Anyone else out there a ride-or-die Polo (the brand, not the sport) fan? I’ve been through a lot of fashion phases in my life, but those little ponies will forever have a place in my closet, and it’s pretty easy to see why. Take this Ralph Lauren boys denim button-down for instance. IMHO, classic, easy pieces like this will never go out of style because you can just throw them on and instantly look presentable.
Going back to what I said about fashion phases, I actually went through a very strict “only buy eco-friendly brands” period, and if anyone else is getting into that, more power to you. But I do think it’s important to point out that some labels that tout themselves as sustainable are made of green materials but unfortunately aren’t made to last. On the other hand, they might be very durable but downright ugly. Why shell out money for something that’s going to fall apart or that you’re ashamed to be seen in even if it is eco? Just because something is labeled “organic” or “recycled” may not mean it’s actually sustainable in the truest sense of the word.
- Denim button-down: Polo boys shirt purchased at Tanger Outlets when I was in college
- Navy corduroy bell bottoms: purchased secondhand on eBay
- Plaid purse: Rugby by Ralph Lauren
- Pink suede ribbon-tie sandals: by Nine West
That being said, I still don’t usually purchase new clothes because I’m a thrift shopping junkie, but I actually would make an exception to buy something timeless and quality like the Ralph Lauren clothes I’ve collected over the years. The plaid Rugby bag that I’m wearing in this outfit idea is probably the last thing I ever bought from a Ralph Lauren line because I just assumed that the company was too huge to truly care about ethical practices. But now I’m beginning to think that was a bit of a hasty decision. While the company only scores 39 out of a possible 100 on CSRHub (Nike scores 59), they are active when it comes to corporate social responsibility with initiatives like the the Pink Pony Campaign, the Ralph Lauren Center for Cancer Care and Prevention, the Polo Fashion School, and partnerships with the American Heroes Fund, Habitat for Humanity, and Hope Help & Relief Haiti. They also take steps to eradicate slavery and human trafficking from their supply chain as outlined on their website here. I would need to research more to see how many of their causes are greenwashing and how much they really adhere to their ethical practices policies, but it does seem like they are trying. On the other hand, the fact that they haven’t jumped on the eco-bandwagon by launching tons of organic and recycled products to fanfare makes me admire them all the more.
Does anyone have any more information on other sustainability initiatives at Ralph Lauren? If so, please share in the comments below.