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Circularity, explained

As part of the fashion community, we are aware of the challenges that are facing our industry today. The planet doesn’t have enough natural resources (water, raw materials and energy) to continue making clothes in the way we've become accustomed to – it's time for a wake-up call.

At COS, we want to be part of the solution, not the problem. And we’re doing everything we can to create a future we want to see, while knowing we still have a lot to learn along the way. To achieve this, we need to maximise our resources, minimise our waste and keep our products and materials in circulation to avoid using up finite resources. This is what we call circularity.

Our aim is to have all our products designed for circularity by 2025. This means making sure our products are used more, made to be made again, and made from safe and recycled or renewable materials. And this doesn’t stop at our collections, it’s in everything we do – from building new stores and the packaging we use to the day-to-day management of our business.

We have always been proud of the quality of the resources we use – and treating them with respect is at the heart of what we do. Our brand was built on a foundation of creating clothes to last, so sustainable design practices have been at our core since day one. But we know that this is not enough. There are so many more opportunities that will allow us to go beyond expectations and take more responsibility for what we create.

So far, we have already made huge steps in making our collections from materials that are 100% sustainability sourced. This includes our Repurpose project, an ongoing initiative where we have significantly increased the amount of recycled fibres to make our designs. We were among the first to launch our own resale platform, COS Resell, and since then have continued to explore new ways to extend the life of our clothes – from restoring and reselling damaged designs to collecting pre-loved pieces in store to be given a second life or recycled. We’ve progressed behind the scenes too, introducing new systems so that our store teams can share, swap and store interior fittings rather than throw them away.

As part of the H&M group, we also collaborate with the experts at the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, whose work helps to accelerate the transition to a circular economy through pre-competitive innovation programmes, allowing us to further explore solutions and work towards a more circular business model.

This is just the start. We are constantly exploring more circular materials, design strategies and system solutions to make clothing that looks and feels good, from the inside out. It’s what we owe you. It’s what our industry owes the world.