The fashion industry is home to many innovations in sustainability, swimwear included. More and more brands are embracing recycled materials, eco-friendly packaging, and steps like taking back used swimsuits. This represents a rejection of fast fashion and cheap, low-quality products that are quickly discarded. By caring more about materials, a brand’s supply chain, and the impact on the environment, consumers are transforming the fashion world in a big way. Here are five sustainable swimwear brands to consider:
Created by Tiffany Broadway, this size-inclusive brand embraces sustainability and is a member of 1% for the Planet. This means part of Bold Swim’s revenue goes to environmental causes. Their products are made from Amni Soul Eco®, which is a polyamide yarn. It biodegrades in a landfill in about 5 years, which is great compared to the 50 years it takes synthetics to degrade. It’s best to dispose of Amni Soul Eco products in a landfill because the material is designed to biodegrade quickly in those conditions. Each piece is toxin-free, not tested on animals, and designed with UV protection. Styles include animal prints, tie-dye, tops, bottoms, and more.
Starting in 2021, Bold Swim produces small curated collections once a year. By using a virtual fitting room (Style Me), Bold Swim can ensure everyone gets the size they need, so they don’t need to produce as many swimsuits. Leftovers from older collections are used in limited pieces and future design capsules. When possible, they recycle and donate usable fabrics. All their packaging uses recycled materials and provides 100% carbon neutral and offset shipping.
Founded in 2018 by Josefina A. Theo, a fashion photographer, Casa Raki is the result of years of working in the e-commerce fashion industry and the desire for a sustainable luxury brand. All the materials are chosen carefully with the environment in mind. Materials include recycled nylon or recycled polyester. The brand also uses ECONYL®, which turns waste like industrial plastic and fishing nets into new nylon yarn. Casa Raki’s new Resortwear collection uses 100% GOTS-certified organic linen, which is also Oeko-Tex certified.
In addition to their eco-friendly commitment, Casa Raki partners with an ethical Portuguese factory owned and operated by women. To cut down on waste as much as possible, the brand limits how many swimwear products they make in each collection. Styles include simple, elegant cuts, bright colors, and stripes. Casa Raki also sells ready-to-wear items.
A Swedish brand launched in 1983, Scampi offers retro-inspired swimwear for people who care about sustainability. They partner with Aquafil, the leading manufacturer of ECONYL®, a nylon yarn. With each swimsuit they make, they recycle up to 300 grams of marine litter and other nylon waste. The high-quality swimwear is twice as resistant to chlorine, oils, and sunscreen lotion compared to competitor fabrics!
Products are made in European factories committed to fair working conditions. To ensure this standard, Scampi makes regular factory visits and fosters relationships with employees. To reduce waste, the brand uses only recycled packaging and digital printing. Scampi is also committed to carbon offsetting. An independent third party assesses all the products, so emissions throughout the supply chain are analyzed and reduced. Scampi offsets 120% of the emissions they can’t reduce.
This London-based company uses ECONYL® nylon yarn for their range of four styles, which launched in 2019. ECONYL® is made from nylon recovered from the ocean (like fishing nets) that’s then processed into usable fabric. Boden plans on expanding it across the swimwear line by 2025. Their packaging is sustainable, too, because they use recycled materials. Their catalogs are made from 100% PEFC certified paper. At their warehouse in Leicester, Boden has a zero-to-landfill policy. They recycle more than 500 tonnes of card and paper, and 100 tons of plastic. Their US warehouse has a similar policy.
The swimwear is made in 152 factories in carefully-selected 15 countries. For transparency purposes, a full list is available on their website. Boden is committed to suppliers with the same values as them. What do the suits look like? Expect bold colors and elegant cuts, as well as classic sporty looks.
This 1970s-inspired brand uses EcoLux™, the first premium swim fabric made from recycled nylon fibers. The designer, Amahlia Stevens, worked with mills in Italy, Canada, and California to create this unique material. Other eco-friendly fabrics include organic cotton and linen. All are Oeko-Tex certified. Sustainability is important for every part of the business. Their headquarters and warehouse embrace several tactics for reducing their environmental footprint. The packaging is recycled, recyclable, and biodegradable.
On the production end, Vitamin A works with teams that maintain the highest workplace ethics standards. For products that can’t be made in California – which has the strictest environmental laws in the country – they partner with fair-trade artisans. Vitamin A also donates a portion of its sales to community causes and environmental organizations.