Sunbathe responsibly; apply your SPF and make sure your suit is earth and ocean friendly by looking for sustainable swimwear. Read on for shopping tips, and scroll down for our favorite sustainable styles from bright bikinis to patterned one pieces and monochromatic surf suits.
When shopping for swimwear, sustainability is just as important as cut and color for your next poolside or beachfront debut. The best approach to ensuring your new suit is both ocean and body positive is to research indicators that show a deeper commitment to sustainability within a brand’s DNA. Seek out textiles that don’t use new or finite resources, and a focus on overall impact with attention to shipping, packaging, climate neutrality and ecology partnerships with organizations that conserve, protect and rebuild ecosystems.
Look for swim fabrics made from recycled fibres like REPREVE®, one of the best certified, earth-friendly fibers available. High-quality, recycled polyester yarns are made from 100% recycled materials, including post-consumer plastic bottles, pre-consumer industrial waste or a hybrid of both. Compared to making what’s called virgin fiber, making REPREVE offsets the effects of using new petroleum, emitting fewer greenhouse gases and conserving water and energy in the process.
Econyl® is a regenerated nylon fiber that gives fishnets and other pre and post-consumer nylon waste a new life. It has the exact same functionality as brand new nylon and can be recycled, recreated and reconstituted continuously, taking single-use plastics and preventing them from further damaging our pristine oceans and waterways.
Yulex® is another great option, and is used in place of neoprene by brands like Seea. Made from rubber trees, it replaces neoprene, one of the worst offenders. As a petroleum based product, Neoprene requires non-renewable resources and heavy chemical processing involving butadiene, a petrochemical refined from crude oil. This production chain causes both environmental and human harm, starting with the drilling and transport of oil, and the emission of toxic gasses during manufacturing. Yulex offers the same smooth, strong wet-suit quality and comes without the carcinogens and environmental destruction. Harvested from hevea, or rubber trees, Yulex has a smaller impact and works solely with FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified hevea producers as determined by the Rainforest Alliance. This means that the local hevea farmers commit to stringent social and environmental guidelines for responsible forest management.
Here are our favorite swimsuits from brands that are making a true effort to close the sustainable loop and take care of the beaches and waters they’re suiting us up for, in style.