H&M Ups Sustainability Effort With Jeans Redesign Collection

The collection follows denim production guidelines from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation that the company agreed to in 2019.

By Obi Anyanwu on October 15, 2020

H&M today launches the H&M Jeans Redesign collection for Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Make Fashion Circular initiative.

The collection, hitting select global stores and the H&M web site, is comprised of workwear-inspired jeans, jackets, an overshirt, tote bag and bucket hat in deep indigo, mid-blue, light gray and washed black, ranging from $9.99 to $59.99. The denim fabric used for the collection is organic cotton, up to 35 percent recycled cotton and used dyes that reduced water waste and energy consumption, all adhering to guidelines set by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

H&M also used the screened chemistry method to select safer materials, did not use conventional plating on metal trims and used Tencel threads so the products could be recycled easily.

“When it comes to making jeans more circular, we are the experts. We have a lot of competence in the company when it comes to sustainability issues,” said Jon Loman, designer at H&M. “We have advanced technical knowledge both in the design teams and at our production organization, not to mention the expertise that is with the suppliers we work with. EMF has of course been the catalyst to set the level of ambition and has facilitated with some particular technical issues, but we have worked essentially within our own organization after the guidelines were defined.”

H&M’s Jeans Redesign collection.

Loman added that at the end of use, customers are encouraged to leave the garments in H&M’s garment collecting bins at its stores.

“All garments that are left in these bins are sorted into three categories; for Re-wear, Re-use and if [that] isn’t possible: Recycling,” he added. “The recycled garment can become a part of new denims. I am confident in saying that we will continue to push for more innovations when it comes to sustainability and circularity, with the learnings from this collection going into future denim collections.”

Ellen MacArthur Foundation created The Jeans Redesign project in 2019 as part of its Make Fashion Circular initiative, inviting brands, retailers and garment manufacturers to openly report and be transparent on their denim production, including methods and pieces produced. H&M signed on last year along with Gap, Tommy Hilfiger, Lee Jeans and The Reformation and others.

Participants in the Jeans Redesign initiative are expected to bring their new jeans to market by May 2021.

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