How We Rate Fashion Brands

How do you know if a brand is as sustainable as it claims? You simply check Good On You—the source for fashion’s most trusted sustainability ratings. Today, millions of shoppers, major retailers, and tech platforms use Good On You to compare brands’ impacts on people, planet, and animals. Here’s how we rate brands on the issues that matter most to you.

How the ratings system works

Good On You’s brand ratings give you the power to see through the sustainability spin on everything from greenhouse gas emissions and water use to worker safety and living wages. How does it work? We bring together the world’s leading and most reliable sources of information on sustainability and present it in clear and accessible ratings anyone can comprehend.

Transparent data sources

Everything we do is based on transparency, starting with the data we source.
Our ratings tech and independent analysts compile and verify the most robust third-party indices (like the Fashion Transparency Index and CDP Climate Change and Water Security projects) and certifications/accreditations (like Fair Trade, Fair Wear Foundation, Cradle to Cradle, OEKO-TEX Made in Green, and the Global Organic Textile Standard), as well as brands’ own public reporting.

Transparency promotes accountability. It’s crucial in shaping regulations and keeping brands to their promises. That’s why we only use publicly available information. It’s fundamental to consumer rights that brands accurately and consistently report on their impacts. As a consumer, you have a right to know how brands impact on the issues you care about most. This is one of the many ways Good On You’s ratings support the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Most trusted methodology

Good On You’s ratings are comprehensive—considering impacts throughout the entire supply chain from raw materials to a product’s end of use. Altogether, we evaluate 500-plus data points across more than 100 key issues, indicators, and standards systems to arrive at each brand’s score. We weight third party sources according to their scope and the quality of their assurance ie how well they ensure brands comply with the standards that have been set.

Using our proprietary tech, Good On You analysts evaluate each brand with our rigorous methodology, which we developed in collaboration with industry experts, academics, and organisations (like Fashion Revolution, Fashion for Good, and Four Paws). Materiality is key—meaning we assess issues based on what’s most important and impactful. Our methodology also distinguishes between large and small brands based on annual turnover or parent companies. We proportionately apply more demanding standards to large brands as they inherently have greater impacts and influence.

Easy-to-use ratings

Whether you’re comparing brands on the Good On You app, browsing global retailers like Farfetch and Afterpay, or searching on Microsoft Bing, our ratings give you the information you need to confidently support the brands who are leading the way.

Key issues we rate brands on

We believe you have a right to know where and how your clothes are made——who produces them, what they’re made from, how workers are treated, and what environmental impact the products have across their life cycles.

The fashion industry’s supply chains mean sustainability issues are inherently complex. To help you focus on what matters most, we organise the material issues into three overarching areas: people, planet, and animals.

People

The “People” rating assesses brands’ impact on workers across the supply chain. This includes policies and practices on child labour, forced labour, worker safety, freedom of association (ie the right to join a union), gender equality, diversity, and payment of a living wage. We consider how well brands ensure that their policies are implemented, answering essential questions like: Do they empower workers, have supportive supplier relationships, and conduct meaningful audits? Do their policies protect workers from the impacts of COVID-19 and public health crises? Are workers treated and compensated fairly? Do they avoid sourcing from areas with high risk of modern slavery, such as cotton from Xin Jiang?

Planet

The United Nations estimates that the fashion industry is responsible for 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions—and emissions are only one way that fashion production, consumption, and waste negatively affect the world around us. For the “Planet” rating, we dig deep into brands’ environmental policies to help you see through the pervasive greenwashing. We consider each brand’s resource use and waste management, including the types of materials they use, the sustainability of their business model, their product durability, commitment to circularity, and their textile waste practices. We investigate their policies to address energy use and carbon emissions, impacts on water, biodiversity, microfibre pollution, deforestation, and chemical use and disposal.

Animals

Whether you’re looking for cruelty-free and vegan fashion or simply concerned about animal welfare within fashion’s supply chain, then pay attention to our “Animals” rating. We consider brands’ animal welfare policies and, when applicable, how well brands trace their animal products. We identify and mark down brands that use fur, angora, and “exotic” animal skin We consider wool use, including ‘mulesing’ and whether and how the brand uses leather, down and other animal materials. We also look to see whether the brand has made commitments to reduce the quantity of animal products, and ensure that the animal welfare policy has clear mechanisms of implementation

Within each of these areas, we also consider whether brands take positive steps such as providing industry leadership on issues or whether they engage in “negative citizenship” like lobbying against legislation to increase transparency or reduce harm.

For more information please download our ratings guide.

Rating scale

Brands receive an overall score, which is based on an average of their score in the key areas—people, planet, and animals

Great

These brands demonstrate leadership in all three areas. They are typically very transparent and have both strong policies and strong assurance (eg from relevant certifications or standards systems) to address the most material issues across their supply chain.

Good

These brands adopt policies and practices to manage multiple material issues across their supply chain and often demonstrate leadership in one or more areas.

It's a Start

These brands are transparent about their policies and practices to manage some material issues and are making good progress on one or more of them.

Not Good Enough

These brands disclose some information in one or more areas and consider some material issues but do not yet adequately address the impacts across their supply chain.

We Avoid

These brands disclose little to no relevant or concrete information about their sustainability practices. In some cases, the brand may make ambiguous claims that are unlikely to have a material impact.

Rated Good On You

For a brand to be recognised as “Rated Good On You” they need to be rated “Good” or “Great” on our rating system. Look out for our “Rated Good On You” stamp when you’re browsing online stores to know you are shopping your values.

If you are a brand that would like to be listed on Good On You please first review our “How We Rate” page, and if you wish to proceed use this form to start the rating process.

If you are a brand already rated “Good” or “Great”, find out how you can promote your rating.

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