Using Language to Promote Transparency and Sustainability

It’s been 10 years since the inception of the word “EcoDiva”, which opened up the silly, sassy, sexy side of sustainability (in food, film, and fashion). Since then, some environmentally conscious brands in Los Angeles have been thriving. This has caused many business owners, including Isaac Nichelson, the founder of Sustainable Source Studios, to shift direction to assist other fashion businesses in implementing better production practices.


Through EcoDivas and Beyond the Label, I’ve had the opportunity to go on fashion field trips to each of the following awesome businesses, and encourage others to do the same. Each company’s website speaks to its customer base in a relatable language. Sometimes when it comes to engaging a customer about transparency, a phrase is more relatable than a mission statement. However, the mission and vision needs to back up the phrase.


Groceries Apparel’s message is simple and clear: “Seed to Skin.” They share the ingredients, materials, and dyes they use in a language that fits their brand. Groceries Apparel wants their customer to feel confident that they have done the research for them.


Another progressive company is Reformation, whose catchphrase is, Being naked is the #1 most sustainable option. Reformation is #2.” First sass, then facts. They share specific statistics, research, and goals with their fanbase so that they can be a part of the journey from doing good to doing even better.


Outerknown, founded by pro-surfer Kelly Slater, started as a men’s surf and lifestyle brand and has recently added a women’s collection. Their design approach: “We’re surfers who grew up with surf brands, but we grew out of logos. And we want to wear clothing that’s made better and looks better.”


When it comes to brands that utilize their transparency to connect with customers, Industry of All Nations and Apolis create the most unique museum-like in-store shopping experiences.


As mentioned in the previous “Transparency Evolution” article, Industry of All Nations, shares science-based information in their store. On the homepage, they simply have the word “Why” on the left, which leads to, “We strive to represent the future of our planet as well as we can…

Apolis focuses on globally connecting shoppers with makers. “We believe you want long-lasting, everyday items which improve the lives of the people who make them — because your purchase is helping shape the kind of world we live in.” The store shares signage of exactly where, by whom, and by what processes each item is made. This personal connection helps Apolis retain customers who feel pride as they watch the brand thrive.

Written by Taryn Hipwell


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