• Fashion

Game, sweat, match; ethical and sustainable activewear you’ll love

Water bottles into leggings? This is activewear reinvented

It’s a wardrobe staple for many of us, even when we aren’t at the gym, but activewear is also synonymous with synthetic materials. The good news is you don’t have to sacrifice your sweats just yet because a number of brands are now looking to organic cotton as well as recycled nylon and polyester to create workout gear without the worry.

So whether it’s yoga, HIIT or Pilates, here are some of the best sustainably made and ethically produced activewear brands around.

Spell Active 

We’ve loved their whimsical and ethically produced designs for as long as we can remember and now the Spell ladies are adding activewear to their already impressive repertoire. Spell Active is constructed using recycled polyester and has just two designs in its range; a crop top and ⅞ pant in its Wild Things leopard print and floral Folk Town. Much has already sold out, so watch this space!

Team Timbuktu 

Team Timbuktu found its feet via a successful crowdfunding campaign and has gone from strength-to-strength since. Sustainably made using recycled fabrics and ditching the plastic packaging, we love their print sweat-wicking leggings made from recycled water bottles as well as their technical jackets made from recycled plastic. 

First Base

Bondi-born, this slick brand takes no prisoners in the gym, on the court or in the yoga studio. Ethically produced, founder Alison Cotton is committed to transparency about its manufacturing as well as the company’s sustainable practices. Activewear is made from 78 per cent recycled materials and cotton is GOTS certified. They also use recycled packaging and support the Plant-A-Tree program in collaboration with Carbon Neutral Pty Ltd. We’d call that a win-win.

Outdoor Voices 

If you’re familiar with the hashtag #doingthings chances are you’ll already be a fan of Outdoor Voices. But this Texan-born brand is so much more than social media hype and cool leggings, it’s also dedicated to doing better like using Poly Rec – their recycled polyester fabric made from post-consumer water bottles – as well as using ethically sourced merino wool and dedicating theSeamless collection to minimising waste. They also adhere to strict safety and social responsibility when it comes to manufacturing, plus they are working on reducing water use and offsetting their emissions.  

Bhumi Organic Cotton

Fairtrade and GOTS certified, it also uses non-toxic dyes in the production of its yoga and activewear. As well as the usual suspects to guide you through your downward dog, it also boasts joggers, tops and cardis to ensure you get to class in style. Rest easy knowing your package will arrive in recycled, non-toxic packaging.

Salt Gypsy

Inspired by the ocean, these leggings founded by surfer Danielle Clayton, are made from ECONYL aka salvaged plastic, ghost fishing nets and carpet and textile offcuts. They can be worn surfing, on soft sand runs or in the yoga studio and boast a sun protection factor of SPF 50+. Mix and match with their cute cropped rashies.


Patagonia was putting sustainability at its very core before sustainable fashion was even a concept. Recycled polyester and organic cotton makes up the majority of their clothing, and they also donate 1 per cent of sales to grassroots environmental groups. Their activewear and jackets make hitting the pavement or a hike through the mountains a breeze.

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