Fashion brands with an eco conscience are embracing a waste-not, want-not philosophy, says Robert Johnston...
From the chemicals found in dyes to the fertilisers employed to grow raw materials that contribute to the run-off that damages marine ecosystems to the wide use of plastics, fashion can be a dirty business. But it is beginning to clean up its act, with a growing number of brands adopting ocean-friendly measures: upcycling garments, opting for fabrics made from recycled waste and dramatically cutting down their environmental impact at the production stage (from monitoring water usage to reducing transport to minimise carbon footprints). All without compromising on style, of course.
Outdoor specialist Finisterre is passionate about sustainability – and eliminating fluorocarbons from its range. The insulation in this jacket is 100 per cent recycled.
Nimbus waterproof jacket, £180, finisterre.com
A pioneer in the field, G-Star’s denim strives to be as sustainable as possible. The jeans are 98 per cent recyclable and made with pure organic cotton using 70 per cent fewer chemicals with no salts – even the buttons have been produced without toxic chemicals.
Denim jacket, £145, g-star.com
Stella McCartney has long been committed to avoiding using animal products. She has also vowed to use recycled ocean waste wherever possible.
Shirt, £260, stellamccartney.com
Sustainability was at the heart of Outerknown from the beginning – as well as a commitment to fair trade and supporting ocean conservation charities. This hemp and organic cotton top is destined to be your favourite sweatshirt for all the right reasons.
Sweatshirt, £66, outerknown.com
Brother and sister team Marcos and Paz Mafia were passionate about nautical sports in their native Buenos Aires and got the idea of recycling old sails into bags. The duo are about to open their first shop in London.
Sandbag tote, $98, mafiabags.com
This no-nonsense brand only uses organic materials and has cut out what it describes as “the silly stuff” such as water-polluting dyes. This organic cotton mix hoodie are perfect for slouching around in with a clear conscience.
Hoodie, £59, howies.co.uk
Environmentalist David de Rothschild sailed across the Pacific in a boat made from plastic bottles to publicise the extent of the Pacific Garbage Patch. Now shoe brand Veja is making trainers from recycled plastic bottles – as cool as they are clever.
Vegan trainers, €80, veja-store.com
Since 1971, swimwear brand Vilebrequin has helped make the oceans more stylish and now it is doing its bit to protect them. For every pair of limited edition swim shorts that are sold, it will make a donation to sea turtle protection charity Te Mana O Te Moana.
Swimshorts, £175, vilebrequin.com