Sustainable Shopping Glossay

Find out more about what it means for a product to be made of recycled content or Fair Trade Certified. Check out our list of commonly used terms for sustainable shopping.


Relating to or derived from living matter using no genetically modified seeds, pesticides, or chemical yielding aids

  • Organic cotton – Cotton that is produced to ensure the health of ecosystem and soil without the use of GMOs or toxic chemicals. Learn more about Organic Cotton here.
  • Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) – Standard that ensures the organic status of textiles from the harvesting of materials to manufacturing to labeling through environmentally and socially responsible credible assurance to consumers. Requires that there is a minimum of 70% organic fiber. Learn more about GOTS here.
  • Regenerative Organic Certified™ (ROC™)Certification for food, textiles and personal care ingredients on the meeting the standards for animal welfare, farmworker fairness, and soil health. Learn more about Regenerative Organic Certified™ (ROC™)  here.
  • Organic Wool – Wool certified to the Global Organic Textile Exchange (GOTS) and the Organic Trade Association. Naturally grown wool, which is biodegradable, without the introduction of dyes and chlorine-based pre-treatments. Learn more about Organic Wool here.


Fibers that are made from post-industrial or post-consumer use which lowers water usage and the carbon footprint of the production fibers

  • Global Recycled Standard (GRS) – Standard that describes requirements recycled content claims. Products contain materials that conform with the Federal Trade commission’s Guides and the ISO declared definition of recycled. Learn more about the Global Recycled Standard (GRS) here.
  • Recycled Wool* – Wool that was previously used to make another product. Taken from either pre-consumer sources such as factory scraps or post-consumer sources. Learn more about Recycled Wool here.
  • Recycled Claim Standard (RCS) – Standard that sets requirements for certification of recycled input. Includes additional criteria for social and environmental requirements and chemical restrictions. Learn more about Recycled Claim Standard here.
  • Recycled cotton* – Cotton fabric that is converted into cotton fiber to be reused in textile products. Learn more about Recycled Cotton here.


Prioritizing environmental, animal welfare, and social concerns in the process of creating the product

  • Responsible Wool standard (RWS) – Textile fiber with a long lifespan obtained from animals that is biodegradable and recyclable. Learn more about the Responsible Wool Standard here.
  • Cotton Made in Africa (CMiA) – Internationally recognized standard committed to protecting the environment while improving living and working conditions of small farmers and ginnery workers. Learn more about Cotton Made in Africa (CMiA) here.
  • Reel Cotton – The Responsible Environment Enhanced Livelihoods Cotton defines cotton that is sourced to include environmental quality and traceability conditions in their supply chain factories and farms. Learn more about Reel Cotton here.
  • Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) – Standard for responsible forest management, by ensuring that products come from responsibly forest that provided economic, social, and environmental benefits. Learn more about FSC here.  
  • Responsible Down Standard (RDS) – Ensures that down and feathers come from animals that have not been subjected to any unnecessary harm. Learn more here.
  • *Global Traceable Down Standard (TDS) – Standard that ensures down used in products come from a source that respects animal welfare and can be fully transparently traced. Learn more about TDS (Advanced Traceable Down) here.
  • Cradle to cradle certified (material or product) – Certification that products that maintain a level of total recycling through the entire life cycle of the product. Learn more about Cradle to Cradle Certified here.
  • Made in Green by OEKO-TEX®The label certifies the product contains no textiles and leather items made from harmful substances. Learn more about Made in Green by OEKO-TEX® here.
  • Standard 100 by OEKO-TEX®If a product has been awarded the STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® label, all components of this article have been tested for harmful substances and that the article is therefore harmless to health. Learn more about Standard 100 by OEKO-TEX® here.
  • Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) – Standard that marks products that contain cotton grown with water usage, chemical fertilizers, and pesticides in mind. Learn more about the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) here.


Fair Trade USA® works closely on the ground with producers and verifies transactions between companies and their suppliers to ensure that the people making Fair Trade Certified goods work in safe conditions, protect the environment, build sustainable livelihoods, and earn additional money to empower and uplift their communities.


Read more about Fair Trade Certified™ Standards here.


bluesign® PRODUCT

These products are made of bluesign® APPROVED fabrics and accessories and are bluesign® certified products produced in a resource conserving way with a minimum impact on people and the environment.


Read more about bluesign® PRODUCT here.


Leather sourced from tanneries that ensure responsible chemical, water, and energy usage. Learn more here

(leather from a Bronze, Silver or Gold rated tannery ONLY)

*Note all recycled claims should be certified to either Recycled Content Standard (RCS) or the Global Recycled Standard (GRS))