How Some of the Biggest Fashion Houses are Helping the Crisis

April 16, 2020 239 min reading

There seems to be just one thought on everyone’s mind at the minute, and that is the coronavirus crisis. As it continues to spread across the world, it’s something that has affected everyone in some way, including businesses. Many industries are having to adjust to the current circumstances, and the fashion industry is no exception.

Many businesses are having to make changes and adjust to life in lockdown, with usual routines broken and many workers now having to work from home. However, in the midst of it all, some of the biggest fashion houses are aiding the effort to fight coronavirus.

New initiatives from fashion companies

Some of the most well-known names in fashion are embracing the change to their production lines, offering essentials needed for crucial health products. While designer handbags and luxury fashion aren’t exactly necessary right now, it’s important that companies are able to join forces and take corporate responsibility to a whole new level. Luxury brands are having to find new ways to stay relevant and continue engaging with their customers.

This is why luxury fashion houses like LVMH, who own a huge list of impressive brands such as Dior, Fendi, Givenchy and Louis Vuitton, are transforming their manufacturing facilities to produce public health products. L’Oréal and Hermès are also doing similar. It gives them a way to contribute to the efforts and ensure they doing their part.

Hand sanitiser and masks from designer brands

While you probably won’t be seeing Dior branded face masks, some of the world’s most prestigious brands are helping to create some of the hygiene products used in the fight against the virus.

Just 72 hours after the French government issued a call to the industry for help, LVMH had manufactured 15 tonnes of sanitising gel within its production sites for Parfums Christian Dior, Givenchy and Guerlain. When working at full steam, the sites can produce 50 tonnes a week for hospitals in Paris.

Following from that impressive start, the LVMH group had also ordered 40 million masks from a Chinese supplier to help address the shortage in France.

Other brands have quickly followed in their footsteps. The French workshops of Balenciaga and Yves Saint Laurent began to manufacture masks, while both Gucci and Prada began manufacturing and donating masks and medical overalls to Italy.

In times where non-essential industrial production has been shut down in Italy, this move by some of the world’s biggest fashion houses is unprecedented.

Traditional donations

Luxury fashion houses are known for their expensive price tags, and they are now doing their part to repay some of that fortune. Italian brands such as Versace and Giorgio Armani pledged donations to hospitals. Moncler gave €10 million to support the construction of a hospital in Milan, creating 40 intensive care units.

Other labels have begun to donate proceeds from online sales to the fight against the outbreak too.

What effect will this have on the future?

The coronavirus crisis may help to reinforce the true value of luxury, as well as a newfound appreciation for the fashion industry as a whole. For so long, customers have been used to being able to order clothes online and receive them the next day, and now that supply chain has been disrupted.

Customers may now experience increased awareness of sustainability and wellbeing, which can impact their priorities when it comes to buying from their favourite brands. While it is an incredibly difficult time for many businesses, there will be a time when we look back on the crisis and applaud our efforts for fighting through it, whatever the outcome may be.

The author of this article is Anna Marianna White

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