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Dorothy Perkins

How ethical is Dorothy Perkins?

The Good Shopping Guide gives Dorothy Perkins, an online fast fashion brand owned by Boohoo Group PLC, a low Ethical Rating. Unfortunately, this brand receives a Good Shopping Guide Ethical Score in our Ethical Fashion Retailers Ratings Table and has not yet met our minimum benchmark. This brand has several areas to improve upon before it would likely qualify for our Ethical Accreditation.

In what areas does Dorothy Perkins perform poorly for its sustainability and ethical policies?

Dorothy Perkins scored low for the Environment, Animals, and People, partly because it is a fast fashion company and with that comes all kinds of ethical contraventions.

Although numerous subsidiaries of the Boohoo Group market their products as being produced exclusively of organic cotton (e.g., Burton, Nasty Gal, Dorothy Perkins), there is no certification to support this claim. Certification ensures that cotton, one of the “dirtiest crops,” was not grown in a way that endangered farmers, local ecosystems, animals, or cotton producers. Dorothy Perkins was therefore given a very low score for our Organic criteria.

PETA has also criticised parent, company, Boohoo for its use of wool in its products. Following this criticism, Boohoo came out to the media claiming that it would not sell wool products in its online stores. However, this article also attests that Boohoo revoked this promise after pushback from sheep farmers. Vegans may want to avoid Dorothy Perkins, as its products might still contain wool.

Dorothy Perkins’s track record with animal welfare infringements doesn’t improve much from there; Parent company, Boohoo received criticism for marketing actual fur—likely from a rabbit—as faux fur. This involves misleading consumers as well as slaughtering animals solely for fashion. This is yet another reason why those who are vegans, vegetarians, or who care about animal welfare may want to steer clear of this brand until it raises its bar and starts to work towards earning our Ethical Accreditation! We did not give Dorothy Perkins a high mark for its Animal Welfare Policy due to these events.

According to a 2020 report by Labour Behind the Label, Leicester (UK) garment workers producing exclusively for the Boohoo Group were paid as little as £3.50 per hour, far less than the UK minimum wage at the time of £8.72 for workers aged 25 and above. Additionally, the company is charged with dealing with plants that operated throughout the UK lockdown, putting employees at risk of Covid-19, and overtly threatening vulnerable employees.

Another Human Rights violation is discussed in The COVID Fashion Report, a version of Baptist World Aid Australia’s Ethical Fashion Report, which was published in 2020. The study is structured around six COVID Fashion Commitments, which require companies to demonstrate the steps they are taking to protect and support the most vulnerable members of their supply chain. Through its acts, Dorothy Perkins did not show that it was abiding by any of the COVID Fashion Commitments.

In a report released by the Environmental Audit Committee, Dorothy Perkins and Missguided were identified as two of the UK’s least environmentally friendly fashion companies (EAC). In a letter sent in November 2018, the EAC asked 16 British retailers to submit evidence indicating the measures they are doing to reduce the environmental impact of the clothing they sell. Additionally, the audit revealed that neither of the two companies previously mentioned had accepted the Action, Collaboration, Transformation labour rights contract, which aims to guarantee that all garment workers earn a living wage.

In what areas does Dorothy Perkins perform well?

Though the aims of the Dorothy Perkins Annual Report 2020 are ambiguous, Dorothy Perkins’s 2021 Sustainability Plan does improve somewhat by including a few objectives; these goals focus on packaging reduction and reducing operational carbon emissions by an average of 4.2% every year. However, with the Net Zero 2050 deadline, Dorothy Perkins will have to stick closely to that reduction percentage if it is to meet this global target.

Dorothy Perkins also has a thorough Code of Conduct; this kind of documentation means that both consumers and investors can hold companies to account, and see which brands are planning for a sustainable future. See Dorothy Perkins’s Code of Conduct here.

How can the Dorothy Perkins brand improve its Ethical Rating? 

The Good Shopping Guide’s score results from 15 ethical criteria in relation to Dorothy Perkins. To reach our Ethical Benchmark and qualify for our Ethical Accreditation, Dorothy Perkins has several issues to deal with, including its poor animal welfare standards and treatment of workers in its supply chain.

If your fashion brand values ethics and sustainability, why not check out The Good Shopping Guide’s Ethical Accreditation? Increase customer and investor confidence and stand out from the greenwash.


Ethical performance in category


GSG score


GSG category benchmark


Ethical Rating


  • Environmental Report


  • Organic


  • Nuclear Power


  • Better Cotton Initiative


  • Fossil Fuels



  • Animal Welfare



  • Armaments


  • Code of Conduct


  • Political Donations


  • Ethical Trading Schemes


  • Human Rights


  • Human Rights+



  • Ethical Accreditation


  • Other Criticisms


  • Other Criticisms+


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