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Good on You: A Guide to Dressing for Environmental Success

If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably also spent the last year going crazy in an effort to make your wardrobe more environmentally friendly. Whether it’s thrifting, reworking old clothes, or upcycling outdated items -- you name it, I’ve probably tried it. This is where Good on You comes in. Developed in Australia in 2015, Good on You’s mission statement is to align with UN Sustainable Development Goal 12: ensuring sustainable production and consumption patterns. They fulfill this by researching and rating brands based on sustainability, ethicality, and affordability. They ask the community to “wear the change you want to see”.

 

How does it work?

Upon opening the app, you can choose to browse brands based on category, price, and sustainability rating. The rating ranges from “We Avoid” to “Great”. Almost every clothing brand is rated in the app, including Brandy Melville (classified under “We Avoid”). They have everything from purses and shoes to children’s wear, as well as partnering with certain brands to offer discounts for using the app. As well as offering shopping advice, Good on You collaborators also write weekly articles on ways to be more conscious about your carbon footprint. 

 

What brands are the best -- and the worst? 

I chose to set the price range to the cheapest options (college student, the reasoning is self-explanatory). A great deal of the positive ratings was awarded to lesser-known international companies. Britain’s Yes Friends specifically stood out as I did my research -- they are both greenhouse gas and slavery-free, with prices as low as $11 USD. Some of the worst brands are household names; Urban Outfitters, Forever 21, Aeropostale, and Pacsun all receive low marks for their large environmental impacts. Pursuing “trendy” fashion brands isn’t worth financing companies that aren’t actively working to reduce climate change. 

 

Is Good on You worth it?

My answer would be yes: the app is free and does the research for you on what’s sustainable and what isn’t. However, making closet swaps is only one step toward reducing our individual effect on the environment. Good on You is a great place to start, but it’s important to personally learn what we can change in our everyday lives to help save the planet.  

Maggie Carlson

Northwestern '24

Maggie is a freshman at Northwestern University studying Philosophy and Sociology, with a concentration in Sociology of Law. She enjoys playing piano, traveling, reading new books, and spending time with friends. When she's not studying or writing for Her Campus, you can find her working at Koi Evanston, hammocking on the lakefill, or weightlifting at SPAC.
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