Our Rating System

Our Rating System

Changing Room’s scoring system provides transparency into the impact of clothing products and brands, providing consumers a tool to understand fashion products’ environmental and social impact. We offer a path to making more sustainable purchases through our low-impact suggestions.

We understand “sustainability” as two-pronged– incorporating both environmental and social and ethical responsibility. With that understanding, our rating system scores products and their brand based on environmental impact and efforts to protect those involved in their manufacturing process.

Our goal is to empower consumers to choose their impact and make a #CHNG toward more sustainable fashion.

Score Key

Our score ranges from 1 (Let’s Avoid) to 5 (Great), representing an average of each of the scoring categories.

This product is made of materials with the smallest possible environmental impacts (e.g. organic or recycled fabrics) and was produced using low-impact manufacturing processes. Likewise, the brand is implementing environmentally and ethically sustainable practices across its value chains.

This product is made of materials with limited environmental impacts and the brand has taken well-documented steps to improve the sustainability of its manufacturing processes and supply chains.

This product does not include materials with serious environmental impacts and the brand has taken some actions to reduce the environmental and social impacts across its supply chains.

The product is made of materials with some significant environmental impacts (such as high-water usage), and the brand hasn’t made much effort to improve the sustainability of its manufacturing processes and supply chains.

This product is made of materials with large environmental impacts, such as energy-intensive growing and manufacturing, high pollution capacity, and limited circularity potential. Likewise, the brand discloses little concrete data about the sustainability measures in place across its value chains.

Breakdown of our Impact Score

The Changing Room Score incorporates data and information on two main areas pertaining to products and brands:

Social & Ethical Responsibility and Environmental Impact

These categories are broken down further into more specific subcategories that allow for a more comprehensive score. The data and information used in our rating system include over 130+ material impact data points, 2000+ brand data points from audit reports, all these sources were identified by our team as the primary factors needed to accurately determine sustainability.

Social & Ethical Responsibility considers:

Labor Practices



There is no global definition for a living wage. It is generally understood to be a wage that allows workers and their families to meet their basic needs.

Workplace Safety

Conditions must ensure protection against occupational injuries and ill-health for all workers, together with effective labor relations through ongoing engagement and social dialogue.

Data Sources: Good on You - People, Business of Fashion (BoF) Index - Worker's right

Animal Rights


Use of Animal - Derived Materials

Animal-derived materials (i.e. leather & fur) result in high GHG emissions and environmental degradation from farming pollution to product treatment pollution (i.e. leather tanning). These materials also require the slaughter of animals that are often factory-farmed.

Data Sources: Good on You - Animals

Corporate Governance

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

A commitment to and prioritization of a diverse hiring strategy (i.e. race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, disability, etc.) at all levels of a company’s structure (entry-level to C-suite)..

Data Sources: Good on You - People

Environmental Impact considers:

Water Usage



Eutrophication results from excess inputs of nutrients (sewage discharges, agriculture runoff, etc.) during fiber harvesting and textile processing. It causes a dense growth of plant life and the death of animal life due to a lack of oxygen.


Wastewater and Pollution

The fashion industry impacts water resources at every stage of the value chain. Water pollution is the result of agricultural runoff and textile factories dumping untreated toxic wastewaters directly into waterways.

Data Sources: HIGG - Materials Sustainability Index; Good on You - Planet; BoF Index - Water Chemicals

Greenhouse Gas Emissions


Scope 1

Emissions resulting directly from company operations (i.e. company facilities).

Scope 2

Indirect emissions associated with any fuel or operations purchased by the company (i.e. purchased electricity).

Scope 3

The hardest emissions to monitor, and refer to downstream activities (i.e. transportation & distribution).

Data Sources: HIGG - Materials Sustainability Index; Good on You - Planet; BoF Index - Emissions




Renewable fibers refer to natural fibers sourced from plants (i.e. wool & cotton). Non-renewable fibers refer to synthetic, fossil-based fibers (i.e. spandex & polyester).



Recyclability refers to the break-down of garments back into their original fibers (e.g. a sweater into wool), to be reproduced into a new garment. This can be done for natural fibers (i.e. wool & cotton), and synthetic fibers (i.e. nylon) which are melted down and spun back into fabric.



Biodegradable fabrics (e.g. cotton & wool) are naturally occurring and break down faster than nonbiodegradable fabrics (e.g. polyester, spandex) without leaving behind any harmful chemicals



When you wash synthetic fibers (e.g. polyester, nylon), they shed plastic fibers that are too small to be caught by treatment plants (smaller than 5mm). These micro plastics flow into waterways, harming wildlife and contributing to oxygen depletion and warming waters.

Data Sources: Changing Room Methodology; BoF Index - Waste

Data Sources

The data sources used in our rating system are comprised of various third-party sources, such as Good on You, the HIGG Materials Sustainability Index (MSI), the Business of Fashion (BoF) Index and the Fashion Transparency Index. We also gather insights and information through academic papers and government reports, and different certifications (e.g. Fair Trade, Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), BLUESIGN). Additionally, we gather information directly from brands and retailers.

We utilize these various data sources based on their focus areas and the level of transparency in their own process to ensure quality and credibility in the information and data we synthesize.

How It Works

Our rating system incorporates publicly available information and establishes two main layers that guide our scoring methodology: the brand and the product. These two layers act as initial data sources for our overall score map above, feeding into both the environmental and social impact considerations.

We are constantly working towards improving our methodology. Our goal is to provide more detailed and granular insights from brands' supply chains. We are in the process of making our current algorithm open source, but in the meantime, if you have any questions please feel free to email us.

1. Brand audits and reports

As a proxy of brand sustainability commitment and impact, we are relying on reputable third-party sources (e.g. Good on You, BoF Index, Fashion Revolution) that rate brand supply chains and manufacturing. The criteria used are focused on a commitment to transparency and measurable actions to limit environmental impact and increase ethical governance and labor practice.

Some questions being asked:

Are brands relying on social energy or fossil fuels?

Are they using a lot of harmful chemicals in their dying process?

What are their commitments to reduce their harmful environmental impacts?

2. Production, materials, and certifications

The production impact estimates the overall impact from the manufacturing process including the water and solid waste incurred by different material compositions. We look at the average impact that a garment has depending on the estimated weight of garments, the estimated carbon footprint and water consumption of the material and production, as well as end-of-life and circularity metrics (microplastic pollution, biodegradability, etc.).

a. Linear production impact

We define “linear impact” in the supply chain as the impact measured until the garment is sold. We estimate the environmental impact of the production of clothes across different processes (e.g. from farming to weaving and dyeing) by combining the Higg Index on material sustainability impact and scientific research on the life cycle assessment of different materials.

b. Circularity and end-of-life

Currently, most brands only refer to the linear impact disregarding the circularity and end-of-life. Our circularity impact measurement considers the impact incurred from using the product and its end-of-life impacts, such as the product’s renewability, recyclability, biodegradability, and microplastic pollution potential.

Some questions being asked:

Will this product contribute to shedding microplastics?

Is this product recyclable or will it accumulate as waste when thrown out?

Are the sourcing of the materials well-documented, comprehensive, and credible?

c. Part component and material percentages

Sometimes brands don’t provide breakdown information about the total material composition of the garments, but provide information by parts (e.g. Shell: 70% polyester 30% cotton, lining: 3% spandex 27% cotton 70% polyester). From the type of garment, we are able to estimate and map the total material composition of the garment to score the garments fully.

Work-in progress and future improvements

We rely on data reports from notable ratings or auditing companies, however, they often do not capture information about smaller brands' supply chain practices yet. We are working towards bridging this gap.

We are in the process of adding certifications into our algorithm to add accuracy and granularity in our mapping of materials impacts. Furthermore, we aspire to add transportation and logistics data to reflect more accurate carbon footprint and energy consumption scores across the entire value chain. Currently, from the opacity of the industry, it’s difficult to accurately assess chemical usage.