So you’ve decided to live more sustainably, to dress more sustainably but struggling to really connect with brands and their stories? It can be a minefield navigating through all of the noise. Customers are more conscious of their impact now and companies know it. They’re doing everything they can to appeal to this ever-growing conscious market through either false or exaggerated claims and greenwashing.
We start off with a wonderful outdoor lifestyle brand, based in Cornwall, UK. They started their journey in 2003 in a flat above a surf shop; with one core ethos. To design clothing & wetsuits with functionality and sustainability at the core. Always remaining committed to product, environment, and people.
Finisterre is a certified B Corporation.
Another outdoor lifestyle company and this one needs little introduction. Mainly because they’re one of the most well-known global brands who’ve managed to uphold their sustainable status.
3. Pact Clothing
Known for their affordable price point and high quality; Pact creates certified organic clothing for all members of the family including both parents to toddlers and babies.
• GOTS Certified
Everlane are well known now for being advocates for radial transparency, allowing their customers to know exactly how the product they purchase has been made.
Womens apparel company and certified B corporation Able believes in ending generational poverty, with a specific focus on the empowerment of women.
This apparel brand celebrates its commitment to our planet with ethically crafted and sustainably designed products. They also plant ten trees for each item purchased. With a motto of “Buy one, plant ten,” Tentree believes that you don’t have to be a devoted environmentalist to make a difference. The brand has now planted over 42 million trees around the world and is well on the way to its goal of planting one billion trees by 2030.
Another wonderful British brand with strong sustainable and ethical values. Focused on fair wages and conscious trading, they also package products in completely recycled and recyclable materials.
Famous for their soft Egyptian cotton pieces, Kotn focuses on the essentials, doing the basics right. Beautifully understated pieces manufactured in safe working environments with fair wages throughout the supply chain.
9. Alternative Apparel
Trying to bring bargains and sustainability together, to be an affordable option without the negatives. This affordable brand uses recycled materials and processes
when possible during manufacturing, and the company ensures employees work in safe conditions and earn fair wages.
10. Thought Clothing
An eco-friendly clothing brand that focuses on organic ingredients/materials, including cotton, bamboo, and hemp. Based in the UK but ships worldwide.
11. Ref Jeans by Reformation
A company aiming to reduce denim related waste by using a third of the water used by competitor denim companies.
12. Girlfriend Collective
They do Activewear well, really well. Inclusive of a wide variety of sizes, Girlfriend Collective use old recycled bottles and fishing nets to create their garments. All are made in Vietnamese factories where wages are fair and working conditions are maintained at a high level.
13. Rent The Runway
A massive directory of brands and garments; RTRW is a platform for re-use. An alternative to buying new, bringing in circularity to fashion. Garments can be rented on a subscription basis, delivered in reusable bags, and dry-cleaned sustainably once returned. Rental fashion is one of the most exciting innovations in the industry and likely to feature more prominently over the coming year or two.
14. Isabelle Fox
A luxury brand, creating timeless & traditional garments with high-quality processes and materials. They also create bags from leftover fabrics and remain direct-to-consumer to avoid unnecessary waste from the supply chain.
15. Paper London – Swimwear
Paper London creates beautiful women’s apparel, but it’s their swimwear that has received so many mentions. The pieces are made from recycled fishing nets, which would have taken 600 years to decompose.
A brand born from creating women’s apparel designed on men’s apparel. For the women who lean towards male styles. Tradlands hold themselves to high standards for both quality and sustainability, with garments made in small batches by independent artisans.
An Apparel brand for both men and women, with sustainability at the core of every stage of production. From fairer wages for garment workers to sustainable packaging. Outerknown does understated and timeless pieces well.
One of the world’s most famous brands and for good reason. Their denim is timeless and signifies durability and long-term use. They use ethical cotton, innovative water-efficient processes, and recycle their denim wherever possible.
If you love timeless classics and capsule wardrobes, you’ll love Cuyana. Focusing on the beautifully and consciously made pieces to last a lifetime. They also have their ‘Lean Closet’ initiative, where they make it easy for you to donate clothing to women in need, in exchange for credit towards your next Cuyana purchase.
Vetta wants to help you in building a 5-piece capsule wardrobe that will serve you for years to come. A long-lasting approach to how we dress rather than promoting mass consumerism. Their partner factory also sources 70 per cent of their energy from solar power.
21. Hackwith Design House
HDH creates each piece to order, ensuring less waste and to make your garment special. They believe in making each product, your favourite wardrobe item. They use colour palettes that are always in style; for minimalists, lovers of the basics, they should be a go-to for you.
This brand was born in Paris and they look to be as close to zero-waste as they possibly can. In 2017, Sezane created a philanthropic initiative, Demain, to help disadvantaged children access education and equal opportunities.
Recently famous for its new range of ethical shoes, Veja has been running since 2005 creating sneakers with a positive impact at every stage of the supply chain. Ethically & sustainably sourced materials, fair wages, and a conscious approach to marketing and consumerism. A brand you can feel good about supporting.
Another brand for high-quality ethically made trainers. Their motto of “Meaningful Steps to Inspire Change” is pertinent as they’ve already managed to plant 63,936 trees through producing their trainers with organic and recycled materials. They’re also determined to be as transparent as possible on their reforestation projects and production in Portugal.
25. Eileen Fisher
An industry leader in sustainable and ethical fashion and they believe in redesigning a broken fashion industry. They produce the highest quality of durable garments and are inclusive across many sizes. By 2025, the brand’s vision is to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions created during the production and shipping of their garments by 25 per cent.
26. Mara Hoffman
Mara Hoffman is all about opening conversations about clothing manufacturing practices and radical transparency. They use sustainable materials in abundances such as Econyl, Tencel, Repreve, hemp, linen, and organic cotton. They also consider their collateral such as opting for compostable poly bags for delivery, sustainably sourced buttons, and soy-based ink for marketing initiatives.
27. People Tree
Sustainable fashion may seem like a young industry but People Tree has been around for over 20 years, bringing fair trade clothing to the fore. Partnering with fair trade artisans and farmers, they’ve built a reputation on ethical and sustainable practices.
28. Sirplus Clothing
Many lists for sustainable brands lack representation for menswear but Sirplus are flying the flag superbly. A brilliant British brand that creates luxury garments with deadstock/ waste fabrics wherever they can.
Tonle champions zero-waste fashion. They want to alter the way we see clothing and use reclaimed fabrics whenever possible. They’ll even use the small fragments left at the end to create tags and labels.
The production team is based in Phnom Penh and are paid fairly, go on retreats, and work in a supportive environment where training is offered, as well as opportunities to be promoted. Tonle also uses natural dyes, which are safer for workers and customers.
We end with a wonderfully inclusive and body positive brand for women. Sotela places great importance on providing clothing that can ride the ebb and flow of life. Whether you’re pregnant, experience weight gain or loss; their garments will allow you to feel comfortable and confident. Made by women, for women, they use eco-friendly materials and packages in recycled materials.
By Nidhi Singh