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Aug 21 2015
by Shelby Reilly

Where Does Your Clothing REALLY Come From?

By Shelby Reilly - Aug 21 2015

If you go into your closet and look at the tag on a shirt, you'll probably read something along the lines of "Made in Taiwan," "Made in Indonesia," or more famously "Made in China." We're all pretty aware that most (or realistically all) of our clothing comes from third world countries, but what we're not all aware of is the sweatshop epidemic. Sweatshops are factories that pay low, virtually unlivable wages and they have a long history of collapsing and killing workers. As consumers there are so many things we can do about this, although I understand the appeal of a cute, cheap buy, it's our responsibility to spend our money supporting companies that treat workers fairly. Here's some alternatives to those big name brands: 

Good and Fair Clothing 

Photo Credit to Good & Fair Clothing 

This companies name speaks for itself. They use fair-trade certified factories and organic cotton in all of their clothes and the clothes are really fashionable. 


Photo Credit to Mayamiko 

Want clothing that's incredibly soft and super trendy? Mayamiko uses a type of African cotton called chitenje and makes their clothing in Malawi. 

Thread Harvest 

Photo Credit to Thread Harvest 

This company has items similar to what you would find in Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie and Forever 21. They're all about sustainability and making social impact. 


Photo Credit to Everlane 

This company has an option to look into their factories. They have a map and you can see where everything is made! It's super refreshing to see such a stylish company be so open about where they create their clothing! 

Thrift Shops 

Photo Credit to CitySquare 

I cannot stress enough how important thrift shops are. You're reusing a product as well as putting money into your community. Many thrift shops also take part in local charity work and you can find super unique things in thrift shops! 

Always keep in mind where your money is going. Your activity as a consumer lets things like sweatshops happen. Is someones life really worth clothing that's cheap and not the best quality?

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Shelby Reilly - Marymount Manhattan College

Shelby Reilly is majoring in Theatre Performance and Digital Media. Shelby was an officer for the International Thespian Society while in high school and is currently developing her own nonprofit organization! When she's not obsessing over musicals, Shelby enjoys watching classic movies, getting lost and searching for the perfect vanilla latte. You can follow her on Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat @shelbyreilly711!

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