Sustainable Fashion report - Fashion consumption has become a severe problem that can no longer be ignored. So much so, that you might want to think twice before you load up with the latest creations, at the mall.

A recent sustainable fashion report released by Green America, a nonprofit organisation committed to environmental justice, looked at the manufacturing practices of 14 American-based apparel labels.

According to this sustainable fashion report, four companies, in particular, have failed to disclose the toxic chemicals they use to manufacture apparel and accessories. The four brands were: Forever21, J.Crew, Urban Outfitters, and Carter's.

"These four labels have no policies about the use of toxic chemicals. At least, not publicly available and such lack of transparency is a serious problem," says Caroline Chen, the Campaign Manager at GA's.

"It's science now; the use of toxic chemicals in textile manufacturing is bad for both workers and the planet. Moreover, as some of these chemicals remain in the fabrics, they could be harming the end consumer as well," she added.

"These four labels have no policies about the use of toxic chemicals. At least, not publicly available and such lack of transparency is a serious problem," says Caroline Chen, the Campaign Manager at GA's.

"It's science now; the use of toxic chemicals in textile manufacturing is bad for both workers and the planet. Moreover, as some of these chemicals remain in the fabrics, they could be harming the end consumer as well," she added.

Similarly, Carter's insisted that it has an internal list of restricted chemicals; however, it is not for the general public. "Fantastic! Then, how can we know which chemicals are present in Carter's apparel designed for infants and children?" argued Green America's representative.

It's essential to note that this research did not test apparel for traces of toxic chemicals. The study looked at whether companies had sound, publicly-disclosed sustainable management policies in place, and if these companies were acting to eradicate toxic compounds from their supply chain.

There's no secret that fashion manufacturing is a filthy business. Over 8,000 chemicals are used throughout the textile-making process. Pesticides for cotton and other fibres, bleaching compounds, dying solutions, all used to wash fabrics or print patterns. Overall, the amount used is estimated at 43 million tons of chemicals every year.

In fact, the Swedish Chemicals Agency examined 2,400 chemicals regularly used in textile manufacturing and found that almost all were toxic. Toxins such as polyfluorinated chemicals used in waterproofing clothing are known to affect liver health and disrupt hormonal functions. Heavy metals used in dying are carcinogenic and damaging to your nervous system. Azo dyes, the most used dyes, release carcinogenic compounds in the air during the dying process.