The 12 best ocean-friendly swimwear brands
Your sustainable summer sorted
Summer is on the horizon and if you’re looking for a new pair of swimmers to hit the beach in there’s so many now on offer that aren’t just stylish, they’re also keeping plastic out of our oceans too. From regenerated fibres and designs made from offcuts to brands that support environmental causes, here are our favourite sustainable swimwear brands making a difference.
We’re excited by the fact a high-street brand is taking sustainability seriously. Country Road has added sustainable swimwear to its stable of ethically produced clothing. Made from recycled nylon sourced from fishing nets and factory off-cuts, the result is beautiful pieces that you’ll wear time and time again.
Reversible and multi-functional, you’ll never tire of your Baiia swimwear, simply because there’s so many ways you can wear it. We love that it’s inclusive – and flattering – for all shapes with sizes starting from Australian size 6 through to 22. What’s more, it’s ethically produced from recycled and Oeko-Tex certified fabrics. We love their vintage tropical and Australiana prints. The versatile signature wrapsuits can be worn up to three different ways while bikini tops and bottoms can be mixed and matched.
Palm offers elevated designs with the environment in mind. They have recently introduced a made-to-order model, so your swimsuit will only be created once you’ve paid for what’s in your cart. With added UV and chlorine protection, it means unlike your regular swimmers, they’ll also go the distance.
New to the annual list, Liandra Swim’s manifesto is, “creating new ways to connect with culture”. Their swimsuits are designed to hero Aboriginal Australian Culture and feature premium Econyl fabric. They sell tops and bottoms as separates, design each range with a story and quite frankly they’re the swimmers we’ll be wearing this summer.
If you’re the kind of person that gets bored with your swimmers then Le Buns is the brand for you. Its Versatile collection can be worn five different ways, so you’ll never get tired of your choice. The family owned business creates their pieces from regenerated nylon and we also love their organic cotton intimates
This chic boutique swim label is made from recycled nylon – think fabric made from recycled ocean waste such as old fishing nets, carpet and fabric waste. Mix and match tops and bottoms for the perfect fit. Or opt for one of their super flattering one-pieces.
Monte & Lou
Founded by friends, Kay Howitt and and Lynne Tramonte who met while working with iconic ‘80s swim designer Brian Rochford, Monte & Lou has serious design credentials. Their latest collection, Off the Grid transitioned the brand to being 100 per cent sustainable (in COVID-19 lockdown, no less) where the duo scrapped their entire range of fabrics and replaced it with Global Recycled Standard certified nylon. Plus, you’ll also get your shopping in a compostable mailer.
Shapes in the Sand
Hand made in limited numbers, each season Shapes in the Sand donates to environmental causes. This year, Koala Ark gets a shout out with the brand donating $10 for every swimsuit from the Blossom collection sold. They’ve recently added bio-based yarn, Evo (made from castor bean oil) to their fabrication mix and it has also designed a soluble hygiene liner made from wood pulp and non-toxic ink to replace the thick plastic liners found in conventional swimwear.
Spell and the Gypsy Collective
Byron born and bred Spell needs no introduction, but what you might not know is their swimwear is also crafted with sustainability in mind. Its boho style bikinis and one-pieces – as well as its activewear range – are made from 100 per cent regenerated nylon that comes from sources like fishing nets. So not only do you get a cool cossie, you’re also helping to reduce landfill.
Sustainably made in Melbourne using Econyl, and water-based non-toxic ink, Elle Evans not only creates great pieces for women but teens and kids too. One dollar from each sale also goes to The Healthy Sea initiative
Amahlia Stevens took her experience working with Patagonia and applied it to her own swim brand creating a range of sustainable fabrics optimised for swimwear. There are three fabric types – one made from nylon scraps, one from discarded plastic water bottles and the third (and one we love the most) is a plant based material made from the castor bean plant. Cool, right? We love the brands classic designs and options for a full coverage bikini bottom.
AUGUSTE THE LABEL
With its whimsical prints and transparent ethos there is a lot to love about Auguste the Label. Small runs, responsibly sourced natural fibres and a vision of treading lightly, this is a brand to love. They are also a member of 1% for the Planet, because sometimes actions do speak the loudest.