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12 Oct

9 More Sustainable Alternatives to Zara You Should Know About

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Zara may be one of the largest retailers of trendy fashion in the world, but it’s “Not Good Enough” for people, the planet, and animals. Discover nine more sustainable alternatives to Zara.

More accessible? Yes. Responsible? Not quite

Many people credit Zara with perfecting the art of fast fashion. It is a pioneer of super-fast turnaround times from design, manufacture, order, and distribution. Its twice-weekly drops of new lines that quickly sell out—creating a sense of urgency to buy—got many of us hooked on shopping for entertainment’s sake. Zara has been a key driver of the massive, wasteful, polluting, exploiting, and unsustainable fashion industry we have today: not exactly a legacy to be proud of.

Zara gets a rating of “Not Good Enough” from us. It has introduced some measures to put its business on a better path, such as the Closing the Loop program, and publishes a detailed list of suppliers. However, it’s not nearly enough and Zara’s business model can never be truly sustainable. Promoting such rapid consumption is inherently harmful to both people and the planet.

That’s why we’ve listed a few of our favourite “Good” and “Great” brands that between them cover all bases in terms of reliable wardrobe go-to items all while respecting the planet, animals, and the people who make their clothes. Here are nine more ethical brands you’ll love more than Zara.

More sustainable alternatives to Zara

MATE the Label

Rated: Good

MATE the Label creates clean essentials made with GOTS certified organic fabrics and lower-impact dyes. Its goal is to offer women everywhere a clean product that is just as beautiful as it is responsible. It is proudly female-founded and is predominately operated by women. This US brand also manufactures locally to reduce its carbon footprint.

Find the range in inclusive sizes XS-3XL.

See the rating.

Shop MATE the Label.

OMNES

Rated: Good
People in chic styles by responsible womenswear brand OMNES.

OMNES is a more responsible and more affordable UK-based brand creating high quality womenswear. "We created OMNES to help change the way you shop, wear and think about clothing. And to encourage the rest of the industry to do it, too," says the brand.

Find most items in sizes 6-20.

See the rating.

Shop OMNES.

WE-AR4

Rated: Good
People dressed in outfits by We-ar4.

WE-AR4 is a US based design-to-wear essentials brand for an effortless style. Founded by fashion industry veterans, it merges intelligent design and uncompromising style. Rather than developing new materials, it rescues existing ones, choosing to “thrift” high-quality leathers and luxury textiles left over from other brands, giving them new life, and uses certified lower-impact materials.

Find the range in sizes XS-L.

See the rating.

Shop WE-AR4.

Armedangels

Rated: Great

Innovative, responsible, and on-trend. Germany’s Armedangels gets a top score overall from us. The brand covers all the basics in womenswear, menswear, and kidswear. 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 @ Cerqular.

GRAMMAR

Rated: Good

This brand started off selling just white shirts, but expanded into a full range with clever tailoring, creative cuts, and details that mean there’s a shape and style to suit everyone. All GRAMMAR’s clothes are made from responsibly-sourced 100% GOTS certified organic cotton and produced in small batches in New York City.

The range is available in US sizes 0-16.

See the rating.

Shop GRAMMAR @ Rêve en Vert.

Shop GRAMMAR @ Made Trade.

Shop GRAMMAR.

Mila.Vert

Rated: Great

Mila.Vert makes chic, minimalist clothes that have a distinctly modern feel. The Slovenia-based brand produces clothes in small batches based on a pre-order system to minimise waste and help to avoid the ethical and environmental issues that the fashion industry represents.

Find the garments in sizes XS-XL.

See the rating.

Shop Mila.Vert.

Shop Mila.Vert @ Immaculate Vegan.

OhSevenDays

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 responsible. Essentially, it makes slow fashion from fast fashion's leftovers.

OhSevenDays' garments are available in sizes XS-XL, or in custom sizing.

See the rating.

Shop OhSevenDays.

MUD Jeans

Rated: Great
A man wears navy jeans and a blue top

Dutch denim brand MUD Jeans is all about sustainability. Not only does it offer a repair service, but 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.

MUD Jeans are available in a range of sizes, usually from W25 L30-W33 L32 for women and W28 L34-W36 L34 for men.

See the rating.

Shop MUD Jeans.

Kowtow

Rated: Good

Kowtow is a New Zealand brand that uses organic, fair trade cotton and non-toxic dyes to produce its clothes. It designs elegant, timeless womenswear, and also has a range of ceramics.

Find the clothes in sizes XS-L.

See the rating.

Shop Kowtow.

Learn more about Zara’s rating

Editor's note

Feature image via MATE the Label, 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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