10 Affordable Ethical Clothing Brands For Every Budget
One of the most common questions I get asked when it comes to shopping sustainable fashion is where to find ethical clothing brands that are affordable for a smaller budget. Honestly, it's a valid question and one that can sometimes be difficult to address. Everyone has a different idea of what affordable means for them, but when it comes to our societies general idea of affordable fashion we have become accustomed to believing that clothes should be dirt cheap and capable of being disposed of without much thought.
Today it is estimated that the average American will discard roughly 81 pounds of clothing every year, which results in 3.8 billion pounds of post-consumer textile waste landing in landfills. In the simplest financial sense this is money poorly spent and ultimately wasted. Ethically and environmentally speaking there is an even greater cost to the way view our clothes and support fast fashion.
For this reason and many others, choosing to adopt a more sustainable wardrobe makes sense both financially and ethically. If we choose to purchase our clothing with thought and intention, we ultimately will spend less, and save more by producing less waste. The transition I wouldn't say is easy, and it definitely doesn't happen overnight, but it is possible on any budget.
But before we get into some of my favorite more affordable ethical clothing brands I do want to say that if none of these brands still seem to be within your budget I would highly recommend seeking out second hand retailers like consignment shops, and online companies like ThredUp and Poshmark, both of which I still use myself today.
10 Affordable Ethical Clothing Brands For Every Budget, Body, and Every Wardrobe
threads 4 thought
Threads 4 Thought is an ethical clothing brand that uses eco-friendly materials, and socially responsible manufacturing procedures.
Personally I love Threads 4 Thought for their timeless and comfort driven style. They offer well designed basics from t-shirts to dresses and activewear that are perfect for the conscious consumer.
Threads 4 Thought carries both men's and women's clothing, and offers sales on their products throughout the year.
Many of their items are under $50 with sale items priced even lower.
People Tree is recognized as a pioneer in the ethical clothing industry. For over 25 years they have partnered with Fair Trade producers to make ethical clothing more available to the general public.
Their garments are made using organic cotton and eco-friendly materials, while supporting ethical, fair-trade practices.
I love that people tree offers a wide variety of clothes from shoes, to dresses, to activewear and basics.
They offer some of the most affordable prices I have seen in the sustainable fashion industry, and have sale items for those on an even tighter budget.
Pact is my favorite company to go to for basics that are super comfortable. They offer a wide variety of garments for men, women, and children made using GOTS Certified Organic Cotton in fair-trade certified facilities.
The Pact moto is to "own your comfort" which is exactly what I think of when I think about Pact clothing.
The designs, styles, and colors are all pretty timeless and interchangeable making Pact a great brand to help build the foundation of a more sustainable wardrobe.
ten thousand villages
Ten Thousand Villages is a fair trade pioneer and non-profit social enterprise that partners with independent small-scale artisan groups, co-ops and workshops to bring their products to consumers.
I personally love the variety of accessories from bags to jewelry that Ten Thousand Villages offers, many of which are priced at less than $50 and tell an incredible story.
My favorite bag right now for summer is this Essential Companion Tote that I have been bringing with me to the beach and farmers market. The artisan quality is amazing, and it is absolutely beautiful.
know the origin
Know The Origin is all about full transparency from farm to clothing. Know The Origin uses organic & fairtrade cotton from two farmer-run cooperatives in India where 18% of our worlds cotton is grown.
Cotton is an incredible labor intensive and chemical laden crop. This results in a wide variety of global health, environmental health, and workers rights issues
Know The Origin is one of my favorite go-to brands for basic shirts and undergarments. They also make mens clothing and a variety of graphic t-shirts as well.
eco vibe apparel
The apparel industry has become the third most polluting industry on the planet, and EcoVibe is working to help offset some of that pollution by creating an ethical clothing and lifestyle brand that puts the environment first.
EcoVibe uses a wide variety of sustainable fabrics that have been ethically produced in the making of their clothing.
EcoVibe is my go-to affordable option for more bohemian style clothing and dresses.
If I could only shop one ethical clothing brand it would probably by Slum Love.
The Slum Love designs are that perfect mix of bohemian meets everyday basic comfort, and are made ethically in Kenya using eco-friendly materials with a portion of proceeds giving back to education for children in some of the world largest slums.
Slum Love offers both mens and women's apparel and the designs, quality, and budget friendly prices of these garments really just cant be beat.
Sancho's is a sustainable fashion and lifestyle brand that sources clothing that is certified fair trade and is constructed from sustainable natural materials.
Sancho's sells both men's and women's clothing and stocks a curated range of clothing, accessories and gifts from organic and fair trade producers.
What I love about Sancho's is the wide variety of clothing options, styles, and departments. You can find basics, undergarments, dresses, and accessories all in one shop.
They also offer incredible sales throughout the year with many items falling under $30-40.
Looking for bold prints and patterns? Mayamiko is your go-to sustainable fashion brand that brings an eclectic range of colors, patterns, and styles to its sustainably made garments.
Mayamiko is a sustainable women's wear and lifestyle brand made in Malawi and inspired by African artisanal traditions and prints.
The Mayamiko collections are designed for the global modern woman with incredibly high ethical standards and micro-finance programs in place to ensure that women are able to support themselves and create the life and opportunity of their dreams.
I personally love everything that wearing a Mayamiko article of clothing embodies and believe that they are one of the best sustainable fashion brands in the global fashion marketplace to support today.
Made from recycled water bottles and ethically produced in Vietnam, the girlfriend collective is one of my favorite ethical clothing brands for athletic wear.
The minimal designs, sustainable practices, and body inclusivity nature of the brand makes it one of my personal favorites for active/athlesiure wear.
Disclaimer: This post contains some affilaite links through which The Well Essentials receives a small commission, but the price is the same for you the consumer and all opinions are my own.