Yes, ASOS is a fast fashion brand.
ASOS is one of the largest online fashion retailers in the UK, selling clothes to over 22 million customers annually. It was founded by three white British men, Nick Robertson, Andrew Regan, and Quentin Griffiths (who are now collectively worth over £100 million).
In 2020, ASOS stopped paying its garment factories, using the excuse of covid-19 reducing demand (despite signing contracts for the work, and legally owing payment). After external pressure, ASOS promised to pay their garment factories, but it should never have come to that in the first place.
In terms of sustainability, ASOS admits to using only 34% of sustainably-sourced fibres, and they provide only basic supply chain transparency.
ASOS is also part of the Sustainable Clothing Action Plan, a voluntary scheme that UK Government insisted was good enough to clean up the fashion industry without the aid of any further regulations as recommended by the Fixing Fashion Report (hint, it’s not).
In May 2019, ASOS unveiled their Responsible Edit, which was essentially a re-skinned version of their Eco Edit, but sadly did not include many of the independent sustainable brands on the site, and instead dumped all of ASOS’ clothes into the mix, because they are made with Better Cotton Initiative-approved cotton. This is not sustainable, or responsible.
Transparency Rating: 55/100
Sustainability Rating: 3/5
This snippet is part of a larger guide to UK fast fashion brands, which goes into more detail about the issues with fast fashion, why it will never be sustainable, and how to make your wardrobe more sustainable.
Data for this review is taken from the brand’s website, corporate website, and Wikipedia. The Transparency Rating is from Fashion Transparency Index 2020. The Sustainability Rating is from Good On You.