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Is Urban Outfitters ethical?
While Urban Outfitters has a vintage and secondhand feel, a majority of their in-house brands were produced in unregulated factories, with sweatshop violations even within the US. They’ve also been accused of copying the designs of independent artists (there are so many articles relevant to this problem that I’d suggest a google search).
But one advantage of Urban Outfitters is that they have an in-house, upcycled brand which makes use of deadstock and secondhand clothing for new designs.
The Urban Renewal Collection is comprised of original vintage, upcycled and reworked vintage, and domestically produced items made with deadstock fabrics. As some of you know, I am a huge proponent of incorporating vintage and upcycled garments into one’s wardrobe.
The prints of the 60s and 70s, the silhouettes of the 80s, the grunge of the 90s. No matter which direction you go, when combined with contemporary favorites, you end up with a style that is all your own.
Of course, Urban Outfitters sells thousands of products that encompass many styles – not just vintage – including streetwear, lounge, cottagecore, and more.
If the Urban Renewal collection isn’t your thing, you can shop sustainable and ethical brands with a variety of aesthetics. The brands I share below are forward-thinking upcycled brands, sustainable boutiques, and companies that focus on independent designers.
8 Ethical Alternatives to Urban Outfitters
Let me know if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions for other conventional brands to cover!