyber Monday have since spread their tendrils across the globe. We want to help you avoid the hype, and embrace ethical consumerism this year and every year!

Hailed as the biggest shopping event of the year, in 2019, the holiday saw 93.2 million buyers shopping online. While Thanksgiving and Black Friday are still the busiest shopping days for stores, foot traffic has declined in the past couple of years: online shopping sales hit $7.4 billion last year, an all-time high.

The name Black Friday carries with it many negative connotations, such as crowds of frenzied shoppers pushing, shoving, and injuring each other to grab more stuff they don’t actually need, highlighting one of the ugly sides of (literally) fast fashion.

It’s especially disheartening when you consider that a large proportion of new clothing purchased around the world soon makes its way to landfill. Globally, 80% of discarded textiles are doomed for landfill or incineration after an average of only 7 wears. In the US, the EPA has estimated that shoppers throw away at least 13 million tons of clothes each year. In fact, consumers in North America are purchasing (and wasting) fives times as much clothing as they did 25 years ago!

It’s so easy, and so human, to feel some major FOMO when you’re surrounded by messages claiming that you need to take advantage of these amazing deals on items that will make your life better. Give yourself the gift of taking a moment to shift from unconscious to conscious consumer. Before you reach for your wallet, ask yourself these three questions:

1. How much do I already own?

2. How much will I wear it?

3. How long will it last?

After careful consideration, you may find that you don’t really need any new stuff after all. If you do still want to buy new, empower yourself to make ethical choices. Resisting the impulse to buy loads of cheap items in favour of investing in quality pieces not only makes your look more streamlined, it also reduces the amount you consume and spend overall.

Even a gorgeously tailored black dress isn’t worth much to you if you already have 10 just like it. A $15 t-shirt is no bargain if it’s worn out after a few washes. And those jeans on sale aren’t worth $40 if you’ll wear them just twice before consigning them to the back of your closet

Marc Bain

Make sure to choose something from a brand having a positive impact on the planet and its inhabitants. You can use the free Good On You app or the directory to check the labour, environment, and animal ratings for over 2,500 fashion brands. You can also find exclusive offers on ethical brands all year round, which is especially helpful for those of us who can have trouble affording new ethical fashion!

Some brands recognise the damage of events like Black Friday on conscious consumerism, and go out of their way to fight against the tide. Here is a selection of eco-initiatives worth supporting:

MUD Jeans

Rated: Great

Dutch denim brand MUD Jeans is all about sustainability. Not only does it offer a repair service, it also provides a rental service where you can lease a pair of jeans for up to a year! MUD Jeans uses a combination of GOTS certified organic cotton and post-consumer recycled cotton. This Friday, MUD Jeans will be shutting down its online shop and replacing it with a livestream from its office in which customers can purchase the vintage collection. The proceeds will go to Justdiggit.

See the rating.

Support MUD Jeans.

Shop MUD Jeans @ Labell-D.

Citizen Wolf

Rated: Great

For the last 2 years, Citizen Wolf has been running ‘Black Fridye’, an annual event aiming to end disposable fashion by hijacking the Black Friday sales/news cycle to make it simple to love your clothes longer by dyeing them black—same dopamine hit with 95% less carbon.

See the rating.

Shop Citizen Wolf.

TAMGA Designs

Rated: Great
woman reclining is orange pattern sustainable top by TAMGA Designs

Every year when the internet is flooded with Black Friday deals, TAMGA Designs puts the spotlight on an ecosystem in crisis and the people who are fighting to protect it. Its partners at the Sumatran Orangutan Society (S.O.S.) are protecting and restoring the critically endangered Leuser Ecosystem in Indonesia. This globally important ecosystem is home to critically endangered species including the Sumatran orangutan and Sumatran tiger, and it’s being destroyed by demand for palm oil and wood pulp for clothing manufacturing. 20% of sales made that day will go to restoring the Sumatran rainforest.

See the rating.

Support TAMGA Designs.


Rated: Good

ARTICLE22 embodies the innovation that the fashion industry needs more of—using recycled materials to produce beautiful globally-marketable products, while equipping locals artisans with new skill sets and providing them with a sustainable source of income. ARTICLE22 will be participating in GivingTuesday, a global generosity movement unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world.

See the rating.

Support ARTICLE22.

O My Bag

Rated: Good

O My Bag merges style and a responsible approach, creating vintage inspired, rugged-chic bags made from eco-friendly, high quality materials. The label also uses low impact and non-toxic dyes in its products. Last year, O My Bag donated revenue to building three brickfields schools in India. This year, it’s encouraging OMB customers to return their pre-loved O My Bags. It will then re-sell them online and all revenue will go towards its Black Friday Fund. In addition to this, all profits from regular sales will also be donated.

See the rating.

Support O My Bag.


Rated: Good

Naz is a Portuguese fashion brand that aims to make fashion look good, not only on you, but on the planet, too. This brand is inspired by modern life, creating garments that are consistent with an individual, more minimalist and conscious lifestyle. This Black Friday, 10% of all sales of beanies and scarves will revert to the Portuguese NGO Just a Change. Its goal is to raise 500€ to rehabilitate the thermal isolation of a roof, but with everyone’s help, it can go much further!

See the rating.

Support Naz.

Funky Kalakar

Rated: Good
sustainable bags by ethical brand funky kalakar

Funky Kalakar brings alive the stories of ancient craft in the form of contemporary vegan shoe and handbag designs by handcrafting them using natural materials. This year, instead of purchasing new products, Funky Kalakar is encouraging you to reuse, recycle, and upcycle, and Go Zero. Go Zero is Funky Kalakar’s circular fashion initiative, where the brand collects the old and worn-out accessories or shoes that have been delivered to them to upcycle or recycle and give them a new life.

See the rating.

Support Funky Kalakar.


Rated: Great
woman wearing navy kuyichi shirt

On a day that revolves around taking as much as possible, Kuyichi wants to turn things around and give something extra to people who really need it. That’s why Kuyichi will donate 20% of its Black Friday sales directly to the food bank heroes of its hometown, Utrecht.

See the rating.

Support Kuyichi.

Shop Kuyichi @ Staiy.


Rated: Good

Afends is a Byron Bay based fashion brand leading the way in organic hemp fashion, using renewable energy in its supply chain to reduce its climate impact. Afends is doing Green Friday this year and donating a percentage of sales to the Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife. Customers will also receive a certificate with their name and individual impact.

See the rating.

Support Afends.

Whimsy + Row

Rated: Good

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, sustainable woman. By limiting each garment to short runs, Whimsy + Row utilises deadstock fabric, reduces packaging waste, and takes care of precious water resources. This year, it’s also doing its own Green Friday, planting 1 tree with every purchase with One Tree Planted. The brand will also join Giving Tuesday and will be donating 10% of proceeds to No Kid Hungry.

See the rating.

Support Whimsy + Row.

Organic Basics

Rated: Great

During Black Friday you can help Organic Basics convert a traditional cotton field into a regenerative one. In partnership with WWF-World Wide Fund for Nature, for every order placed, it’ll donate 10€ towards its regenerative cotton project in Büyük Menderes, Turkey. Each order will help the brand convert 5m2 of land from conventional cotton farming into regenerative cotton farming.

See the rating.

Support Organic Basics.


Rated: Good

unspun is creating a denim world that reduces global carbon emissions by 1% through a zero-inventory and low waste process. Nothing at unspun will be on sale this Black Friday, and it will donate proceeds from that day to Greenpeace.

See the rating.

Support unspun.


Rated: Good

OhSevenDays was started by Australian-Canadian Megan Mummery to promote slow fashion and the “power of circularity”. Based in Istanbul, the brand reclaims end-of-roll fabrics from the city’s garment factories and creates sharp, everyday womenswear that’s as wearable as it is ethical. Essentially, it makes slow fashion from fast fashion’s leftovers! The brand will be taking part in Fashion Revolution’s campaign this year, where instead of running a Black Friday sale, it’s donating 5% of profits to Fashion Revolution!

See the rating.

Support OhSevenDays.


Rated: Good
man wearing black asket t-shirt

ASKET has been creating timeless wardrobe essentials since 2015 with revolutionary sizing and fair pricing. The brand disregards seasonal collections, cuts out all the middlemen, and only sells directly to you—putting its entire focus on building a single permanent collection. Like every year, ASKET is closing its shop on Black Friday, and redirecting people to its garment care information to encourage care of what you have rather than buying new.

See the rating.

Support ASKET.


Rated: Good
sustainably green t-shirt by ethical brand NIKIN

If you’re the kind of person who likes to wear their morals, look no further. Normally one tree is planted for every NIKIN item purchased, but this year, like every year, NIKIN will be championing Green Friday by planting two trees instead! “Instead of participating in the discount battles, we prefer to double the positive impact on the environment”. That’s the kind of impact we can get behind.

See the rating.

Support NIKIN.


Rated: Good

For the second year Womsh will not take part in the Black Friday with discounts on the products on the e-commerce. We will instead donate the 25% of the sales revenue of the week end 27th-29th of November to One Tree Planted, a non-governmental organisation for the forest protection.

See the rating.

Support Womsh.

Fair Wear’s Fair Friday

Fair Wear is creating a brand new story for the fashion industry this Black Friday, together with their sustainable member brands, including Armedangels and Mini Rodini, they’re combining their reach to promote an alternative view of Black Friday—Fair Friday! Their message? “If you’re shopping today, shop consciously: buy fair clothing!” #peoplefriendlyfashion

Support Fair Friday.


Let’s work together to reduce the impact of the fashion industry by going into this year’s shopping season with a conscience—or even better, avoiding it altogether.

Editor's note

Feature image via Unsplash, 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 more than 2,500 brands. We may earn a commission on sales made using our offer codes or affiliate links.

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