ASK THE EXPERTS: OUR SUSTAINABILITY PRO TACKLES YOUR ECO-RELATED QUESTIONS
Wanna know more about Madewell’s Do Well initiatives? We gathered your questions from Instagram and had our expert on all things eco-friendly, Gonzalo, answer them. See how we’re doing better by the planet and its people more and more every day.
Do you have plans to include organic cottons and other sustainably produced materials?
Yes! We use organic cotton in a selection of our jeans, and we partner with the Better Cotton Initiative to improve cotton farming globally. We also source other thoughtfully produced materials like recycled polyester and viscose fibers made of wood from responsibly managed forests (hint: check the Our Materials section on our Do Well page for more info on that).
Is there a plan for all of your jeans to eventually be made sustainably/fair trade?
We are continuing to increase our Fair Trade Certified™ options as we bring more of our partner factories on board with the initiative. By 2025, 90 percent of our denim will be certified!
Why does Madewell want to be sustainable? What drives these efforts?
Now more than ever, we feel the need to act with urgency to address the climate crisis and also contribute to fair, healthy and safe working conditions for the people in our supply chain.
What kind of repairs are available for my Madewell jeans?
We’re all about extending the lifespan of denim and we want you to hold onto your Madewell jeans for as long as possible! That’s why we offer hemming and repairs (patching, mending and other fixes) in all of our stores. Also, when you’re ready to move on from a pair, bring it back to us and we’ll recycle it into housing insulation for communities in need.
Do you have any circular economy initiatives?
Yes! A few examples are using recycled materials in our products, focusing on durability and repairs for a longer lifespan of our garments, giving pre-loved jeans a new life through our partnership with ThredUp, recycling denim into housing insulation as well as recycling fabric scraps through FabScrap.
Do you use ethical factories?
We do. All of our factories adhere to our Vendor Code of Conduct, which is based on the International Labor Organization conventions and other internationally recognized labor rights. We work very closely with them to ensure this code is implemented at every one of our factories.
How will you increase transparency of the clothes-making process?
By continuing to grow our partnership with Fair Trade USA and certifying more of our partner factories under the Fair Trade standards. We are working to improve workplace benefits, protect the environment, provide a voice for workers and funnel additional funds directly back to the men and women at the factories we source from.
Do you do anything extra re: water conservation in the process of making jeans?
Yes, we work with denim factories like Saitex, which recycles its water and uses 1.5 liters per jean versus the industry standard of 80 liters per jean. Stay tuned for more of our water conservation initiatives!
How can I get involved? 🌎👖
Look out for our Do Well labels (whenever you see one, it means that item was made with sustainable materials), wash less, wash cold and hang dry! 🙂
Thanks to you all for sending in your questions, and thanks to Gonzalo for those helpful answers (!). Need more eco info? Head to our Do Well Page.