What is a living wage?

Here at THE-CØDED, we only work with factories across the globe that offer their hard working garment producers a real living wage. The definition of a real living wage in the UK is ‘a wage that is high enough to maintain a normal standard of living.’ This could mean having enough money to do a full weekly shop, or having enough money left over after living expenses for an emergency trip to the dentist. 


A living wage is different from the National Minimum Wage, which is the hourly wage that employees in the UK are entitled to. However, it’s important to note that a real living wage differs between countries due to varying standards of living, so many of our manufacturing partners adopt their own national living wage requirements. This means their employees are paid a fair wage that allows them to live comfortably.

What are the real costs of living?

The amount of income you need each month to be able to say you're living comfortably varies depending on where you live. In more costly places, such as London, a higher income is required to live comfortably. Keep in mind, however, that this quantity is entirely dependent on your personal expectations. Everyone is different, and therefore defining what it means to live a comfortable life can be challenging. However, we’re trying to bridge that gap by defining a real living wage with each of our partners.

What does a living wage mean to THE-CØDED?

We believe that everyone who works in the garment industry should be paid a real living wage. If enough businesses do this, governments worldwide will begin to understand that raising the minimum wage to a living wage level would not result in a loss of business, as employee turnover would improve dramatically.


For example, we work with a factory in India defined by cøde 018. We chose to work with this manufacturer because they pay a living wage to their workforce. In 2018, the living wage in India increased to 10300 INR (Indian rupee), from 10100 INR the previous year. The cost of living in India is significantly lower than that of the UK, but rest assured, the salaries paid by our factories allow their workers to live comfortably and care for their families.

All of our manufacturing partners receive a fair, living wage

We will only ever work with factories who pay their workers a living wage, which is what they deserve for producing high-quality and ethical clothing. We believe an ethical fashion movement starts with the workers - without them, THE-CØDED’s mission would not be possible. 


To find out more about our innovative ethical fashion shopping platform, you can read about our story and how it works. We define our clothes using a single code, meaning you can find out exactly where your clothes are made and by whom. Shop our ethically made womenswear and menswear collections to learn more about each partner and the story behind their cøde.

Working with us

Are you a living wage employer in the fashion and textiles manufacturing industry? We’d love to hear from you! We’re constantly looking for new partners to work with that align with our values. Get in touch!

November 01, 2021 — James Browne
Tags: living wage