Brands Manufacturing Ethically In China

Because China is typically known for its mass production, cheap wages, and unkempt working conditions, the ethical industry tends to steer clear of any labels that say, “Made in China.” As a community taking action for a more conscious world, we automatically associate those labels with unfair conditions, and low quality production.

However, some ethical brands have specifically chosen to manufacture in China, providing sustainable and ethical jobs for factory workers, and even seeking out uniquely skilled craftspeople to serve a more global market. By creating a more ethical economic climate, these brands are breaking the stigma commonly associated with “Made in China.”


1. Jewels & Aces

Jewels & Aces is pioneering a new model of ethically producing jewelry, while being conscious and on-trend to minimal style. Their beautiful pieces pair perfectly with any outfit, whether it’s an oversized, decorative sweater, or t-shirt and ripped jeans. Each piece is crafted with care, encouraging consumers to consider where their jewelry is made, while being mindful to the amount of uses they can get out of purchasing just one piece.

From the brand:

"Jewels & Aces’ artisan partners are women-owned small businesses, who are able to provide reasonably-priced jewelry due to investments in innovation and highly skilled employees, rather than low wages and poor working conditions."


2. Brass Clothing

Brass Clothing works with two expert factories in Hangzhou, China. One factory produces all of their cut-and-sew garments and the other factory produces their knit garments. They visit all of their factories multiple times a year and only work with facilities that they have personally vetted and inspected.

From the Co-Founder:

"My time spent in China working with my Chinese colleagues has been eye-opening...[Contrary to popular belief] the vast majority of factories are trying to do good work. Well-managed factories consistently strive to make quality product with healthy workers in a safe environment, all while trying to grow their businesses." Source: Medium


3. Everlane

Everlane partners with multiple factories throughout China, including Hangzhou, Donggaun, Jiangmen, Fujian, Suzhou, and Shenzhen. Each factory seems to have its’ own specialty, and has been vetted for fair working conditions, and wages. You can read about Everlane's Radical Transparency on their website and their cost breakdown is detailed on each product page, so you know exactly where your dollars are going.

From the brand:

"They are experts in their field, and the operation runs like a well-oiled machine. The premises are clean and organized, and the employees seem happy and relaxed as they work. [Shenzhen] has been recognized for its efforts towards minimizing its carbon footprint."


4. Ellie Kai

Much of the product at Ellie Kai is Made-for-You. From the perfect holiday dress, to a sophisticated office look, they introduce the silhouette, fits and the design details, and empower you to create the look that works best for you.

From the brand:

"When we say ‘made with love’ in China, we really mean it. Our direct manufacturing teams in China and Hong Kong are an extension of the Ellie Kai family. We started this business abroad with them by our side, and Ellie Kai wouldn’t be where it is today without them."


5. Baggu

Baggu creates Nylon, Canvas, and Leather Bags, constructed to minimize material waste and ensure high quality products. Their original bags were based on a standard plastic grocery bag, but designed to carry 2-3 times more weight. Baggu's vision is for everyone to keep a reusable bag with them at all times to reduce plastic use.

From the brand:

"Nylon and Canvas BAGGUs are ethically made in China. What does ‘ethically made’ mean? Our factories in China are audited yearly by an independent third party for occupational health and safety. These audits help ensure that humane work hours and wages are enforced, and that the facilities are safe. We also work with factories that minimize the impact of our production on the environment."


About The Author

Marisa Flacks is a lover of people, adventure, and ethical living. Originally from New Jersey, she now lives in Charlotte, North Carolina. She considers herself a global citizen and is passionate about creating opportunity for others around the world. Marisa is the founder of RISE Creative, a creative marketing agency serving ethical brands.