One of the things that I am always on the lookout for is sustainable and ethical fashions and accessories for my travels. I often travel to resort destinations because I prefer beaches, turquoise water and warm weather. This means I need clothing that works in these locations both in style and comfort.
There has been a lot of movement towards sustainable, conscious and ethical fashion in the last few years. I’ve seen countless brands pop up, a few disappear and many existing companies incorporate more sustainable practices.
While Zara isn’t the most sustainable or ethical, I am starting with them for a couple of reasons. First, they are huge (they produce over 450 million items a year) and their model has always been the opposite of sustainable or mindful – they are known for how quickly they can bring fashions from idea to physical goods in stores. They are damn good at it. We studied Zara over and over again in business school for how innovative, fast, and quite simply how unbelievable their supply chain was. They can bring a style from concept to retail stores within two weeks. That speed was unheard of before they started.
A few years ago this retail giant launched their Join Life collection, in response to H&Ms conscious collection, and while it isn’t perfect, it is an excellent move for those of us looking for more conscious, stylish and affordable clothing. While I love small batch, unique style and truly sustainable fashions, for there to be real impact, we need the big companies to get on board as well.
If Zara jumped on the bandwagon of supporting textiles like organic cotton, there would be a heck of lot less pesticides leaching into groundwater, oceans and onto your skin. It also would aid in creating a non-toxic work environment for the farmers that grow cotton. While cotton isn’t a perfect solution, it is all about making strides in the right direction and I believe Zara is doing just that.
Since I live in Florida and it is always summer here, I was drawn to the hip graphic tees and crop tops in the collection, plus the linen shorts and beautiful hand-woven bags. The tee is an organic cotton and the shorts are made from a breezy linen. While organic, un-dyed linen is the best, linen overall is a decently sustainable choice because it is a national fiber made from a flax plant. Best of all it naturally requires very little pesticides and is completely biodegradable.
This look from Zara is perfect for your next conscious seaside getaway.