Finding quality clothing that's ethically, and sustainably made is no easy feat. What's great, is there are more and more brands coming to fruition – or changing their business models – to take a stance in transparent and sustainable manufacturing. One of the O.G.s to the game is Everlane. Now, before I dive into who and what Everlane is, I am fully aware there is a lot of controversy that exists around the brand in terms of its true commitment to responsible manufacturing and ethics. And right before I was ready to hit "post" on this article, ops, a mistake was made again.
Because Everlane stands on a pedestal of "radical transparency" they are under a microscope. The week North America really went into lockdown due to COVID-19, they were accused of using the global health crisis as a way to union bust. You can read about it here.
Founder, Micheal Preysmen, did end up releasing a statement on their Instagram about it.
Because I take such a strong stance in companies being ethical and transparent, I was following the unfolding of this PR crisis closely. Even Bernie Sanders had something to tweet about it.
I must admit, the waters are still murky, but I've chosen to give Everlane the benefit of the doubt at this time. I have done my research and have gone over their Glassdoor reviews, as well as the Everlane Union Twitter account.
Nevertheless, there are two sides to every story. I'll still be following and watching the brand closely. I think Everlane's commitment towards transparency is noteworthy, and something to be celebrated as the continual effort is there.
Further, when it comes to sustainable fashion, I like to preach progress over perfection. Brands that take this stance encourage other brands to follow suit, and at the end of the day, this is a step in the right direction.
After owning a number of Everlane's items for almost two years now, I'm quite impressed with the quality and I've had a number of friends reach out to me and ask about my experience with their products, so low and behold, here is my review!
They've also been announcing a lot of sales lately – definitely check out their Choose What You Pay Options if you're in a position to shop right now.
I myself, am still researching and following this employee rights' story, and have never really been one to shop because of a sale. I shop when I need something, and I think I have a pretty good inventory of Everlane ware at this point. If you don't, and have been curious to give them a go, I hope this helps you out a little.
But first – what the heck is an Everlane?
Everlane is an apparel company that originated out of San Francisco and was founded in 2010 by Michael Preysmen. The company's vision is stated as "reinventing retail and eCommerce". Everlane is committed to what they dub, "radical transparency"and focus on high-quality, honestly priced basics. Their mission revolves around ethics and transparency and is summarized on their website as follows:
At Everlane, we want the right choice to be as easy as putting on a great T-shirt. That’s why we partner with the best, ethical factories around the world. Source only the finest materials. And share those stories with you—down to the true cost of every product we make. It’s a new way of doing things. We call it Radical Transparency.
Sounds pretty good, right? Honestly, simply from a branding and marketing perspective, it's beautiful, and I have a post coming soon that dissects the brilliance in one of their recent digital campaigns, so look out for that!
But now, enough about the who and more about the what. For those of you who've had your eyes on the noble brand for a while but haven't pulled the trigger yet, here are my top 5 product recommendations!
Here's my Haul!
I remember the first time I saw someone rocking the Day Heel at one of my cousin's weddings. I had been eyeing it online for a while, but after seeing it in it's flesh and how damn smart it looked, I had to pursue it.
Price: $164 CAD
Fit: Everything from my haul was luckily purchased in store. My friend and I did a trip to SF two summers back, I think we went to the Everlane store all of 4 times we were there. We had to take advantage of the no shipping and duty fees! This being said, I was able to try the shoes on in store!
Shoes are always so hit or miss when it comes to fit.
These guys fit true to size (TTS). I made the mistake of sizing half a size down because I have a slightly narrow foot. The shoes are made out of real leather, which usually stretches. These did not stretch so much though, so take your true size.
If you have a wide foot, I would size up half a size! But only if it's really wide. Because these heels have a more rounded toe, you should be okay in your TTS fit.
Although these shoes didn't stretch out as much as I wanted, they are AMAZING! I love that I can wear them with a pair of jeans or a dress and they still look great! The elastic at the back is also super smart, I love the utilitarian look of it. My foot has never slipped in these bad boy or fallen victim to a single blister!
What I wish I knew (WIWIK): The suede is not the best, and gets dirty quite easily. I picked these up in pink and the vibrancy faded quite a bit after I used some leather cleaner to spot clean them. I'd recommend stirring clear of this style in suede and opt for the full leather.
Overall Score: 8/10
Price: $91 CAD
Fit: True to size (they do bag out a bit after a couple wears, if you want them super fitted, size down, I like them a little more relaxed though so I stayed TTS).
The rise is perfect! (I have a longer torso, so for me, they hit just below the belly button. They hug in all of the right places though and are looser in areas where you need them to be like the knee. I have the ankle cut ones and they hit me perfectly right above the ankle bone (I'm 5"7 for reference)
Review: I LOVE THIS JEAN SO MUCH!
I'd been searching for a timeless, easy-to-wear jean like this for ages! When Everlane announced their Damn Good Denim drop, my excitement was unmeasurable.
Not only do these jeans ROCK! (I recommend them to any friend who's on the hunt for sustainable denim that won't break the bank) BUT the innovation behind them is incredible!
Why these are the very best jeans in the world:
What really sold me on these jeans is how they're made! Get this – the jeans are made in a factory in Vietnam called Saitex—dubbed "the world's cleanest denim factory". Standard denim factories waste thousands of gallons of water in the washing process (1500 litters to be exact). But at Saitex, 98% of the water is recycled to a state where it's so clean that you can drink it! 🤯
Not ONLY that but, all denim creates a toxic byproduct called sludge, but at Saitex, the sludge is extracted and shipped to a nearby brick factory. Once sludge is mixed with concrete, the toxic material can no longer leech into the environment. The resulting bricks are used to build affordable homes!! And so far, the factory has built ten!
If this isn't closed loop manufacturing, I don't know what is. This was the golden nugget that truly sold me on purchasing these jeans!
WIWIK: Like I said, these jeans do bag out quite a bit after one or two wears, if I knew that, I might have sized down, but I've grown to love the way they fit more relaxed. If I do need them to look more fitted based on what I'm wearing, I'll just throw them in the dryer for a couple minutes, and that does the trick!
Overall Score: 9/10
Price: $35 CAD
Fit: Perfect!! This is everything anyone could possibly want from a T-shirt dress. The length isn't too short, It comes about 4-5 inches above the knee. In tops, I usually teeter between a small and medium, I got a medium in this one though and it fits perfect. So if you're between sizes, I recommend taking your larger size for this one so you can get that nice relaxed, oversized dress tee look.
WIWIK: Honestly, nothing. I've taken this dress on all my vacations and it's perfect! You can also easily wear it as a t-shirt and style it a million and one different ways. I also wear it in the winter with tights, boots and a chambray or cardigan overtop. Absolutely no regrets on this one.
Overall Score: 10/10
Price: $56 CAD
Fit: Amazing!! These guys fit TTS too! I sized the same in these as I did in the Cheeky High Rise Jeans (size 6), and I haven't looked back. Theses shorts make a great travel campanion too! The fabric of these are phenomenal! The denim has a soft finish to it and a good amount of stretch. The rise is perfect, and the length is a dream. Wear these to a family bbq or the beach. They're also super comfortable to bike in!
WIWIK: That they fit and felt so great. If I knew this, I would have purchased them in more colours. I'll likely treat myself to another staple colour this summer.
Overall Score: 10/10
Price: $68 CAD
Fit: Again. true to size! I got this one in a 4 because size 6s were sold out. Because of the oversize fit, the 4 looks and feels fine, but if I had the choice, I would have purchased it in the 6. The linen on this is super light-weight and comfortable and I absolutely love the cut of it.
WIWIK: As everyone knows, linen is always a gamble, and this shirt is no exception to that notion. It definitely gets wrinkly after a wash. It's nothing a steamer can't fix but if you're someone who doesn't like to fuss much with fabrics, this might not be the shirt for you. I love linen for it's cool and lightweight touch and it always has a beautiful drape. A little wrinkle's never bothered me much anyhow.
Overall Score: 7/10
Price: $136 CAD
Fit: These pants are a DREAM. I love them so very much and they also fit right into @NoelleandFox's pant army (so that makes me feel extra cool). The flair is obviously super wide but they look fantastic with just about any shoe – I love to wear mine with a boot with a heel, rounded toe flats, or sneakers!
WWIK: Honestly, these pants are a dream, they exceeded my expectations! I wish I knew how comfortable and flattering they truly were so I could have grabbed another colour! These are made from the same cut and fabric as the twill short above, I seriously can't get over how comfy this fabric is! Overall Score: 10/10 Well, this concludes my haul! I hope this helps! Feel free to send me a message if you have any other questions about the pieces listed above.
Happy ethical shopping :)