RefScale methodology

Our sustainability research team created a life-cycle assessment tool to calculate the CO2 water, and waste footprints of Reformation products, as well as comparable products. We used primary data whenever available; otherwise we referenced secondary data and existing life-cycle assessments for select fabrics or processes. Finally, Clean Agency, a third-party sustainability consulting team, reviewed our methodology and data sources to verify the validity of our calculations.

Research boundary

The following boundary applies to our CO2 and water calculations:

Research boundary

For waste, there is very limited data on waste outputs in the fashion supply chain (fiber cultivation, fabric processing, dyeing, etc.). Instead, we focus on material wastes that we control directly through manufacturing and fulfillment processes:

How do we define comparable conventional clothing?

We select comparable conventional clothing characteristics based on what fabrics and processes are most common for products sold in the US.

Assumptions for comparable conventional clothing:

What practices make Reformation different?

Other assumptions

Current limitations

There are some slight variations in system boundary and geographic focus for secondary sources. We’ve done our best to compare “apples-to-apples” but in some cases, this is very difficult with existing data. We do our best to focus on cradle-to-gate, and will select the most thorough and conservative estimates when competing studies and data are available. We are currently unable to identify LCA reporting on Recycled Cashmere yarn, and are looking for better data for Alpaca, Cashmere, and Silk. If you can help, please let us know!

Research citations

Research citations -- Fabric origin Research citations -- Transportation Research citations -- Dyeing Research citations -- Manufacturing Research citations -- Commercial garment wash Research citations -- Packaging Research citations -- Shipment Research citations -- Garment care Research citations -- End of life Research citations -- Waste