Sustainable development and the aspirational male consumer: Tengri, making the case for sustainable luxury

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Luxury is an industry that defines its value through the quality of its raw materials, that fosters creativity, elevates artisanship and relies on brand heritage and local production to underpin the provenance of its products, and justify its pricing strategy, and as such can be considered as embodying many of the practices of sustainability (Amatulli et al. 2017; Kapferer 2020). Yet despite public commitments and pledges for better business, both financial and cultural factors have contributed to a lack of progress in implementing the necessary system changes implied by slow fashion, sustainable development and circular economy.
Social enterprises use business to address social and environmental issues. In Tengri’s case founder Nancy Johnston was inspired by her experiences travelling with Mongolia’s yak herders where she was confronted with the harshness of the nomadic way of life and threats to its continuing existence. She was driven to action when she juxtaposed these conditions with the promoted glamour of the luxury fashion industry, which relies on supplies of ingredients from just such workers. This article explores how Tengri combines social and environmental awareness with luxury product development incorporating the UN SDGs into a sustainable luxury menswear brand in a virtuous cycle of ethical fashion consumption and production.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCritical Studies in Men's Fashion
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 30 May 2021


  • sustainability, luxury, fashion, social-enterprise, innovation, sustainable development


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