Why sustainable underwear is our new normal
Shopping for sustainable undies just got a little easier
When Bianca Robortaccio and her business partner Sophie Hopkins dreamt up BITS, their one-stop shop for all things intimate, it was out of a desire to make shopping for bras and undies inclusive and fun. Their vision was to create a place they would want to be part of, a platform showcasing all the innovative intimates brands that catered to all bodies, demographics and life stages. But what they didn’t expect was an overwhelming desire of their customers to shop with sustainability in mind.
“We knew there was strong interest in sustainability, I mean who isn’t trying to reduce their impact and make little changes to their daily habits,’’ Bianca says.
“But we didn’t know how deeply passionate people are. It really does seem like it’s just the new baseline.”
The pair now prioritise sourcing innovative brands with a focus on organic textiles and sustainability practices, all mailers are compostable and the nature of their online only retail stores means a small carbon footprint.
Bianca and Sophie met as co-workers in 2008 at beauty retailer, MECCA and it was over lunch mid-COVID that the pair began ruminating on the idea for a destination for intimates.
“Sophie and I were chatting about our very different boobs (I’m an E cup and Sophie has a little bust) and how, despite our differences, we both found it difficult and pretty uninspiring shopping for bras,’’ Bianca recalls.
Rather than a depressing and time consuming experience, Bianca and Sophie wanted an intimate shopping experience to be empowering and uplifting.
“We want to turn something that has been a bit taboo on its head, really celebrating it and bringing it into everyday conversations at home, at the office (you know those times that you swing around the chair to show your office-pal your new online shopping delivery), and amongst friends at Saturday arvo BBQs,’’ says Bianca.
“It’s about normalising and embracing our intimate bits.”
Launching an e-commerce platform in the midst of a global pandemic might not have been the ideal scenario, however what Bianca and Sophie were able to identify was a seismic shift in a desire to shop locally and sustainably, even when it comes to underwear.
“Given such a momentous and life-changing event (COVID) that we all experienced in 2020, there has been a noticeable shift to locally made brands, local production and local business,’’ Bianca says.
“Whilst that doesn’t necessarily mean people have shifted to entirely sustainable brands, they have shifted their mindset to thinking more consciously about their consumption and I think that is a pretty amazing step.”
BIANCA’S SUSTAINABLE INTIMATE PICKS
“It’s pretty special actually, it feels like a comfy crop with added gravity-defying support and it comes in loads of sizes. Lis Harvey, who is the founder, creates all of her ranges with a focus on ethical production and sustainable fibres like Lenzing Modal (produced using Beechwood from sustainable forestry plantations), organic cotton (certified by GOTS, The Global Organic Textile Standard) and plant-based dyes.”
One of my latest obsessions is the new Katie Rib Boxer shorts – heavenly soft in the GOTS certified organic cotton.
The best overnight period protection, super comfy to wear to bed just with a baggy tee. With a focus on sustainable period care, Scarlet originally launched with a period cup which is a bestseller.
They are super soft and 100 per cent biodegradable. At the moment I wear these basically every day.
When I’m feeling like something higher waisted then go for my Lela Mid Rise Calla undies. I love that Lela is made locally in Sydney.