Up-and-coming activewear companies are putting sustainability first in their business plan, while the more senior competitors are trying to keep up. From using recycled water bottles and fishing nets to a safer dyeing process, this trend is what consumers are pushing for: a sustainable future.
Activewear is typically made from synthetic fibers, which makes it unsustainable across the board — from how it’s manufactured to how it will break down over time, and even the amount of energy it takes to make the fabric.
I know what you’re thinking — what about my cute activewear?! Fortunately, sustainability doesn’t mean you have to give up a cute look. Keep reading for our favorite sustainable activewear brands and product recs!
My Favorite Brand And Why
My top favorite brand to shop would be Girlfriend Collective. Not only are their pieces comfortable, supportive, and super cute, but the brand itself is amazing! Girlfriend Collective is all about transparency, sustainability, and sizing for everyone. I love what they stand for and that they represent everyone throughout all their platforms.
View this post on Instagram
They also have a section on their website talking about their process for creating their clothing and why they make the decisions they do. I love shopping from this brand because I know they are ethical in every aspect of their business, but also because they make high quality activewear that’s affordable while still being stylish. They don’t put out patterns, only solid colors — but in my opinion, this makes each piece fluid for anyone’s wardrobe.
My Favorite Sustainable (And Fashion Forward) Brands & Their Sustainability Pledges
Alo Yoga immediately states that they are eco-friendly and sweatshop-free. With other brands using these sweatshops, it’s refreshing to find a brand that doesn’t rely on these practices. Each sewing facility has an Alo employee looking over the process, and they are WRAP-certified (meaning their facilities follow humane and ethical practices.) When it comes to their eco footprint, all offices and facilities are powered by solar, meaning when the sun is out, they have enough energy to power 100,000 light bulbs. Pretty amazing, right?
Outdoor Voices’ sustainability pledge is “Protecting Our Playground.” Their products are made for long-time use, rather than for short-term use, therefore avoiding landfills. When you do, eventually, need to switch out clothes, they repurpose, repair, and re-circulate their products for future use. The fabrics they use include MegaFleece, made from recycled wool; RecPoly, aka recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET); and CloudKnit, developed with recycled PET. Some of their other goals include eliminating waste and eliminating single-use plastic.
Like I mentioned, Girlfriend Collective has an entire page dedicated to transparency regarding their sustainability practices (love that). All of their packaging is 100% recycled and recyclable, reducing their addition to landfills; their LITE leggings are made from ECONYL recycled fishing nets; and their compressive leggings and bras are made from 25 and 11 recycled post-consumer bottles, respectively. Their facilities are SA8000-certified, meaning their work conditions are top-notch — you won’t find child labor here.
Wolven has partnered with Climate Neutral, meaning they’re dedicated to reducing their greenhouse gas emissions footprint and purchasing carbon credits to offset their carbon footprint; basically, it means your products are carbon-neutral AND the carbon credits support initiatives such as rainforest conservation and landfill methane-capture. On top of this, there are 27 recycled post-consumer bottles in each pair of leggings, lessening their landfill contributions.
Dk Active is extremely supportive of creating sustainable leggings and supporting ethical practices. Based in Australia, their factory meets all Australian standards for ethical clothing manufacturing. When it comes to their fabrics, this is where Dk Active truly shines. Italian Lyrcra is sourced from a supplier which emits 10% less carbon; their regenerated nylon is made from fishing nets, fabric scraps and carpets; and bamboo and organic cotton are biodegradable. Talk about sustainable.
How Do You Know It’s Sustainable?
The easiest way to know if your brand is sustainable or not (and this can go for any brand, not just activewear) is a website called Good On You. It rates a company’s sustainable and ethical practices on a scale. They rate different categories, like planet, people, and animals, and then go into details on why they received the rating they did and even how to improve their rating.
Check Before You Buy
Before you purchase from a brand, look at their website and check their sustainability practices. If they don’t have a page, it’s probably a good indicator that they don’t have the best practices. If they do, read through it to find out the details.
What are your favorite sustainable workout brands? Let us know in the comments!
Want More Sustainable Brands? Read These Articles: