New report reveals a luxury we can’t afford

Press release - 17 February, 2014
Rome, 17 February 2014 – As Milan fashion week gets under way, Greenpeace International today revealed [1] that the same hazardous chemicals used in the manufacturing of fast fashion are used by ‘exclusive’ luxury brands - including Versace, Louis Vuitton and Dolce&Gabbana - to produce children’s items [2].

In addition, the concentration of one hazardous chemical (nonlyphenol ethoxylates or NPEs) in some items labelled “Made in Italy” could raise the question as to whether the clothing tested was entirely manufactured in Europe.

Chiara Campione, Fashion Duel project leader with Greenpeace Italy, said:

“Luxury brands thrive on the exclusivity and quality of their products. This report shows they are deceiving their customers with toxic lies. This also goes beyond luxury fashion - hazardous chemicals affect everyone. These brands need to Detox their supply chains and realise that people can see through their grand illusion.”

For the report, 27 products from eight luxury fashion brands were tested. 16 of the products tested positive for one or more of the following chemicals: nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs), phthalates, per- or polyfluorinated chemicals, and antimony. The highest concentration of NPEs was detected in a Louis Vuitton branded ballerina shoe while the highest concentration of PFCs was found in a Versace Jacket [3]. Some of these chemicals, when leached into the environment from factories and the clothes themselves, can accumulate in the world’s waterways and have hormone-disrupting properties.

“It’s time these luxury brands lived up to their reputation as fashion trendsetters, and started leading the toxic-free fashion revolution. By committing to Detox their supply chains, brands like Valentino and Burberry have shown that beautiful fashion doesn’t have to cost the earth. What are toxic addicts like Versace, Louis Vuitton, Dior or Dolce&Gabbana waiting for?” added Campione.


Chiara Campione, The Fashion Duel Project Leader
Phone: (+39) 347.0100310

Greenpeace International Press Desk
PressDesk Hot-line: +31 (0)20 718 24 70
PressDesk Email:

[1] See ‘A Little Story About a Fashionable Lie’, Greenpeace International, here.

[2] See ‘A Little Story About the Monsters in Your Closet” here.

[3] See ‘A Little Story About a Fashionable Lie’, Executive Summary here.

[4] Companies committed to Detox: Nike, Adidas Puma, H&M, M&S, C&A, Li-Ning, Zara, Mango, Esprit, Levi's, Uniqlo, Benetton, Victoria's Secret, G-Star Raw, Valentino, Coop, Canepa, Burberry and Primark

About the campaign:
Greenpeace’s Detox campaign is calling for a commitment from mayor brands to achieve a zero discharge level of all hazardous chemicals, by 2020. Currently, thanks to public pressure, 20 major companies [4] have already made major Detox commitments and are moving towards a transparent supply chain and toxic chemical elimination.