What's a B-Corporation? What Does It Have To Do With Your Clothes?

We know you've heard the saying "There's No Planet B." Of course, you know this means that in matters of the environment, there is no Plan (or Planet) B to fall back on. Plan A, our only plan, needs to be to shift the way we do life and business here on Planet Earth to a much more sustainable model.

And what does that mean, exactly? Well, in simple terms, the word "sustainable" means having the energy and resources we need to keep something going. Like when you run a race, you need to have the right shoes and hydration and a protein bar. Without the right resources, you won't make it to the finish line. The same is true for life on Planet Earth. We need to sustain the planet so that the planet can sustain us with clean air, water and soil. Every aspect of life depends on our ability to sustain natural resources and a balanced ecosystem. 

So how do we make this shift? Enter B Lab - a nonprofit org that is leading a global movement that is positively shifting the behavior and culture of businesses (large and small alike), as well as the structural underpinnings of capitalism that promote exploitation of humans and natural resources.

How Does B Lab Bring About Change?

B Lab has a five-point strategy to drive change resulting in a global economy that values and respects all stakeholders and not just shareholders.

1. Develop business standards that promote positive social and environmental impact; create tools that evaluate and measure these standards; and drive the adoption of these standards and tools in the greater economic ecosystem.

2. Certify businesses that meet these high global standards.

3. Tell the stories of B Corp Certified businesses and show the world how business can be an equitable force for good.

4. Develop, engage and mobilize local, regional and global networks. 

5. Use this network to drive policy change and engage in collective action to address society’s most critical challenges, i.e. extreme poverty, economic inequality, climate change, etc.

What is B Corp Certification?

B Corp Certification is a big deal! When you see the logo (above), you know that a business has gone through a rigorous assessment of its social (people) and environmental (planet) impact. More specifically, B Corp Certified companies must:

  • Demonstrate high social and environmental performance by achieving a B Impact Assessment score of 80 or above and passing our risk review. Multinational corporations must also meet baseline requirement standards.
  • Make a legal commitment by changing their corporate governance structure to be accountable to all stakeholders, not just shareholders, and achieve benefit corporation status if available in their jurisdiction. 
  • Exhibit transparency by allowing information about their performance measured against B Lab’s standards to be publicly available on their B Corp profile on B Lab’s website.  

(This information is taken directly from https://www.bcorporation.net/en-us/certification.)

Shop B Corp Certified Brands on People Heart Planet

So now that you're excited about the B Corp movement, you're probably still wondering what this has to do with what you wear?

Well, we've got some amazing news for you. (Drum roll, please.) You can shop B Corp Certified clothing brands on People Heart Planet! This means that you too can be a part making the world more equitable, just and sustainable by changing the way you consume!

On People Heart Planet, you can shop for clothes, shoes, accessories, bags, and home goods made ethically by Certified B Corporations, as well as other businesses that are verified to be fair trade and sustainable

Which brands are B Corp Certified? We're so glad you asked! Take a look at the list below, or browse our Brands Directory to discover nearly 200 ethical brands.

4Ocean

4ocean is a clothing and accessories brand that believes that the actions of individuals can collectively lead to change. They are on a mission to end the ocean plastic crisis by not only removing the plastic waste from the ocean, but also educating people about plastic pollution by empowering them to end their dependence of single-use plastic. Every product purchased comes with a One Pound Promise to pull one pound of plastic trash out of waterways, rivers and coastlines and fund their effort to end the ocean plastic crisis. 4ocean is a B-corporation certified company and is committed to donating 1% of its gross sales to environmental non-profits through their membership with 1% for the Planet.

Accompany

Accompany is a New-York based platform that offers a curated marketplace of artist-made products from all around the world. Their team is made up of business and creative specialists from across the luxury fashion industry. Accompany's mission is to change lives for the better by providing opportunities to connect artists and makers with a global market, thus building the economies of families and communities. Accompany is a Certified B Corporation.

Alchemy Goods

Alchemy Goods is a company with headquarters in Boulder, CO and manufacturing in Seattle, WA. Alchemy Goods creates bags and accessories from recycled materials like salvaged bicycle inner tubes, upcycled denim, and repurposed Advertising Banners. It all started when the founder had his messenger bag stolen. He made a new bag out of upcycled materials which was a huge hit with local bike shops. The numbers stitched into the logo on the bags indicates the percentage of recycled materials used in each piece. Alchemy Goods is a certifed B Corporation.

Baabuk

Baabuk is a Swiss-based, family-run business that specializes in sustainable wool shoes. All of their wool comes from Portugal, from mulesing-free sheep that spend their days roaming around the Serra de Estela Natural Park, or from sustainable farmers in New Zealand. Their fair trade factory is in Nepal where they strive to have a positive socio-economic impact.  Baabuk is a certified B Corporation. 

Day Owl

Day Owl is a Pittsburgh-based brand that turns waste into bags. It's that simple. The four pillars of their approach are: respect people, reduce waste, reuse objects and recycle material. They are a circular brand, using only recycled materials in their production and taking all of their bags back to redesign and repurpose every last one of them, lifelong repair and trade-ins. Day Owl creates dignified work opportunities for people in Pittsburgh, Haiti, Honduras, and Taiwan. They work alongside their sister organization FirstMile, a people-first supply chain committed to traceable sourcing and fair working conditions. FirstMile workers make a living collecting and recycling plastic bottles, which then get transformed into innovative fabrics. Day Owl is a certified B Corporation.

discovered.

discovered is a Netherlands-based online marketplace that connects artisan entrepreneurs in India, Kenya, Thailand, Indonesia, South America, Mexico, Malaysia and Israel to conscious consumers across the world. Their mission is to grow their online platform so that artisans can increase their earnings. When artists earn a profit, they ensure their families live with respect and dignity, and they keep traditional crafts alive. discovered is a certified members of The Artisan Alliance and a certified B Corporation.

Done Good

DoneGood is a Colorado-based online ethical marketplace for the consumer rebel! Founded by former Obama Administration employee Cullen Schwarz, Done Good is designed for consumers who wants to use their purchasing power for good. On Done Good, you will only find products that are made in a way that's good for people and the planet. They define “good for people” as brands that empower workers, pay fair wages, and are always free of trafficking, child labor and unsafe working conditions. They define “good for the planet” as brands that use eco-friendly production processes, non-toxic or organic or recycled/upcycled materials and are always taking other significant steps to protect our land, air and water. Done Good is a certified B Corporation.

Encircled

Encircled is a Canadian ethical fashion brand founded by Kirsti Soomer. Encircled is a fair fashion brand that does not compromise on its values and makes long lasting clothing that you can feel good about wearing. They make classic and versatile pieces of clothing that are loved and appreciated for years to come. Their design studio and their factories are located close to each other so the entire manufacturing process can be monitored and to the very last detail. Encircled uses sustainable fabrics like Tencel Lyocell, Modal, rayon from bamboo, organic cotton and linen. They also utilizes low-impact dyes that are planet and people positive. Encircled is a Certified B Corporation and OEKO-TEX(R) 100 certified.

Etiko

Etiko is an Australian-based, fair trade footwear, bag, accessories and apparel brand that was the first fashion brand in the southern hemisphere to be Fairtrade certified. At the core of their mission is to advance human rights. All of their materials and products are made and produced in India, Sri Lanka and Pakistan. Etiko traces their supply from cotton seed to store, and all of this information, including the name, address, and audit information of every one of their vendors, is available to you on their site. They only use organic cotton, vegan glues and natural rubber. In addition to being Fairtrade certified, Etiko is a certified B Corporation and a member of Social Traders.

Karen Kane

Karen Kane is an Los Angeles-based womens brand that is all about doing right by people and the planet. It was started by husband and wife team Karen and Lonnie out of their garage. They source from sustainable and ethical suppliers. They pay fair and living wages. And charitable giving is part of their core mission. Karen Kane is a certified B Corporation.

Kathmandu

Kathmandu is a New Zealand based apparel, travel and outdoor gear and adventure company. Kathmandu started because of a love for nature, and that love is built into everything they do. They are part of the Better Cotton Initiative. They also use recycled cotton and polyester and responsible down and wool. They will be carbon neutral by 2025 and have implemented a zero waste program throughout all of their facilities. Kathmandu is a certified B Corporation.

Known Supply

KNOWN SUPPLY is a social enterprise and lifestyle brand founded by Travis Hartanov and Kohl Crecelius. Its mission is to empower marginalized populations in impoverished communities around the world. The founders truly believe that jobs change lives. Workers are paid fair wages, which restores dignity for individuals and provides tangible pathways out of poverty, and every piece is hand signed by the person who made the item. They partner with Fair Trade Certified™ producers and have direct trade relationships to ensure the best, most ethical wears. GOTS Certified organic cotton is used for nearly everything they produce. KNOWN SUPPLY is a certified B Corporation.

Nisolo

Nisolo is a Nashville, Tennessee, based ethical shoeware brand. Their first mode of production is at the factory they own in Peru where the lowest wage paid is still a 3rd party verified living wage. 53% of their workers had never held a stable job with a consistent salary and benefits prior to working with Nisolo. Here they operate an in-house financial literacy training program for employees. They also work with another ethical factory in Leon, Mexico, as well as independent artisans in Kenya. Their commitment to sustainability includes: 95% of leather uppers originating from Leather Working Group Certified tanneries, which meet the highest standard of environmental responsibility; installing solar panels on the factory roof in Peru; and offering a Shoe Reclamation Program to incentivize customers to divert shoes from landfills at the end of their use in a manner that upcycles and recycles relevant components while enhancing employment in developing countries. Nisolo is also committed to maintaining 0% net carbon emissions through measuring, reducing and offsetting 100% of its carbon emissions from the start of our supply chain all the way to product shipment. Nisolo is a Certified B Corporation.

Pala Eyewear

Pala is a UK based eyewear brand that is both sustainable and mission-driven to give back to eyecare projects all across Africa. Their signature products are eco-friendly, vegan sunglasses handmade in Italy. As a brand with a goal of becoming the most sustainable eyewear company on the planet, Pala uses eco-friendly materials throughout its entire supply chain, including plant-based, biodegradable and recycled materials. All of these materials are outlined in detail on their About Us page. Pala’s founder John Pritchard was inspired by his travels in Africa to create a company that improves access to healthcare, specifically eye health, in the countries he visited. That’s why Pala works with Vision Aid Overseas across four countries – Zambia, Ghana, Sierra Leone and Ethiopia. For every pair of sunglasses sold, Pala provides grants directly to vision centres, dispensaries and screening and training programmes. To date more than 11,000 sight-impaired people have had their lives positively changed thanks to receiving a pair of prescription glasses or corrective surgery. Pala is a certified B Corporation.

SOKO

Soko is a San Francisco-based ethical jewelry and accessories brand that is led by women and puts people before profit. Soko's technology connects artisans in Kenya with you, the consumer. Soko is a certified B Corporation.

tentree

tentree is a Canadian apparel company whose motto is "Earth-First". This means they are fully committed to a business model and a world where the planet and its people come first, always. More than just planting trees (10 trees for every purchase, to be exact), tentree aims to have the smallest possible footprint and create more circular supply chains, from the materials used to the production processes they have in place. Not to mention their ethical labour rights, safe workplaces, and recognizing their social responsibility to keep their business practices as transparent as possible. tentree is a certified B Corporation and Climate Neutral Certified.

Terra Thread

Terra Thread is a California-based sustainable and fair trade bags and accessories brand founded by father-daughter duo Vik and Vizan Giri. Terra Thread has all of the certifications needed to back up their mission. Certified B Corporation. Carbon Neutral Certified. Fairtrade organic cotton. GOTS certified. Fair Trade certified factories. And to top it all off, proceeds from purchases are used to support Feeding America’s network of 200 food banks, 60,000 food pantries and meal programs that provide nutritious food to children, families, and seniors.

The Good Tee

The Good Tee was founded by Adila Cokar in 2020 after she came face-to-face with the reality of cotton farmer suicides in India, while on one of her sourcing trips around the country. She decided to do business differently after the realization that she had no idea who the farmer was. The lack of transparency and disconnect in the apparel industry propelled her to take action by building a brand that supports farmers and raises awareness about their plight. The company is actively involved in the entire production process and manages the full supply chain – from seed to shelf. They subscribe to the philosophy of slower production schedules, ethical working conditions, and fair deals for all. The Good Tee is B-Corp Certified, Fair Trade Certified and GOTS Certified.

WVN.

WVN. is a fair trade and sustainable women's fashion brand founded by eco-fashion advocate and pioneer Kate Fisher (who also founded Synergy Organic Clothing). WVN. works exclusively with fair trade factories and heritage artisans who use only earth-friendly production methods. They are a veteran Certified B Corporation, believing wholeheartedly that basic human rights like fair living wages, worker’s rights and good working conditions should be standard practice. They also only use GOTS certified materials, which guarantees that their raw materials meet the highest organic standards and that their factories only engage in environmentally and socially responsible manufacturing, respecting both employees and the earth. In fact, every single part of their production process is certified organic from the GOTS cotton to the non toxic dyes to the natural fabric treatments. To top it all off, WVN. believes in "looking good for a cause." As they say: "Girl power has been embedded in our mission from the beginning." They partner with the NGO She's the First, who in turn works with grassroots organizations that provide education and fight for gender equality for more than 138,000 girls across 26 countries every year.

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