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Posted on 14 May 2016


Socially conscious consumers are beginning to reject and resist the mantra that low prices are a good thing. As Walmart drops prices to freakish lows, and big box stores keep pushing prices of consumer goods to unprecedentedly low levels, consumers are starting to ask questions. Who made my clothes? And what is the true cost of these clothes? The 2011 fire in the Bangladeshi garment factory that made Joe Fresh products resulted in hundreds of dead woman and children. Quick to rid themselves of negative press, Joe Fresh passed the blame on to the sub contractor who owned the factory. Yet, as intelligent creatures, we all know this all seems a bit dodgy. How good is that deal on those super cute skinny jeans when you know that a Bangladeshi woman made them, locked inside a stuffy factory with inadequate safety procedures and a complete lack of human rights. Why do we need to save the extra $10 dollars on our 30th pair of pants, when it means that on the other side of the world, so many people are suffering to satisfy our seemingly insatiable appetite for cheap fashion? 

Some of the coolest brands out there started off as made in Canada, and are now outsourced to places where prices are lower, conditions are deplorable, and workers have no rights. Lululemon started out as a Vancouver success story: locally made, fashionable yoga wear tapped into a burgeoning market of healthy west coasters who wanted to feel good about their gym wear, without wearing ratty old t-shirts and unflattering grey spandex shorts.  Fast forward a decade, and Lululemon is getting attention for all the wrong reasons.  Owner Chip Wilson created a media shit storm by blaming woman's fat thighs for Lululemon's crappy quality pants, which still ring in at about $100 bucks a pop, but are made in China and pill terribly if you dare to wear them any time your thighs touch.  Like for example, in any number of yoga poses, or if you have the muscular thighs of a snowboarder, crossfitter, mountain biker, horseback rider, swimmer, runner, triathlete, weight lifter or any other athletically built ladies out there who are ironically enough Lulelemon's target demographic.   

Here at Bikini Empire, our surf bikinis are made in Canada, in a small factory in East Vancouver. We import our fabric from a company in Italy that runs their factory entirely off solar panels. We pay our seamstresses living wages, that directly puts money back into the local economy. Our philosophy is not that you should never buy things, but when you do, think long and hard about what your dollars are going to support! 

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