Entering its third year in the eco-fashion world with a new line debuting March 25, H&M has tapped actress/singer Vanessa Paradis as the face of its latest Conscious Collection.
The company has been making a solid effort to lessen its environmental impact and better business practices, joining the Fair Wage Network and increasing its organic cotton usage by 20 percent (making H&M the number one user of organic cotton worldwide). The retailer has also reduced its water use by 300 million liters with new production methods, and has previously included hemp in part of the Exclusive Conscious Collection dresses. Hemp requires less water and does not use pesticides and fertilizer. The full 2013 line, shoes included, is made from organic cotton, recycled polyester, and regenerated cellulose fiber known as Tencel. Highlights from the collection can be seen at the bottom of the page.
“We want our customers to feel confident that everything they buy from H&M is designed, manufactured, and handled with consideration for people and environment,” H&M CEO Karl-Johan Persson said in a statement when the second collection was released. The brand’s website states that its “vision is that all business operations shall be run in a way that is economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable.”
As for the collection itself, the 2013 range is sticking to its natural roots with jungle-inspired prints and a color palette that revolves around pretty greens, yellows, and white. This year’s line will be available at 100 stores around the world, and if available in your country, online – sorry USA.
“I like being part of something like the Conscious collection at H&M. I try my best to shop consciously, and vintage is very much part of my wardrobe. I love the style and it works in an eco-friendly way because I like to use and reuse old clothes,” Paradis said.
H&M claims that by 2020, 100 percent of its cotton will be from sustainable sources. In the last year, it has spent more than 3,600 hours training buyers and designers on sustainable practices and has also trained nearly 440,000 workers at its factories in Bangladesh on sustainability and workers’ rights. For a company located in four continents and 43 countries, implementing these practices makes a real impact and I applaud the company for realizing they can and will strive to do better.
The retailer also began a pilot program for recycling garments last year – customers can bring in worn clothes from any brand for H&M to recycle in exchange for a store voucher. This will supposedly be expanding to more stores, but I haven’t seen this at any of the three near me, have you?
Check out the informative H&M Sustainability page for more on the company’s efforts.
Visit Vogue UK gallery for more photos of the 2013 H&M Conscious Collection.