We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever, but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with these sustainable bamboo socks... Image by Boody #bamboosocks #sustainablejungle
Image by Boody
We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever, but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with these sustainable bamboo socks... Image by Cariloha #bamboosocks #sustainablejungle
Image by Cariloha
We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever, but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with these sustainable bamboo socks... Image by Thought #bamboosocks #sustainablejungle
Image by Thought

Bamboo Socks: 6 Breathable Brands Your Eco-Feet Will Love


What’s better than walking barefoot on soft grass?

Walking in a pair of bamboo socks of course (yes, bamboo is technically a grass).

In the natural world, bamboo goes from seed to shoot to towering stalk in no time, which is why it’s one of the most sustainable fabrics

In the fashion world, it’s growing just as quickly, which is good and bad since the sustainability of bamboo fabric largely depends on how it’s processed. More on that at the toe end of the article.

For better or worse, however, we’re seeing the b-word included in many garments—from ethical leggings to organic bras to socks made from bamboo.

We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever (where do the missing ones go?), but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with the following sustainable bamboo sock brands.

It’s hard to talk about bamboo without talking about Boody. Their organic bamboo and closed-loop processing keep your feet happy and ethical. 

Thought has us thinking about not just bamboo but all the other great materials that can end up in socks along with it, like organic cotton and recycled polyester.

When moonwalking in bamboo athletic socks from Movesgood, you’re supporting a (nearly) carbon neutral slow fashion brand.

*This post contains affiliate links

QUICK LINKS FOR MENS & WOMENS BAMBOO SOCKS


1. BOODY

We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever, but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with these sustainable bamboo socks... Image by Boody #bamboosocks #sustainablejungle
Image by Boody
About Boody

Boody and bamboo go together like socks and ethical shoes

The Aussie-American affordable ethical fashion company has made bamboo their bestie.

You’ll find it in their organic underwear, bras, fair trade pajamas, and sustainable yoga clothes.

The most Boody-ful part?  It’s all organic bamboo—the same material found in their bamboo socks for women and men. Crew, chunky, ankle, sports, sneaker, and hidden socks are aplenty from this lover of bamboo.

Boody’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

Materials: 

The organic certification sets the bar high in the world of bamboo, but Boody also uses a closed-loop process that really makes the standout material even more sustainable.

Instead of polluting waterways with solvents (though theirs are non-toxic), the brand reuses their solvents and water.

Boody’s men’s and women’s bamboo socks are backed with certifications from Ecocert, Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC), and OEKO-TEX.

However, they are not pure bamboo but are blended with small amounts of both polyester / nylon and spandex.  

Supply chain & labor practices: 

Wiggle those toes in a worry-free way knowing that Boody is also WRAP-certified and adheres to manufacturing standards put forth by ISO-9001 (read: no child or forced labor, or harassment). 

Green business practices: 

In addition to using better bamboo manufacturing practices and ISO-14001 environmental compliance, Boody uses recycled or compostable packaging and plant-based ink.

Each pair of socks comes with a sustainability story included in the product description. That way, you know how many resources were saved and emissions avoided thanks to the material beneath your ethical boots.

Community & charitable giving:

For this brand, there are no ifs, ands, or Boody butts when it comes to protecting our planet. In addition to supporting organic farming, they also support various other eco-organizations through 1% for the Planet

Available:  Boody (US) | Boody (AU)

2. THOUGHT

We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever, but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with these sustainable bamboo socks... Image by Thought #bamboosocks #sustainablejungle
Image by Thought
About Thought

Let’s think about why we love Thought

The London-based brand is a big fan of natural fabrics—and turning them into sustainable, organic clothing

Their sustainable stylings are for men and women across all sorts of occasions—from dressing down in eco friendly sweatpants to dressing up in ethical jeans or a fair trade dress

They also have bamboo socks for men and women with a variety just as large, including ankle socks, long socks, patterned socks, plain socks, or the quintessential-to-happiness fluffy socks.

Thought’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

Materials: 

What makes for the best bamboo socks?

Breathability, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial properties. Which is to say all of them, since those are properties of bamboo on the whole!

In addition to all that, we love the socks from Thought because they use sustainable bamboo blended with certified organic cotton and GRS-certified recycled polyester. Note, there is a bit of elastane added for stretch.  

Supply chain & labor practices: 

Thought spends a lot of time pondering their supply chain, and they take steps to ensure that it is as ethical as possible. 

Each manufacturing partner adheres to their Code of Conduct, and as members of the Ethical Trading Initiative and Common Objective, you can be sure that workers’ rights are protected. 

Green business practices: 

Because many of the materials are sourced in China (the world’s largest producer of bamboo), that’s also where their factories are located to keep their supply chain smaller and more sustainable. 

They also have an environmental policy to which all suppliers must adhere. This includes standards about chemicals used in processing, factory discharges, and recommended energy conservation practices. 

Community & charitable giving:

Thought is one of the founders of Common Objective! This organization provides solutions for sustainable fashion and helps businesses make smarter decisions.

Many of our favorite sustainable clothing brands are members.

Thought also regularly donates unsold or returned garments to UK-based charities.

Available: Thought

3. CARILOHA

We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever, but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with these sustainable bamboo socks... Image by Cariloha #bamboosocks #sustainablejungle
Image by Cariloha
About Cariloha

Cariloha was looking for A Comfy Way To Save The World™ and they chose bamboo to help make it happen! 

In addition to luxuriously comfortable bed and bath goods, they sell clothing and accessories, including socks. 

For men and women alike, they offer a range of styles such as no-show, ankle, athletic, trouser, crew, knee-high, and “softy socks”. 

Just a quick peek at the bamboo socks reviews, and you’ll see plenty like the following: “These are the best socks. I’ve had pairs for over 3 years and they show no wear n’ tear.”

Cariloha’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

Materials: 

The socks are made with a blend of bamboo viscose (processed with a GOTS-approved solution in a closed-loop process), organic cotton, nylon, and spandex. 

Supply chain & labor practices: 

Cariloha grows its own bamboo in the Sichuan Province of China and partners with manufacturing facilities in the U.S., China, Mexico, Turkey, and India. 

They do use some Fair Trade factories and plan to increase the number in the future. Until then, we will reach out to find out more about current worker protection policies in place. 

Green business practices: 

The bamboo used in Cariloha products is grown on their own Cariloha Bamboo Farm and doesn’t require fertilizers, pesticides, or any chemicals. It’s just 10 square miles but produces 14,000 tons of bamboo every year!

In 2020, this carbon-neutral business received the Utah BusinessGreen Business Award for Innovation.

Community & charitable giving:

Over the years, Cariloha has supported organizations like the Mauli Ola Foundation, LDS Philanthropies, American Indian Services, Make a Wish Foundation, and more.

They also have a paid business internship program for university students.  

To support those who support the world’s communities: military, veterans, first responders, students, teachers, hospital employees, and government employees get 15% off.

Available: Cariloha

4. MOVESGOOD

We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever, but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with these sustainable bamboo socks... Image by Movesgood #bamboosocks #sustainablejungle
Image by Movesgood
About Movesgood

Move over bamboo processed with harsh chemicals; Movesgood can do so much better.

They embrace slow fashion and consider themselves to be a key member of the movement working to improve the fashion industry. 

They use the best bamboo manufacturing processes around to bring us eco friendly bedding, eco friendly towels, clothes, and women’s and men’s bamboo socks. 

In true (slow) fashion, their range is small but complete: just one-size ankle socks, slip-in no-show socks, and regular above-ankle socks, all in a few different colors.

Movesgood’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

Materials: 

This brand says “goodbye” to dirty, conventional cotton and synthetic fabrics and “hello” to lyocell bamboo (the best of the best in bamboo fabric).

If you’re looking for an odor-resistant fitness sock to pair with your new sustainable running shoes, this breathable and antibacterial bamboo lyocell offers the ideal solution.

The socks also contain 5% elastane.

Supply chain & labor practices: 

Movesgood has factories in both China and Turkey, for which they provide specific details, including working hours, certifications, the total number of employees, and employee benefits. 

They only use factories with fair working conditions.

Green business practices: 

Lyocell bamboo is one of the most environmentally friendly fabrics on the planet because it combines fast-growing bamboo with sustainable lyocell processing.

Only a single organic solvent is used and it’s all recycled for future batches.

Their Lean Production model drives their supply chain and means that production materials are purchased in bulk and transported by boat and train. Because of this, they’re able to keep prices low while also minimizing their footprint through less frequent and slow shipping.

The near climate-neutral brand hopes to have all production in Europe by 2022 to reduce its footprint even more! 

Community & charitable giving:

Movesgood is always making moves toward a better world by supporting issues relating to diabetes, children’s rights, and sustainability.

Available: Movesgood

5. SEASALT

We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever, but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with these sustainable bamboo socks... Image by Seasalt Cornwall #bamboosocks #sustainablejungle
Image by Seasalt Cornwall
About Seasalt

Coming to the rest of the world from Cornwall, Seasalt shares beautiful clothing and accessories while simultaneously incorporating sustainability and local stories. 

Inspired by the natural and cultural magic that surrounds them, every piece is influenced by place and people.

The 40-year-old company brings together a brilliant mix of artists, illustrators, textile and fashion designers to bring their ideas to life, now making them one of Cornwall’s largest employers. 

If you’re looking for socks to show off, this is the brand for you.

The ladies’ bamboo socks come in a range of colors, cute designs, and styles (regular socks, trainer socks, fluffy socks, dress socks, knee socks, tights, and slipper socks). 

While not as numerous, they have a few styles for men, too. 

Seasalt’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

Materials: 

When you throw on a pair of Seasalt bamboo dress socks, you’ll be cushioning your toes in a blend of bamboo viscose, polyamide, and elastane—admittedly not our favorite combination but still better than many alternatives since 80% is the bamboo.

Supply chain & labor practices: 

Over the past four decades, Seasalt has made continuous improvements toward transparency. They now release a slavery and human trafficking statement, purchasing policy, and gender pay gap report. 

Their manufacturing partners are located in India, China, Pakistan, Vietnam, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Turkey, Bulgaria, and the US. 

Each partner must sign and comply with their ethical standards commitment statement, which is based on the Ethical Trading Initiative code. It covers issues like working conditions, living wages, child labor, forced labor, and discrimination. 

They conduct regular audits and surprise visits to monitor compliance. 

Green business practices: 

Quality and longevity are an important focus for Seasalt.

They prioritize the use of natural, organic, recycled, and eco-friendly fibers (like ethical wool) and implement policies and practices to reduce their carbon footprint.

They offer recyclable packaging and a ReLoved program that sells gently used Seasalt clothes. 

This barely scratches the surface of their efforts. Read more in their Sustainability Report

Inclusivity: 

Seasalt is committed to celebrating all women of all shapes and ages, and they want everyone to be able to dress with creativity and confidence. You’ll notice a wide range of cuts, sizes, styles, colors, and fabrics to meet the needs of every woman. 

The company is made up of 82% women, who also make up the majority of leadership roles. 

Community & charitable giving:

For every pair of socks sold, 20p (around $0.33) is donated to charity.

Available: Seasalt

6. DORIS & DUDE

We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever, but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with these sustainable bamboo socks... Image by Doris and Dude #bamboosocks #sustainablejungle
Image by Doris & Dude
About Doris & Dude

Put a (sustainable) spring in your step with Doris & Dude.

Socks are their forte—in fact, they’re the only thing they sell.

It all started when Doris gave Dude (a lover of eco friendly flip flops and rare wearer of socks) a pair of socks. Wishing they were more fun, the pair had an idea to create socks people would actually enjoy wearing.

This means they come in just about any adorable design you could imagine for men, women, and kids. Lime Pigs, Blue Avocado, Green Flamingo, and Red Rhino are just a few, and those aren’t just kids bamboo socks—they believe fun feet should be for the whole family!

As far as styles go, they keep it pretty simple with ankle socks, knee socks, and XL mid-calf socks.

Doris & Dude’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

Materials: 

Regardless of your foot fashion choice, you’ll be getting a blend of 40% bamboo, 40% GOTS-certified organic cotton, 17% recycled polyester, and a bit of elastane.

Supply chain & labor practices: 

 Everything is dyed in and manufactured in Portugal, meeting all EU labor laws and fair pay standards

Green business practices: 

All D&D (no not that kind) socks are mailed using recyclable packaging.

Available: Ethical Superstore

HOW WE FOUND THE BEST BAMBOO SOCKS

Let’s make like pandas and munch through some bamboo, as we consider its place in sustainable and ethical fashion. 

If you’ve followed along on our sustainable fashion journey, you might realize that in our exploration of bamboo, we found out that in most cases it’s actually not that sustainable. 

True, it grows in an environmentally supporting way and has some built-in biodegradability.

Plus, it’s breathable, antibacterial, and everything you would want close to those stinky feet of yours. 

But the way in which it is processed can be heavily greenwashed, which is why we need to be extra diligent in applying the following criteria when bamboo is involved.

If you’d like to try some other sock options, check out our article about sustainable and eco friendly socks.

Materials: 

In many cases, bamboo rayon/viscose (which makes up most of the bamboo fabrics we see) is made in a water- and chemical-intensive way that’s pollutive and bad for workers.

It kind of defeats the point of having a super sustainable base material if you’re going to saturate it with toxic chemicals to render it into fabric…

That’s why closed-loop bamboo (also known as bamboo lyocell) is a clear winner. It keeps most of the benefits of bamboo and recycles water and solvents (thus doing away with pollution). Even more ideal are brands that use closed-loop methods AND non-toxic solvents.

Many of these brands are in fact using this type of bamboo (whew) or organic bamboo. When they’re not, they blend their bamboo rayon with sustainable fabrics like organic cotton and recycled polyester. 

But what about that ever-pervasive elastane?

We found out from Doris & Dude that spandex (AKA elastane or lycra) got its name because it’s an anagram of why it’s so necessary in socks: it “expands”, to seven times its original length!

We’re admittedly not the biggest fan of the man-made fiber, but it’s got stretchability that is impossible to beat.

We don’t know about you, but socks that slide down to the bottom of the shoe are the worst. So, I guess we’ll let this stretchy and unsustainable fabric slide in small amounts—until we find a better alternative, that is. 

Supply chain and labor practices: 

Holey socks are like holes in a supply chain that allow in child/forced labor and unsafe conditions. Fortunately, these brands have strong and sustainable bamboo ankle socks and codes of conduct, audits, and other measures to keep manufacturing practices ethical. 

Some even share specific details about factories or are in organizations dedicated to improving the fashion industry as a whole (like the Ethical Trading Initiative and Common Objective).

Green business practices: 

Recycled packaging, energy conservation, reductions in factory discharges, local supply chains, circular programs to sell gently used clothes, and slow fashion practices are what keep our toes wiggling in excitement. 

Community & charitable giving: 

It’s clear that a pair of socks can do a lot: support environmental and social organizations, provide garment donations to charities, or support university students with internship programs! 


FINAL THOUGHTS ON BAMBOO SOCKS

While it’s hard to imagine that a tall, tough, tree-like plant can turn into something soft and snug, bamboo is actually one of the most effective fabrics for keeping stinky feet at bay.

When done right, it’s also an extremely eco-friendly one at that.

Until we find a sustainable substitute for stretchy spandex or elastane though, pure bamboo socks aren’t yet a possibility. The best we can do is look for minimal synthetic content or recycled synthetic content.

If your sock drawer is looking a little low, fill in the holes by pairing up with one of these brands.

Once you’ve appropriately learned what to do with your old socks of course!  

Or, if you have an aunt that will without a doubt give you a pair of socks for Christmas, share this article with her in advance—so at least they’ll be something you actually want! 


We haven’t found a material that keeps a pair of socks together forever, but we have found a better way to keep our feet dry and comfortable with these sustainable bamboo socks... Image by Cariloha #bamboosocks #sustainablejungle

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