If you’re a fan of the minimalist aesthetic, then chances are you’ve had your eye on COS – but if you’re holding back on making a purchase until you know whether the brand is ethical and sustainable, we’re here to give you the low down.
The Swedish brand launched in 2007. It offers ‘reinvented classics and wardrobe essentials for women, men, and children.’
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One look at the brand’s Instagram account will give you the idea that it positions itself as premium as far as the high street goes – but does its ethics match its aesthetics?
Is COS sustainable?
If we were to base it on just the fact that it’s part of the H&M Group, we can assume that COS is, at best, doing just okay in terms of sustainability.
COS itself is proud to share that it’s achieved 86% of its goal to use only sustainably sourced or recycled materials by 2021. It uses some eco-friendly fabrics like organic cotton, recycled wool, and more. So far it has launched programs to source better cashmere through partnering with the Good Cashmere Standard, and better down for its recycled outerwear range.
The brand also redesigned its packaging to incorporate more sustainable and recyclable materials. It also shared that it aims to make its packaging 100% recycled, reusable or compostable by 2025.
In July 2021, the brand launched its spring-summer collection that mixed comfort with sustainability. The products were made from eco-friendly fabrics such as hemp and linen.
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Is COS ethical?
COS scored 71-80% in the Fashion Transparency Index, along with other members of the H&M Group. This means it discloses information about its products’ sources as well as its list of manufacturers and processing facilities.
However, COS doesn’t have an easily accessible copy of its policies concerning workers. We’d just have to assume that whatever is implemented by its parent company is what they follow.
COS’ Animal Welfare Policy
According to H&M Group’s Animal Welfare Policy, its brands ensure that all the animal-derived materials they use in their products are gathered with the use of the Five Freedoms recommended by the World Organisation by Animal Health.
It still uses leather and silk, but it doesn’t use exotic animal skin, fur or angora.
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Wear Next Opinion
Wear Next believes it’s important to highlight the negative and unjust practises taking place in the fashion industry. We believe ethics and sustainability are an important talking point to bring about change and we encourage you to contact fashion brands to demand this.
However we understand that sustainable fashion isn’t accessible for every body due to various factors, such as budget and the ability to find confidence-boosting clothes that fit. We will continue to offer you fashion inspiration and guidance to suit every body and budget, while also highlighting the unjust systems at play in the fashion industry.