Creative Edge Consultants

26 Sustainable Clothing Brands Making Garments for Good (2023)


The fashion industry has more than a few dirty secrets. 

According to a UN report, producing a single pair of jeans requires 2,000 gallons of water, and a garbage-truck-sized pile of textile waste is hitting landfills every second. Fast fashion—trendy clothing produced cheaply—is a major culprit, often contributing not only to environmental damage but also to terrible labor practices. 

With consumers waking up to these sobering stats, many are now demanding brands do better—and they’re making those demands with their dollars. Consumers now seek out brands with clear sustainability missions and make purchase decisions accordingly. For clothing brands, sustainable practices are no longer a nice-to-have.

Ahead, meet 26 sustainable clothing brands taking responsibility through fair labor practices, using sustainable materials, and minimizing impact to meet customer expectations

What does it mean to be a sustainable clothing brand?

Generally, being considered a sustainable business means that care for humans, animals, and the environment are considered at every stage of the supply chain, from how materials are sourced to what happens at the end of a product’s lifecycle. This includes actions like ethical sourcing, safe working conditions, water conservation efforts, offsetting impact, and giving back

A person cropped at the torso wears green clothing

The best sustainable brands are those that are transparent about their business practices. Consumers are now seeking out a sustainability statement that includes where and how clothing is made. Certifications like B Corporation (or B Corp), Fair Trade Certified, and Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) instill trust in consumers who can be confident that claims are vetted by a trusted third party.

26 sustainable clothing brands making an impact

If you’re a consumer looking for sustainable fashion, or you’re a clothing brand owner aspiring to implement sustainable business practices, this list is for you. 

These best-in-class examples of sustainable fashion brands include eco-friendly menswear, vegan footwear, vintage fashion, recycled swimwear, and everything in between. They’re been deemed sustainable through a number of actions, from reducing carbon emissions to using renewable materials to working with ethical factories.

1. Beaumont Organic

Products: Women’s apparel, babies, pets
Sustainable fashion category: Ethical production
Size range: XS to L

A woman wearing a yellow dress tastes fruit picked from a tree

Beaumont Organic partners with trusted factories in Portugal and the UK sharing Beaumont’s belief that workers should be paid fairly and work reasonable hours. And most of the brand’s pieces are made using GOTS-certified organic cotton.

2. Thesus

Products: Unisex footwear
Sustainable fashion category: Sustainable materials, living wage, carbon neutral
Size range: Up to EU size 46

A person ties a pair of hiking boots

Thesus is a sustainable footwear brand using recycled materials to produce boots and shoes without leather or cruelty. The brand currently offers carbon-neutral shipping and is working toward becoming a Climate Neutral Certified company. Employees at Thesus and its partner facilities all make a living wage.

3. Narah Soleil

Products: Swimwear
Sustainable fashion category: Eco-friendly materials
Size range: XS to XL

A woman floats on her back in a swimming pool

Narah Soleigh’s swimsuits are made with fabric scraps, industrial plastic, and abandoned fishing nets woven into a recycled nylon and sewn in solar-powered factories. The company also produces other clothing made from organic cotton. Narah Soliel is an official member of Rainforest Trust, a global conservation charity. Partial profits support the organization’s Conservation Action Fund.

4. Pact

Products: Apparel for the whole family, including maternity wear
Sustainable fashion category: Organic materials, recycling program
Size range: XS to XXL (plus maternity sizes)

Close up of a man's hand in the pocket of his peach colored pants

Pact’s organic cotton is GOTS certified (using 81% less water and 62% less energy than conventional cotton) and dyed with chemical-free dyes in its fair trade factories. The brand also has a clothing donation program, letting customers use Pact shipping materials to send back gently used clothing for distribution to nonprofits. 

5. Organic Basics

Products: Unisex fashion basics
Sustainable fashion category: Organic materials, ethical production, low-impact shipping
Size range: XXS to XXL (women’s)

Three women wearing purple yoga clothing stand front to back

Organic Basics uses not only organic cotton in its clothing basics but other sustainable fabrics, like Lyocell and recycled wool. The brand tracks its impact across every stage of the supply chain, publishing data on its website for transparency. Across manufacturing and shipping, Organic Basics continually looks for ways to minimize its footprint from safe dyes to biodegradable and recycled packaging.

6. MoEa

Products: Sneakers
Sustainable fashion category: Vegan, cruelty free
Size range: Up to EU shoe size 46

A pair of white cactus leather sneakers are arranged with cactus plants

MoEa produces sneakers with “leather” made from corn, pineapple, cactus, and more. For each type of leather alternative, MoEa partners with a producer like Piñatex, a certified B Corp company endorsed by PETA. The company’s pineapple leather saves 264 tonnes of CO2 from entering the atmosphere, as it diverts leaves that would normally be burned into a new product.

7. Vege Threads

Products: Women’s apparel and swim
Sustainable fashion category: Fair working conditions, social responsibility
Size range: Some styles up to 3XL

Two women wear matching light blue cotton outfits

Vege Threads is an Ethical Clothing Australia–accredited brand. To gain accreditation, businesses need to meet ECA’s standards for the treatment and fair pay of garment workers. The brand is also a 1% for the Planet member, donating a portion of profits to non-profit organizations. Vege Threads clothing is made with GOTS-certified organic cotton and other sustainable materials.

8. Good Guys Don’t Wear Leather

Products: Footwear
Sustainable fashion category: Vegan, cruelty free
Size range: Up to EU shoe size 47

Two clog-style boots in vegan leather  

Good Guys Don’t Wear Leather is an Italian-made footwear brand that uses a leather alternative derived from apple waste from the fruit juice industry. The brand produces classic styles like Chelsea boots, cowboy boots, and Birkenstock-style sandals, all using plant-based components.

9. Duffle&Co

Products: Bags and accessories
Sustainable fashion category: Vegan materials
Size range: One size

A black duffel bag

Duffle&Co uses a mix of pineapple leather and organic cotton to create its leatherlike handbag line. These high end duffles, bags, and backpacks are also made to last. The company’s Repair Rewear program will repair any damages to its products in the first year to extend their life.

10. Public Myth

Products: Activewear for men and women
Sustainable fashion category: Locally made, living wage
Size range: Some styles up to XL (women’s)

Organic cotton tank tops hang on a clothing rack

Public Myth produces its activewear in a local factory in Vancouver, Canada. This ensures the company can closely monitor working conditions and ensure staff are paid and treated fairly. Public Myth also uses eco-friendly fabrics and natural materials while committing to low-waste production.

11. Psychic Outlaw

Products: Unisex apparel and accessories
Sustainable fashion category: Upcycling
Size range: Ready-to-wear up to 3XL, custom can be made any size

A woman pets a llama over a fence

Psychic Outlaw makes handcrafted and bespoke pieces like bomber jackets and midi-skirts using vintage quilts, tablecloths, and bandanas. Reusing materials means the brand is diverting unusable pieces from the landfill, reducing the need for virgin materials, and giving a vintage artifact a second life.

12. Pantee

Products: Underwear and basics
Sustainable fashion category: Upcycled fabrics
Size range: XS to 3XL

A woman models a tight white cotton turtleneck top

Pantee is another sustainable brand using recycled fabrics. The undergarment brand produces its collections using deadstock fabrics (overproduction waste from the fashion industry). The brand launched by making products from deadstock t-shirts before scaling to use deadstock fabric rolls, saving these from possible incineration.

13. Gandy’s International

Products: Men’s and women’s apparel, bags
Sustainable fashion category: Social impact
Size range: Some styles up to XXL

A man in a beanie cap pets a shaggy dog

Gandy’s International founders Rob and Paul Forkan turned their own grief into a mission to help others. Their sustainable clothing brand was created in tandem with a foundation that provides meals and school buildings to children in communities of need.

14. Alivia

Products: Sleepwear and women’s apparel
Sustainable fashion category: Social change, local production
Size range: Some styles up to XXL

A woman in a bomber jacket leans over a fence

Alivia is committed to ethical production, manufacturing much of its collection locally. It also gives back to the communities that inspired the brand, partnering with organizations that provide meaningful employment to those with autism. Each of Alivia’s unique prints is designed by a person with developmental disabilities. 

15. Londre Bodywear

Products: Swimwear and resort wear 
Sustainable fashion category: Recycling program
Size range: Up to 4XL

A model wears a white two-piece swimsuit

Londre Bodywear offers a recycling program that accepts old swimsuits (shipping paid by the brand) to recycle into new goods. The items are also made in small batches using recycled water bottles. This method minimizes water use compared to conventional swimsuit production method. 

16. Seek Collective

Products: Men’s and women’s clothing, home goods
Sustainable fashion category: Ethical production, fair practices, safe dyes
Size range: Some styles up to 4XL

A woman models a sustainable fashion outfit on a rocky terrain

Seek Collective recognizes that garment dyeing can be a harmful process, both for workers and the environment. That’s why it works with only safe and natural dyes derived from sources like vegetables, minerals, and flowers. Seek also believes in offering a living wage and providing a good working environment. The brand’s hang tags are compostable and embedded with basil seeds, ready to plant in the garden.


Products: Unisex basics
Sustainable fashion category: Water conservation, social impact
Size range: XS to XL

Three people model cotton clothing in a recycling facility

TOBEFRANK is committed to transparency in its water consumption and in taking actions to both reduce it and to support projects and charities that bring clean drinking water to communities in need. The brand is consistently looking for new ways to produce clothing sustainably, including using food waste dyes and low-energy cold dying techniques. TOBE FRANK collaborates with organizations to support better conditions for fashion industry workers.

18. No Nasties

Products: Women’s and men’s apparel
Sustainable fashion category: Organic materials, environmental impact
Size range: Some styles up to XXL

A person models a sustainably made sweater

No Nasties is a sustainable brand that invests in carbon-offsetting projects like solar and wind power to help neutralize the brand’s footprint. Its For the Planet page shares a transparent snapshot of the company’s impact, including stats on water savings and trees planted. No Nasties produces clothing made from certified organic materials like organic cotton.

19. Adored Vintage

Products: Women’s apparel and accessories
Sustainable fashion category: Vintage clothing, social impact
Size range: Some styles up to 3XL

A woman stands in a doorway modelling a vintage dress

Adored Vintage focuses on a romantic aesthetic, with a creamy color palette and lots of florals and lace. Vintage pieces are mixed with new, and any flawed or damaged returns are sold at a discount, with profits supporting charity.

🍃Read more: Hear from several other founders of vintage fashion brands and learn how to start your own business selling vintage clothing online

20. Swedish Stockings

Products: Hosiery
Sustainable fashion category: Recycled materials, recycling program
Size range: Some styles up to XL

Feet and legs model sheer tights and high heel pumps

Swedish Stockings produces its pantyhose from post-consumer nylon waste. The brand also offers a recycling program, partnering with other companies to turn customers’ old stockings into industrial tanks and fiberglass furniture. 

21. The Fitzroy

Products: Dresses for special occasions
Sustainable fashion category: Rental business
Size range: Up to size 20 

A woman poses in a floral sundress

The Fitzroy is a Toronto boutique offering short-term rentals of designer going-out dresses for well below the price of purchase. This business model eliminates the number of new garments purchased for one-time wear, tackling overconsumption.

22. Darn Tough

Products: Hosiery
Sustainable fashion category: Built to last
Size range: Up to men’s US shoe size 17, women’s US shoe size 19

 Feet wearing running shoes and Darn Tough brand socks

Darn Tough’s promise is built into its brand name. The company tackles sustainability by ensuring that less textile is hitting the landfill by producing high-quality socks and guaranteeing them for life.

23. Outerknown 

Products: Men’s and women’s clothing
Sustainable fashion category: Ethical production, fair trade, recycling program
Size range: Some styles up to XXL (women’s)

Four plaid mens shirts are arranged on a flat surface

Outerknown has had a commitment to fair labor practices and the welfare of its workers from day one, with oversight from Fair Trade USA. The company uses materials like organic cotton and recycled or regenerated materials. Outerknown also offers a pre-owned marketplace called Outerworn, allowing its customers to buy and sell gently used clothing, keeping it out of the landfill. 

24. Encircled

Products: Women’s apparel
Sustainable fashion category: Reducing consumption, local manufacturing
Size range: Some styles up to XXL

A woman models a light purple top

Encircled is a B Corp certified brand that focuses on “capsule wardrobes” and pieces that can be worn in multiple ways—meaning you need fewer pieces in your closet. All factory scrap is upcycled into smaller accessories to reduce waste, and the brand is committed to safe conditions and fair wages for its workers. 

25. Wuxly

Products: Outerwear (including adaptive parkas)
Sustainable fashion category: Vegan, cruelty free, social impact
Size range: Some women’s styles up to XXL, men’s styles up to 3XL

A woman models cruelty free outerwear in a laundromat

Wuxly is an animal-free outerwear brand founded by a pro-football player and made for Canadian winters. The company has achieved certification through B Corp, an organization that measures companies’ social and environmental impact. Wuxly also runs a trade-up program, offering a $100 credit to customers who donate their old parkas. Donated garments are redistributed to those in need through charity partners.

26. Jackalo

Products: Kids’ apparel
Sustainable fashion category: Recycling program
Size range: Up to kids’ size 14

A kid in sunglasses and holding a skateboard models an outfit

Jackalo is a kidswear brand with a commitment to creating long-lasting pieces. It will even take back gently used outgrown items through a trade-up program that resells them and gives the original customer a discount on future purchases.

Types of sustainable fashion brands

Sustainability can be achieved across many areas of a business, impacting everything from environmental footprint to factory working conditions. 

Low-impact production

  • Carbon neutral or climate neutral clothing brands. To become carbon neutral, a company must remove as much carbon from the atmosphere as it produces. To do so, it needs to have a detailed accounting of it carbon footprint and take appropriate action to reverse it.
  • Clothing brands with sustainability certifications. Sustainability certifications are a signal to customers that they’re not being duped by greenwashing. Most of the reputable certifications are managed by bodies that have third-party oversight of brands that hold them. And some, like B Corp, Fair Trade, and 1% for the Planet are widely recognized by the public as a symbol of authenticity.
  • Fashion brands committed to safe production processes. There is a human cost to dirty and unethical production practices. Some corporations have used loopholes to bypass environmental and disposal laws to manufacture more cheaply. This has resulted in numerous examples of contaminating the water supply of entire communities, or harming wildlife habitats. 

Reduce, reuse, recycle

  • Clothing exchange and recycling programs. Fashion brands that are truly end-to-end sustainable are thinking beyond the wearable life of their products. Some offer items that can biodegrade and others, like these brands, incentivize the return of worn items so they can be resold, reused, or recycled into new items.
  • Clothing rental brands. Another sustainable practice is helping to eliminate overproduction. Buying a dress for a single occasion is wasteful, and high-end pieces often are price-inaccessible. Fashion rental brands have popped up in Rent The Runway’s wake, renting the same dress to multiple consumers.
  • Sustainable fashion brands that use recycled materials. Much innovation has been poured into the problem of waste. As an island of plastic swells in the Pacific Ocean, we can no longer ignore the impacts of making more. Now, recycled plastic bottles and used fishing nets are being spun into new fabrics, diverting the original product from the landfill and into something usable again.
  • Fashion brands built for a lifetime of wear. Fast fashion’s biggest failure is arguably how disposable its output is. Made cheaply, these pieces deteriorate quickly and necessitate more buying. One solution to this is producing (and buying) clothing meant to last—the upfront cost is higher, but is comparable to buying multiple fast fashion versions over time. 
  • Vintage and secondhand clothing brands. Similar to upcycled clothing brands, vintage businesses take the old and make it new again. Vintage clothing is inherently sustainable because it requires no new resources and doesn’t contribute to the production waste or impact typical of new clothing manufacturers.

A person holds a green sneaker in front of a green background

Sustainable materials

  • Upcycled apparel brands. What’s even better than producing sustainable fabrics? Using materials that already exist and otherwise may have gone to the landfill. These clever brands have reworked pieces that normally would be considered garbage to create something new. 
  • Leather alternative and cruelty-free clothing brands. Animal agriculture is a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, and the chemical-laden process of curing and tanning leather uses a massive amount of energy, water, and resources. Consumers have been delivered a confusing amount of information, with leather proponents arguing that plastic-based alternatives are equally damaging. Much R&D in the past few years, however, has revealed a happy medium: “leather” made from plants. Bolt Threads was an early innovator in mushroom leather, partnering with brands like Stella McCartney.
  • Clothing brands that use organic materials. Along with commitments to ethical labor, these brands are making a positive impact by using cotton that has been produced without pesticides and synthetic fertilizers—both of which can contaminate water sources and do harm to the people and wildlife that depend on them. 

Social responsibility

  • Brands that give back. Despite best efforts, most companies will contribute to some amount of negative impact on the planet, whether directly through material consumption or indirectly through shipping emissions. Offsetting is a way brands can own up to their impact. Many do so through contributing to carbon removal projects or giving back.
  • Ethical clothing brands. These sustainable brands have a commitment to ethics all the way down the supply chain. They care about fair wages, local production, ethical sourcing of raw materials, and safe working conditions.

Sustainability at every stage of the supply chain

A woman with bangs sniffs a pink flowerWhen you’re building a clothing brand, sustainable and ethical practices should be baked into your mission and business practices from the get-go. It’s no longer an option—it’s what customers demand. 

Established businesses can find inspiration from this list to make impactful changes, whether it’s sourcing better materials, giving back, or improving working conditions. Even small steps in the right direction can lighten your footprint—and meet customers where they are.

Sustainable fashion industry FAQ

What is slow fashion?

Think about what defines fast fashion: high output, speedy production, low-cost materials. Slow fashion takes the opposite approach, not sacrificing care for humans and the environment for the sake of speed and cost cutting. It approaches fashion from the perspective of doing no harm and leaving no footprint—and sometimes that takes longer. Top slow fashion brands include Organic Basics and Girlfriend Collective.

What is greenwashing?

Greenwashing is the practice of brands and companies claiming to be more environmentally conscious than they are. It refers to a disconnect between the promises a company makes and its actions. Consumers are becoming increasingly savvy and greenwashing can erode consumer trust.

How can fashion brands be more sustainable?

There are a number of ways fashion brands can run as a more sustainable business. Consider impact at every stage in the supply chain, from sourcing to shipping. Start small to get there by doing an audit of your business practices and identifying the biggest areas for improvement. Simply switching to recycled packaging, using regenerative materials, or donating proceeds to offsetting projects is a step in the right direction.

How do you start a sustainable clothing business?

Starting any clothing business requires many steps, from identifying your niche and audience and determining business model (handmade, factory produced, resales) to developing your brand and setting up your online store. Sustainability should be top of mind in the decision making at each stage. Ask questions like: Do the factories you work with treat workers fairly? Is your fabric sustainable? How will you ensure transparency?


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