June is Pride Month, and this year, like every year, fashion and beauty brands are showing their support with Pride-themed collections, but this year more brands are being vocal about supporting Pride than ever before. Fashion brands can no longer afford to be quiet about civil rights; any from Black Lives Matter to transgender rights, and there are still some brands using it as a sales front, rather than fully supporting it.
One of the initial signs of profit-before-people, is looking at the country of manufacturing. If the Pride-themed products are being produced in a place that oppresses LGBTQ people, why buy from and support the company? ‘Pinkwashing’ is a term and marketing strategy describing the action of promoting products and clothes using gay-related issues in positive ways to hide attention from actual beliefs, in order to be perceived as current and tolerant.
Some brands are supporting the LGBTQ communities genuinely and ignoring any profit value of collections by raising money for Pride charities and openly supporting causes. This year, a lot of brands are also focusing on the education of their employees, working to create safer and more inclusive workplaces. One company smashing this is PVH Corp., which is the parent company of Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger. They are offering year-round education and awareness for their employees.
Here is a list of other fashion brands giving back for Pride Month 2021:
Abercrombie & Fitch: They are continuing their 11-year partnership with the Trevor Project, an LGBTQ suicide prevention charity, with a new Pride-themed collection. The brand will also be donating $200,000 to the charity too.
Balenciaga: Balenciaga are releasing a capsule collection for Pride Month with 15% of the sales being donated to the Trevor Project.
Becca Cosmetics: They have released a special edition shade of their best-selling highlighter, and from the sales, donating $50,000 to the Trevor Project.
Diesel: Diesel are re-releasing their collection to support Diversity, an Italian organisation that promotes diversity in the workplace.
Fabletics: Their Pride Month collection is called ‘United in Pride’ and features rainbow tie-die pieces with graphic text expressing inclusivity. They are donating $50,000 from the collection sales to GLAAD.
Happy Socks: Happy Socks have decided against a Pride Month ad this year and instead donated all the ad campaign budget to InterPride, a global pride event organisation.
Kate Spade: They have teamed up with the Trevor Project, releasing a rainbow-themed collection of t-shirts, sweatshirts, facemasks and handbags.
North Face: North Face are releasing their first ever Pride collection, which includes Pride-themed versions of their best sellers. They will also be donating $70,000 to Brave Trails.
Savage x Fenty: They are releasing their first Pride collection, and the campaign features 13 people from the LGBTQ+ community. The sales will be donated to multiple charities.
Pride-themed fashion has been popular in the retail marketing calendar for many years, but it’s not just about profit, and for brands, it’s more than being the biggest parade sponsor. We must not confuse solidarity with social agenda. It takes genuine desire and passion to create change for the LGBTQ communities, not just an embroidered rainbow flag.
If you’ve enjoyed this blog and want to read more of our blogs, click here.