Often when people decide to start living a more eco-conscious life, the first step is ditching plastic straws or investing in reusable totes for the grocery store. Now don’t get me wrong—both of those changes are doing good for the planet, but if you want to make an even bigger impact, it might be time to rethink the way you shop for clothes. Fortunately, eco-friendly clothing brands have come a long way in terms of sustainability and style.
It’s no secret that the fashion industry is responsible for vast environmental damage, contributing 10 percent of global carbon emissions. According to Sustain Your Style, it’s the largest polluter in the entire world after the oil industry. Far from eco-friendly, the fashion industry produces untreated toxic wastewater that dumps into rivers and oceans, harming aquatic life and humans alike. It also uses 1.5 trillion liters of water every year, is releasing microfibers into the water that eventually end up in your food. Synthetic fibers take hundreds of years to decompose in landfills.
To ensure your wardrobe isn’t hurting the planet, start shopping sustainably. There’s an ever-growing list of companies that have made it their mission to create eco friendly clothing with responsible materials and sustainable practices throughout the entire process, from using solar-powered factories to compostable shipping materials. These are the best brands to find eco-friendly clothing with fashion-forward design.
8 eco-friendly clothing brands to shop right now
No matter what your denim needs may be—whether it’s jeans, jackets, skirts, or shorts—DL1961 has you covered. The eco-friendly clothing brand puts environmental awareness and sustainability at the forefront by being powered by solar energy and using ethically-sourced cotton and water-efficient botanic fibers. While a typical pair of jeans requires 1,500 gallons of water to produce, the company uses less than 10—then recycles 98 percent of that water with an on-site water recycling plant.
You won’t find cozier cotton products than Pact’s. The company only sources 100 percent organic cotton that’s just as soft as it is good for the planet. That means there are no toxic dyes or pesticides in your clothes, whether you’re rocking a bralette and undies or a pair of leggings and sweatshirt. There’s also a live count on the website that shows how many gallons of water have been saved by customers buying organic cotton products. (Spoiler: It’s a lot.)
If you wish designer clothes were more eco-friendly, meet Cienne. The brand might be pricey, but the high-quality items—which you’ll find on everyone from Emma Watson to Gwyneth Paltrow—are made with the environment in mind. The company works with artisans around the world, sourcing natural and sustainable fibers and reducing waste by designing in small batches. You’ll have one-of-a kind, environmentally-conscious pieces you’ll be proud to wear.
United By Blue is on a mission. The certified B-Corp has all the outdoor apparel you could ever need, yet it produces it in a way that protects planet you’re exploring while wearing it. Every product is created using responsible materials, including organic cotton and recycled polyester made from plastic bottles. The company also removes one pound of trash from the world’s oceans and waterways for every product sold. So far, that’s equated to more than 1.7 million pounds.
The next time you need to stock up on all your basics, head over to Alternative Apparel. All of the brand’s cozy tees, dresses, and sweats are crafted with organic and recycled materials, low-impact dyes, and water-conserving washes. The company also ships out the products in eco-friendly packaging that saves 2,100 trees, 860,000 gallons of water, and 400 cubic yards of landfill every year.
Threads 4 Thought wants to be as sustainable, ethical, and impactful as possible. The company’s eco-friendly clothing, which including T-shirts and activewear, is made from organic cotton, recycled polyester, and Lenzing Modal (which comes from beechwood). On top of that, the factories everything is made in has sustainable production processes and working conditions held to the highest certifications in the fashion industry.
With a name that means “green love” in French, Amour Vert was build with sustainability in mind. Not only are the pieces made in small batches to eliminate waste, but the fabrics used in the process are made from eco-friendly materials like beechwood fibers, organic cotton, Oeko-Tex certified silk, and Tencel (which is made from eucalyptus trees). Plus, when you buy a T-shirt, the company will plant a tree in North America—a promise the company has made good on at least 220,000 times.
People Tree is one of the original eco-friendly clothing brands. Since launching in 1991, every product has been made as ethically and sustainably as possible, allowing people to shop contemporary items made with organic cotton, low-impact dyes, Tencel Lyocell, and responsible wool, all created using traditional artisan skills. Because of these practices, it was the first fashion company to receive the World Fair Trade Organization product label.
Expand those eco-friendly vibes to the bedroom with these 15 sustainable bedding brands. Also, here’s everything you should know about going eco-keto, which makes a low-carb diet more environmentally-friendly.