Yes, TK Maxx is a fast fashion brand.
TK Maxx is a European sub-brand of TJX Group, an American apparel and homeware conglomerate. It is the parent of TK Maxx as well as TJ Maxx, HomeGoods, Homesense, Marshalls, Sierra and Winners. It was founded in 1976 by white American businessman Bernard Cammarata (worth $20.3 million), and Zayre, a chain of discount superstores. Today, the TJ Maxx group operates a total of 4524 stores across America, Canada, Europe, and Australia.
TK Maxx is a fast fashion brand due to the scale at which it sells clothing.
Fashion Revolution Transparency Rating: 13/100
Ethical Consumer Score: 2.5/15
Good On You Sustainability Rating: 2/5
Additional Reasons Why TK Maxx Is A Fast Fashion Brand
- On its corporate site, TJX provides a clear Code of Conduct and outlines that there shall be no child labour, but permits children aged 14+ to work for them where legal. To me, that’s still a child.
- The group seems to be grasping at straws to show that it is a diverse and inclusive workplace, noting that ‘67% of employees reflect diversity’ across any kind of protected characteristic on its corporate site. That’s a skewed statistic if I ever saw one…
- TJX’s Climate and Energy Policy only takes into account its own stores, and not its supply chain.
- In the UK, TK Maxx employees experience a gender pay gap, where women earn 91p for every £1 that men earn when comparing median hourly pay.
- In 2020, TJX stopped paying their garment factories, using the excuse of covid-19 reducing demand (despite signing contracts for the work, and legally owing payment). They are still yet to pay up, and have also failed to commit to the Transparency Pledge.
- In 2019, the House of Commons’ Fixing Fashion Report found that TK Maxx was was one of several companies rated as ‘least engaged’ in sustainable fashion and labour market initiatives according to Ethical Consumer.
- In the same year, the American brand had to publicly apologise for racially profiling a customer’s child.
- The TK Maxx has been found to use three different types of dark patterns to make its online customers feel pressure to shop.
Sustainable Alternatives To TK Maxx
If you’re looking to stop shopping at TK Maxx, I recommend checking out second-hand sites that offer the same thrifting thrill without the impact, as well as the affordable brands listed in my guide to 150+ sustainable fashion brands, and those in my guide to ethical homewares. If you are still going to shop at TK Maxx, consider purchasing only from third-party brands with better credentials, such as The Body Shop or Stella McCartney.
This post 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, Wikipedia, and sites linked throughout. The Transparency Rating is from Fashion Transparency Index 2021. All information is assumed correct at date of publication.