How slow can you go? The latest fashion trend isn’t a seasonal colour or a must-have style: It’s the concept of sustainable fashion and ethical clothing. The textiles industry is wreaking havoc on the environment between the processes to make clothing and the waste when it gets tossed, so brands and consumers alike have taken a much-needed interest in improving these issues.
And while there’s no such thing as “eco-friendly clothing” — i.e. all garments have at least some negative impact on the environment — there are brands working diligently to help make a difference. Different brands focus on combating various issues in the fashion industry – some just one, while others are tackling multiple. We’ve selected the following swimwear brands based on style and sustainable features.
Their story began six-years ago on an exotic beach in Mexico. Paper London had just launched their full swimwear range and wanted to shoot a tide-turning look book in an exotic location. Returning to the same beach, where their creative director Kelly had visited 10 years prior, they were horrified to see the sight that was once paradise.
What was once a blinding white beach, was now grey, littered and looking miserable. The ocean was red and thick with seaweed, the locals spoke of their growing concerns for their home. Climate change and mass pollution had devastating effects on this beach and they were SHOOK- stomach's churning, eyes watering, the lot.
Since then, their collective mission is "to be the change that you wish to see in the world". They are driven to become a better friend to the environment, and focus on quality and process, over quality and speed. They invest in responsible manufacturing and take time to source high-quality, sustainable fabrics that will look after not only your skin but our home, Planet Earth. Paper London drive to make timeless, versatile wardrobe staples, built to outlast the ever-changing trends, this is why they are number 1 on our sustainable swimwear picks.
Hunza G is a British designed and produced sustainable swimwear label. It's signature, unique crinkle-stretch fabrication and high-cut leggy designs are what makes Hunza swimwear not only fashionable, but comfortable and flattering at the same time, a hard to come by combo nowadays! You may also recognise the Hunza dress since it became an iconic piece after Julia Roberts wore it in Pretty Woman. Each Hunza G design, whether it be a slimming swim suit or sexy two piece is designed to last and be treasured for multiple years.
The signature fabric is knit and dyed within the UK, decreasing emissions and helping to promote a stronger fashion production industry. Hunza G aims to bring a punchy, current twist to both new and heritage shapes, whilst reinventing the way we view swimwear today, through an ethical lens.
3. Fisch Swim
It takes nature more than 600 years to break down abandoned, dumped or lost nets unless they are cleaned up and repurposed, so in all Fisch Swim's swimwear they use Econyl®, a 100% regenerated nylon fibre made from ghost fishing nets and other nylon waste. The fabrics used are woven by the world’s premier manufacturers of high-performance fabrics, which ensures a constant attention to detail and an unparalleled quality.
With eco-innovation being the keyword in all that Fisch do, their fabric mill is located just two hours away from the factory that produces their swimwear. This further reduces their carbon footprint and furthers their goal of setting the standard and maintaining a sustainable business model.
Bezzant Swim's aim is to push boundaries, be unique, confident & stand out. Their collections are designed to transform the most flattering & classic swimwear shapes into new edgy looks, made from Brazilian fabrics of the highest quality, they are soft, supportive & 100% sustainable!
Throughout the design and production stages, Bezzant's central focus is on offering swimwear which holds its shape and provides good support, contouring your beautiful body and enabling you to feel sexy on the sand.
Away That Day also use revolutionary fabric that's kinder to the planet, Econyl®, whos fibere supports the removal of marine debris from our ocean and is made from regenerated waste including ocean plastics, nylon scraps, and ghost fishing nets. As well as using sustainable fabrics, they use 100% compostable mailing bags, they also package each swimsuit into a 100% organic cotton duster bag that you can use (and reuse) wherever you go.
All of their paper, swing tags and labels are made from recycled materials and ordered from trusted suppliers that support global reforestation, and they request certification throughout their entire supply chain to ensure this.
As of 2021, Away That Day proudly announced that all of their garments are now made in the UK, where every piece is lovingly and ethically made by a small manufacturer in the heart of London, and their hard working and like minded team, who have a no-waste approach are supported by being paid above minimum wage.
Bold Swim produce small curated collections, only once a year, and if they have any left over materials from prior collections, it is used in their future designs. Their capsules and limited pieces are made from Amni Soul Eco®, which is a polyamide yarn with enhanced biodegradability. Comparing Bold to fast fashion, this means that their pieces would biodegrade In around 5 years when disposed of in landfills, in comparison to more than 50 years for synthetics in general.
If Bold do happen to have any usable unused materials, they are sure to recycle and donate to local artisans to create textiles for their own businesses, creating a shared economy.
They also use a virtual fitting room partner, Style Me, which allows them to make smarter decisions around producing the correct size, and number based on the fitting data collected. For 2021 alone they further decreased our production based on 2019 and 2020 sales and try ons.
Vitamin A are always learning how to be more sustainable in both products + practice. In 2020, they partnered with a “green team,” to audit their materials and supply chain over the last 10 years. The results? A few sexy stats they can get behind, which you can find behind each of their products.
Before Vitamin A, Amahlia worked on a design project with Patagonia founder and environmentalist Yvon Chouinard, whose company’s use of recycled plastic bottles in their technical fabrics inspired her to attempt something similar in the swimwear space.
However, when Amahlia began to research the options, she was told by fabric suppliers that there was “no market” for swimwear made from recycled fibers — so she decided to design the fabric herself, working with the top mills in Italy, Canada and California. Since then, the company has incorporated several more sustainable high-performance fabrics along with eco-conscious textiles like organic cotton, linen, recycled cotton.
Vitamin A are as vigilant about their packaging as they are about the garments themselves. They researched and sourced the most sustainable materials they could find and never use more than needed, especially when shipping.
Kekaaii is a project that consists in the creation of bikinis with recycable materials, in this case with plastic that is taken out of the oceans. It is a different concept that also alerts to the care we should have with our planet.
It all started when Inês, while helping her grandmother in the sewing studio, started to create some bikinis for her own use. From then on, requests started from friends who liked and also wanted to buy. The demand became such that, alone, Inês was no longer able to fulfil all requests. It was then that, together with Diogo, they decided to go in search of something bigger. When thinking about the project, they both decided that they didn't want to be just another swimwear brand, but rather a brand that defended a value, sustainability.
Their main priority is that the fabrics used to manufacture Kekaaii bikinis is partially made with plastics taken from the oceans. Curiosity: Did you know that 640 tons of fishing nets are abandoned at the bottom of the ocean? Thank goodness Kekaaii can turn these into flattering and sustainable swimwear!
At The Beach Brand are consciously making decisions to minimise their footprint on the environment right from the start of the design phase all the way through to the final product. Creation through ethical practices, together with sustainable fabrics and elegant design, are those aspects that they consider non-negotiable when designing each garment, and undoubtedly constituting the heart and values of the brand.
All of their garments are made out of the highest sustainable material, and their fabrics also have the OEKO-TEX® STANDARD 100 certificate, which guarantees that they have been tested with hazardous substances, and that they have been produced responsibly in local workshops.
This brand is partly inspired by Greek Mythology. Every design is named after a Greek Goddess that represents a certain energy. Aya believe that it’s important for all the women out there to feel like a Goddess and be treated like one… But especially treats herself like one.
Their designs are created for every female body, and besides from looking fantastic, Aya Label wants to be part of the environmental changes. Aya understands that people all over the world are over using plastic which causes pollution of our environment, coming from rubbish, fishing nets that are discarded, washing synthetic clothing and even by just brushing our own teeth.
All these daily actions result that in the near future there will be more plastic than fish in our oceans, so their designs are made of 78% recycled old fishing nets. They are always looking for new recycled and sustainable fabrics to work with and they also donate a percentage of their profits towards environmental organisations that protect the oceans.
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