S for Social Fashion: Discover these 4 brands with a social mission Worldwide


In the backdrop of the current worldwide stark headlines giving a final warning to act upon climate change, getting into environmental activism hits home more than ever. The heavy weight of how much it matters just cannot be ignored no longer. It has become our generation's weapon to end the fashion industry's exploitative ways fuelling the 'see now, buy now' cycle. Opting for brands with a kinder cause is a subtle way of casting your personal vote for change. From toxins-free Technik-leather accessories to artisanal, carbon-neutral eyewear, we've listed 4 conscious, cruelty-free labels that help you get started on greening up your wardrobe, and also connect with a purposeful mission. 


Outland Denim 

Aussie-based jeans label Outland Denim began its jean-crafting journey when founder James Bartle witnessed first hand how human traffickers prey on vulnerable young girls in order to service the sex industry. As a driving-force to end the sexual exploitation of vulnerable girls in Asia, James created the 'Denim Project', which would enable those girls who demonstrated an interest in sewing to put their new skills to use. The optimistic jeans label has expanded its team of seamstresses to offer positions to those at risk of falling into poverty, a contributor to trafficking vulnerability, and has broadened its mission to set a standard for the treatment and remuneration of young female workers in the garment manufacturing industry, and offer them a hopeful safety net. All the jeans are currently carefully assembled in a highly specialised production facility in Cambodia. 

Outland is committed to offering only premium quality denim: that pursuit entails sourcing the most ethically and environmentally sound raw materials, from organic cotton pocket linings to recycled packaging, and endeavours to verify its entire supply chain in alignment with the world's best practices. Why has the brand decided to particularly settle for a staple we wouldn't imagine our everyday without? "I've always lived in jeans. If you were going to produce anything, why wouldn't you produce the most staple part of a person's wardrobe? Jeans aren't a throw-away item, but something you keep for years," says the founder. The key values that permeate through the storyboard of the socially-conscious denim maverick are 'quality', 'responsible' and 'ethical', highlighting the true cornerstones of any socially-responsible business for years to come.

By purchasing a pair of Outland Denim jeans, you can be sure that a young woman somewhere is able to flee a life of abuse and safely settle in a sustainable career path. The true value of supporting brands like Outland Denim does not only lie in the exemplary quality of products made with fine attention to every detail (read: stone-washed premium quality denim staples that last for decades), but it it also revolves around the why we buy: every pair can indeed change someone's life. 


Warby Parker

One of the only carbon-neutral eyewear brands in the world, Warby Parker was founded to offer balance to mainstream designer eyewear's shady quality and the industry's artificially bumped up prices. According to Werby Parker, the secret to glass-making lies in circumventing traditional channels with a dedicated approach of engaging with customers, while offering hefty, high-quality specs at a fraction of the price. Yet what makes the funky frames so special? Operating on a socially-conscious business model, every Warby Parker frame is designed in-house using custom-designed cellulose acetate sourced from a family-run Italian factory to ultra-lightweight titanium. Every frame is also hand-assembled and polished: after raw material is cut into face fronts using a high-tech CNC machine, it's tumbled with wood chips and hand-polished with a German wax compound. The frames are then carefully inspected through a series of quality checks. As a final touch, the custom-cut and polished frames are treated with anti-reflective and anti-scratch coatings.

Stating that almost one billion people worldwide lack access to glasses, the eyewear label has become renown for its 'buy a pair, get a pair' initiative. Warby Parker thus partners with non-profits, like VisionSpring, to ensure that for each pair of glasses sold, another pair is distributed to someone in need, Verité, to ensure fair working conditions at its production facility. Its slogan 'everyone's right to see' fights for a pivotal social cause, helping the remaining 15% of the world's population to learn and work more effectively.

NAK (No Animal Killed)

NAK, standing for 'No Animal Killed', goes by the statement, 'We do not believe in killing animals to satisfy our desires to appear beautiful'. NAK believes that the artisanal know-how of shoe making is as crucial as preserving footwear's timeless aesthetic appeal. NAK brings the art of Italian shoe making all cruelty-free back with a vengeance: the label has partnered with the best young artisans in Italy to master its take on crafting stunningly greened-up shoe lines according to the highest, world-famous standard, while sharing NAK's revolutionary altruistic ethos to democratise sustainable shoe luxury.

As well as supporting British style and Italian heritage, NAK advocates the exclusion of traditional leather and minimising the overall impact of production on the environment. The conscious shoe label therefore ensures all materials are resourced close to their workshop in Northern Italy, making sure its designs are nothing but quality-controlled and enduring. Unlike many eco-conscious footwear labels, NAK exclusively caters for the wearer's hunger for subtle luxury and flamboyant, cutting-edge design: offering unique elegant styles for every taste, from classic sky-high office stilettos to more risqué electric blue suede sneakers. These shoes surely fail to leave you indifferent, so make your seasonal pick.


von Holzhausen

Launched in 2015, von Holzhausen is a Malibu-based collection of accessories with a focus on superior design, sustainability and quality of life. Supporting local production with all its accessories made in USA, von Holzhausen keeps up with a minimal ecological footprint and ensures the fair treatment of its dedicated artisans, including fair wages. Future-forward von Holzhausen's products are uniquely made out of a 100% animal free premium material called Technik-leather.

It is meticulously designed to have the supple hand of traditional leather combined with the durability of an engineered performance fabric, whereas 99% of the solvents used to process the intelligent, toxins-free material are recaptured and recycled. Yet von Holzhausen's mission goes beyond crafting lasting artisanal bags and accessories: it has aligned its spectrum of feminine products with giving back to women. The label is currently partnering with Hope Gardens, a LA-based charity partner helping women regain independence through long-term rehabilitation programs and support services, catering for the most urgent necessities of the women in need. 



+ Words: Hanna-Amanda

Hanna-Amanda is a London and Paris based Lifestyle Journalist and Copywriter avidly boycotting fast fashion and proactively keeping herself on the radar of new sustainability trends. Eventually, she sets Savant Magazine, a platform dedicated to a carefully curated visual assemblage of all things ethical and sustainable. She is our regular contributor on Ethical Fashion Trends. 

Platform: Savant Magazine