Brand Impact Ratings
Quickly identify the brands who are going above and beyond in the areas most important to you.
Shop Your Values with Confidence
Shopping your values is easy with our Brand Impact assessment and ratings powered by global advocacy champion Re/Make. Scores are given across multiple areas of social and environmental impact which are outlined below.
Are you an overachiever looking for the A+ brands?
Today, an A+ is not likely because our assessment aspires to true social and environmental sustainability. Due to technological and systemic limitations, a perfect score is not yet attainable. Our ratings are weighted to reflect current day possibilities and best-in-class practices, but they also leave space for brands to move towards true and full sustainability as newly designed processes and innovation allow. Keep in mind that by comparison to traditional fashion, even a C is an outstanding score!
Protecting the Planet
Responsible Textile Use & Growth Regulation
Use of raw materials that are more environmentally sustainable and a dedication to manage this impact. Operating with a responsible growth model, whilst actively working to reduce pre- and post-consumer waste from the production process.
Water Impact & Hazardous Chemical Management
Responsible water usage in manufacturing of products and contributing to the sustainability of water resources. Actively working to avoid the discharge of hazardous chemicals from manufacturing.
Awareness and contribution to circularity and creating products that last and are fit for purpose. Looking at the whole business model from a post-consumer lens and taking action to inspire longevity of products (rather than the fast fashion planned obsolescence model). Exploring non-traditional linear business models, recycling, repair, rental, and resale.
Climate Change & Energy Impact
A commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from production and dedication to assess and reduce environmental impact, especially in communities most adversely affected—both by its operations and the climate crisis more generally.
Care for People and Animals
Worker Rights, Wages, Health & Well-being
Protecting basic labor standards and going beyond them. Paying a fair wage and ensuring there are no harmful practices that may cause a negative impact on the safety of workers. Providing the right to report grievances and unionize. Supporting social initiatives that increase well being.
Business Practices & Policies
Business practices that impact all employees, including garment workers. This relates to buying practices, governance, responsible exits, and providing opportunities for voices to be heard at all levels.
Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion
Equal opportunities for all built into the business model and made accessible, ensuring a business model where hiring, retaining and investment/development opportunities exist for all.
Welfare is respected in use of animal-sourced materials, and the company shows a public commitment to this.
Supply Chain Traceability & Public Disclosure
Publicly sharing critical information about where products are made and the makers that make them. Ability to trace products and their components back through each step of the supply chain to the origin of raw materials. Brands and consumers knowing under what conditions our products are made is critical to a more ethical and sustainable future.
More questions about our Brand Impact Assessment or Ratings?
We chose to power our rating system with the Re/Make assessment because it is broad in addressing every corner of what makes the fashion industry so harmful today. We grouped the assessment questions into 3 Impact Areas and 9 Focus Areas, allowing shoppers to identify the brands that excel in the areas most important to them. Whether you care most about toxic chemical usage, climate impact, diversity, or worker conditions, you can identify the leading brands in each of these areas and others using our impact ratings.
The assessment is aspirational, meaning that a perfect score is unattainable due to current technological and systemic industry limitations. The assessment points obtained are converted to an 11pt rating scale (A+ to F). The ratings are weighted to reflect current day possibilities and best-in-class practices, but also leaves space for brands to move towards true and full sustainability as newly designed systems, processes, technology and innovation allow.
The scores are calculated using a normal distribution determined by the mean and standard deviation of the scores of over 60 “traditional” fashion brands (brands with missions that do not focus on addressing social and environmental harms of the industry). These are based on assessment scores determined by Re/Make. Further details of Sellery’s normal distribution calculations will be made public with our next phase of website development. If you’re interested in learning more, please reach out to [email protected].
The short answer is yes, and no. We chose to maintain the integrity of the assessment questions for large brands, as this assessment was designed with large brands in mind (brands with significant financial and people resources). However,
- We altered how the questions were grouped (Impact Areas/Focus Areas)
- We altered the points calculations, allowing some questions to be counted in both their respective “impact area” (such as Care for People and Animals), while also allowing additional points towards “Transparency.” We felt it was necessary to increase the weight of Transparency, as we believe this is the mechanism that will bring the industry greater accountability, and ultimately closer to true social and environmental sustainability
- We also adapted the assessment for small and micro brands. The possibility of obtaining many of the points, as originally designed, would be a significant burden for brands with limited resources. This would result in smaller brands receiving lower scores, even if they were achieving the same impact as a larger brand. You can see how questions and/or evidence was redesigned for these brands in the full assessment.
We define brand sizes as follows:
- Micro: < $1M USD annual revenue, < hours equivalent to 5 full-time employees (FTE) ( < /= 160hrs per wk, including contractors)
- Small: < $10M USD annual revenue, hours equiv. to 10-49 FTE
- A/O: >/= $10M USD annual revenue, >/= hours equiv. to 50 FTE
This assessment looks at issues across a broad spectrum of social and environmental injustices within the industry, rather than an isolated view of brand impact (i.e. water, emissions…) Brands who are focused on only one or two areas of impact will score low on the overall assessment, and these brands will not likely meet Sellery minimum standards.
Additionally, this evaluation is 100% transparent. You are able to research a brand down to the individual questions and points. This is in line with Sellery’s values and our goal for the future of fashion.
Any assessment has inherent human bias—however, we strive to remove bias, ambiguity, and subjectivity as much as possible with mechanisms such as ensuring diverse and expert input into its design, creating clear evidence guidelines and assigning 2nd reviewers to validate assessment evidence and scores.
Our assessment was originally designed by Re/Make with large, traditional brands in mind. This resulted in a heavy focus (and point value) on public commitments and publicly disclosed results, sometimes over actual evidence. Additionally, the assessment points lean more heavily into worker rights, wages, health and safety (44%) than the environment (29%). The animal welfare portion is the least represented area, at only 2% of the assessment points. Although, Sellery has strong minimum standards around animal welfare for all brand partners.
Sellery’s greatest weakness is our inability to conduct in-person audits as part of our evidence process. Currently, as a startup this is not yet within reach. Instead, we require our brand partners to provide documentation that evidences our minimum standards and earned assessment points to the best of their ability. Additionally, we require evidence of all active certifications. Certifications that include in-person auditing provide an added layer of accountability that Sellery relies on.
While our methods are not perfect, we work hard to build trusting relationships with our brand partners (especially micro and small brands) who cannot afford expensive certifications and third-party audits. Vetting brands for our minimum criteria is a collaborative process. A brand’s responses and actions during the process are part of what we rely upon to assess whether they are truly aligned with our vision and doing the hard work that we require of our partners.
Our future goals include continuous improvement of the assessment itself, including a more balanced point system, and a heavier focus on proof of action, as well as steps towards in-person auditing as evidence.
If you have questions or concerns about a particular brand or our assessment process in general, please let us know at [email protected].
Sellery has not evaluated any traditional brands, however, Re/Make has. The worst scoring brand on their list is Ross at 0. Yes, you read that right, ZERO. In fact, all of the following brands have a score of less than 10pts (less than 7% of the possible 150), based on their 2022 updates. We encourage you to check out their full list of assessments.