With sun-shining spring in bloom and summer fast approaching, it's officially time to break out those warm-weather clothes that have been hiding away in our closets for months. But it's also time to make sure that those clothes come from brands who are championing our great outdoors.
Trailblazing companies like Patagonia and Eileen Fisher continue to inspire others to improve their supply chain practices, reduce pollution, lower water use, develop new low-impact textiles, and experiment with new technical materials.
The five brands offer high-quality, eco-friendly clothes for reasonable prices:
In 2012, the Adidas brand manufactured a limited collection of 50,000 T-shirts utilizing DryDye technology. DryDye is a polyester fabric-dyeing technique that uses no water, 50 percent fewer chemicals, and 50 percent less energy than the traditional dyeing process. Since its inception, DryDye fabric has been utilized in more and more of Adidas clothes. Four million yards of it were produced by 2014, saving the brand 100 million liters of water.
Sixty-five percent of Alternative Apparel’s garments are made from sustainable materials and aged using the G2 Eco-Wash—a process that uses 60 percent less energy and water than traditional washing. Alternative Apparel is also a certified Green Business, meaning it has been recognized for its commitments to reducing waste, recycling, reusing materials, reducing energy usage, reducing water usage, and wastewater management.
Levi’s Waste<Less collection of products is made of 20 percent post-consumer waste, mostly recycled plastic bottles. Since the collection launched in spring 2013, the brand has used 11.9 million recycled bottles for products such as Levi’s 511 Skinny jeans, Levi’s Trucker jackets, and women’s Levi’s Boyfriend Skinny jeans.
Over 80 percent of People Tree’s clothes are made from organic cotton, and the brand claims that all of its clothes are made using dyes that are certified safe and free of chemical pigments. Thirty-three percent of People Tree’s fabrics are also made using handcrafted, carbon-free production methods.
True to its tagline, "Killer clothes that don’t kill the environment,” Reformation uses sustainable materials in all of its clothing. These include everything from Tencel (a fiber made from recycled wood pulp) to recovered yarn and repurposed vintage clothing.