Ecothes helps ethical and environmentally conscious shoppers make better decisions about which brands to support. In today's interview we will meet Bethany, founder of Ecothes.
What was it that prompted you to create Ecothes?
I’ve always been passionate about the environment and love fashion. But, one day, when I cleared my closet, I realized that I had a shocking amount of clothes I didn’t wear, and most of the clothing was from fast fashion brands - that’s when I thought something needed to change.
I started educating myself about the damaging effects of the fashion industry on the environment and people in the fast fashion supply chains. Around that time, I couldn’t find many resources available that felt accessible to someone wanting to start their sustainability journey - that’s where the idea for Ecothes started.
Ecothes is a platform where we can drive the conversation around sustainability forwards, and help people learn about sustainable fashion, as well as support and showcase some amazing sustainable brands.
You think that sustainable habits are a passing fad. Or do you think they will be part of all tomorrow’s decisions?
Sustainable habits can’t be a passing fad because we’re running out of time to make a difference to the planet. Instead, we must all be aware of our actions’ impacts on people, animals, and the earth and make positive changes.
What helps you to keep going and doing what you do?
When I hear positive feedback from our readers about an article or brand we’ve shared on Ecothes or when a brand reaches out to thank us for featuring them, it makes me feel so happy that we’re contributing to making a difference.
What is your opinion on the fashion industry today?
The fashion industry as a whole is extremely damaging to the environment and is notorious for exploiting workers around the world. The fashion industry produces more emissions than international plane travel and shipping combined.
There is already positive change happening in the fashion industry because of the demand from consumers who want their clothes to be made ethically, with respect for people and the planet.
This demand has meant that we’ve seen a rise in the number of genuinely sustainable brands but has also meant that many large fashion brands are trying to appear ‘greener’ or ‘eco-friendly.’
While it’s great to see brands making positive changes, many large fashion brands are greenwashing their customers by tricking people into perceiving that they’re committed to helping the environment while still using exploitative and damaging processes.
It's therefore crucial as consumers that we educate ourselves to ensure we aren’t greenwashed. A good place to start is to look for whether a brand is transparent about its materials and its supply chains.
What advice would you give to a person who wants to start having a more sustainable lifestyle?
I’d say to start slowly with small changes you can implement into your day-to-day life, like reducing your meat consumption, buying less, supporting sustainable and ethical brands, and walking or cycling instead of driving where you can.
One thing I found empowering when I first started my sustainability journey was to educate myself on why I was changing my habits. This helps my new sustainable habits stick long term.
We know you offer a very useful free newsletter. Could you tell our readers what’s behind it?
Of course, we offer a bi-monthly newsletter called the Ecothes Edit, where we share a combination of what’s new at Ecothes, interesting articles we’ve read on other websites, interviews with sustainable brand founders, and amazing sustainable products we’ve discovered. It’s completely free to sign up, and we love to hear feedback from our community on what articles they’d like us to research next!
The Ecothes Edit is completely free and you can sign up to the newsletter here.