Can you tell how ethical your clothing is by its price? Researchers have been trying to unpick the labour costs involved. But, to find out the true production cost of a garment is a tortuous process. Hannah Marriott reveals what you need to know to buy clothes with a clear conscience. "In 1970, for example, the average British household spent 7% of its annual income on clothing. This had fallen to 5.9% by 2020. Even though we are spending less proportionally, we tend to own more clothes. According to the UN, the average consumer buys 60% more pieces of clothing – with half the lifespan – than they did 15 years ago. Meanwhile, fashion is getting cheaper: super-fast brands such as Shein (which sells tie-dye crop tops for £1.49) and Alibaba (vest tops for $2.20), have boomed online, making high-street brands look slow-moving and expensive by comparison. But the correlation between price and ethics is knotty, to say the least."