18 ETHICAL AND SUSTAINABLE MENS CLOTHING COMPANIES

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Kuyichi Pure Goods #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by Kuyichi Pure Goods

Some men care about their clothes… some men don’t.  Regardless of which camp you fall into, we hope you at least care about the impact of your clothing.  For many guys, just shopping can be enough torture without all the added pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing.

Sustainable Jungle to the rescue!  We’ve done the hard work for you by seeking out the very best ethical men’s clothing brands.  With this list, you won’t even have to leave your couch to get yourself looking and feeling like a brand-new man.  Just don’t go too crazy. Minimalism is the best tool we have toward sustainability!

For more information on how we chose these brands, make sure you have a read at the bottom of the article.  We’d rather empower consumers to make ethical decisions than take our word as garment gospel.

If you’re not a fan of browsing, the best ethical and sustainable mens clothing brands we found in the USA are Patagonia for their dedication to driving multiple sustainability agendas, Everlane for the biggest (and possibly the most fashionable) selection and Outerknown for their style.

Oh and for all basics from underwear to sweatpants, Pact is our favorite. 

Please remember to use this list as a resource only when you actually need to upgrade and buy sustainable menswear.  If you have enough clothing already, keep using it until you can’t, then find a way to recycle it properly. 

For things like suits, tuxedos, and other high end sustainable mens clothing that you will only wear once, The Mr. Collection offers ethical men’s rental clothing and a personalized styling service. 

SUSTAINABLE MEN’S CLOTHING BASED IN THE USA / CANADA

1. EVERLANE

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Everlane #sustainablemensclothing #sustainablemensfashion
Image by Everlane

About Everlane 

And the award for sustainable mens clothing brand with the biggest selection goes to Everlane!  This is a one-stop-shop for all your business-casual and everyday needs.  Their selection includes shirts and polos, suit jackets and slacks, recycled down parkas, underwear, ethical sneakers, and so much more.

This San Francisco based company was founded in 2010 by Jesse Farmer and CEO Michael Preysman. In 2015, this inspiring company earned 25-year-old Michael, a spot on Forbes’ 30 Under 30.

Everlane’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices 

  • Material:  Despite its huge selection, Everlane uses a surprisingly finite list of fabrics in its men’s clothing.  Most garments are made of 100% linen, 100% cotton, and 100% recycled polyester (check out their cozy-looking ReNew Fleece!).   

We also love the look of the Re:Down Reversible Puffer (pictured), made of a 100% recycled polyester shell and filled with 100% recycled down.

Their pants are less sustainable than their tops. Just about all of them have some degree of elastane, making the otherwise natural fibers non-compostable. Other pants are made of Italian wool (but there’s no mention on whether it’s sustainably sourced).  Especially avoid their Performance Jeans which contain 4% “Other Fiber”.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Everlane rests on three guiding principles: “Exceptional quality.  Ethical Factories. Radical Transparency.”  

Each product description states where the fabric is sourced, where it’s made (click through to see the factory and their vendor code of conduct), and the true cost of that garment’s production.  Transparency extends to pricing, too!

Dedicated to the mantra #KnowYourFactories, Everlane takes traceability very seriously. They include an interactive map of all factories, each of which is audited yearly in compliance to CA SB657 Supply Chain Transparency Act.

  • Green business practices:  Everlane’s started its newest sustainable ReNew line in 2019. It’s made entirely of recycled synthetics to help eliminate virgin plastic from their production by 2021.
  • Inclusivity: Everlane tops come in XS-XXL, and many have the option of short and long torso, and slim and regular.  Their pants are equally inclusive, the smallest being 28×28 and the largest 40×34, with every size in between.  Most pants also come in either slim or athletic cuts.
  • Community & charitable giving: Everlane ‘s biggest yearly charitable campaign is their Black Friday fund. They donate $15 per order to clean up ocean plastic through Oceana.  In 2019, they raised $300,000, their best yet, and enough to fund Oceana for a full year. 

Available: Everlane

2. PACT

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by PACT #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by PACT

About Pact

If you’ve read our other fashion pieces, you might recognize this brand. Pact makes ethical underwear and activewear for men, women, and children. 

Their well-made and affordable ethical men’s clothing includes items like socks, boxers, briefs, sweatpants, T shirts, polos, long sleeve tops, and hoodies. All garments are classics for a timeless look that will pair easily with any outfit.

Pact ’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

  • Materials: By far, Pact’s go-to fiber is Fair Trade organic cotton and most of the products are 100% made of it. No wonder these eco friendly fair trade men’s clothing are one of the best selling in the niche. 

A handful of garments, like their Stretch Fit tee, have small blends of spandex for greater active performance. Their sweats also have elastic in the waistband but this is less problematic because you can at least cut it out to compost the rest of the garment!

Always opt for the pure organic cotton ones if you have the option.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Based in Boulder, Colorado Pact still chooses to manufacture in India, where 74% of their organic cotton is sourced.  

“It makes a lot of economical and environmental sense for our clothing to be made where our organic cotton is harvested […] We view this as an opportunity to better the global community and make an impact on lives all over.”

All Pact garments are produced in certified Fair Trade factories and their promise is that all their clothing is sweatshop and child labor free.

  • Green business practices: Pact’s choice to use organic cotton saves 95% of the water used to produce regular cotton. It also employs water and energy-saving production methods and aims to reduce fabric trimmings. 

  • Inclusivity: Pact’s motto is #JustWearYou and sizes run between small and extra-large. Adding some larger options would make it more inclusive. A pro tip for smaller sizes – order the larger kids sizes to save you money!
  • Community & charitable giving: Pact runs a clothing donation program called Give Back. Wear Forward. They donate gently used clothes from all brands to non-profits who distribute them to those in need. After all, why is there so much textile waste when there are so many people without?

Available:  Pact   Amazon

3. OUTERKNOWN

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Outerknown #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by Outerknown

About Outerknown

Surf inspired or adventure-ready? Outerknown makes fair trade mens clothing including sweatshirts, jeans, tees, henleys, polos, swim trunks, and outerwear that are rustic in appearance, rugged in build and soft to the touch. 

We personally love their 100% cotton plaid “blanket shirts” (pictured). They are basically just eco-friendly and sustainable mens flannels. And who doesn’t love a good flannel? 

In particular, look for their S.E.A. (Social and Environmental Accountability)-approved garments. This indicates they surpass the strictest sustainable and ethical manufacturing standards.

Eleven-time World Surf League champion Kelly Slater founded Outerknown in collaboration with designer John Moore. They believe that “we have a responsibility to make clothing that respects the world around us.”  For the adventure-driven readers, “Sustainability is the destination, Outerknown is the journey.” 

Outerknown’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices 

  • Materials: Outerknown uses primarily natural fabrics like organic cotton, hemp, alpaca wool, and RDS-certified down.  Their Selvedge jeans are one of our favorite natural garments, made of 100% organic cotton.  Note that the Stretch Jeans have a 2% spandex addition so they might not be the best choice if you prefer 100% natural materials.

While mens outerwear and sustainable clothing aren’t always compatible notions, Outerknown is innovating the field.  Here they use high or full percentage blends of recycled synthetics. 

Materials like recycled polyester, Econyl (for swimwear), and PFOA-free DWR are more sustainable.  Need a rain jacket as the weather gets weirder year by year? They’ve got you covered with one that’s 100% recycled polyester. 

As a Bluesign certified outdoor clothing brand, all garments are processed with minimal chemicals.  Even their buttons are sustainable, made from either recycled polyester or natural corozo nuts.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Outerknown believes “sustainability starts with transparency,” so they publish their full list of suppliers.  While manufacturing takes place in Peru, Mexico, and China, each Outerknown garment is Fair Trade Certified™ sewn.

Every supplier and factory must abide by their Code of Conduct and Fair Labor Association (FLA) standards.  

  • Inclusivity: Despite their athletic and outdoorsy target audience, Outerknown’s sizes for their sustainable eco friendly men’s clothing are fully inclusive. Tops range from S-XXL, pant waists from 28”-38”, and inseam lengths from 30″ to 34″. 
Available: Outerknown

4. GROCERIES APPAREL

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Groceries Apparel #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by Groceries Apparel

About Groceries Apparel 

Groceries Apparel is a U.S. fashion brand that believes fashion doesn’t need to be about putting profit over people and planet: 

We are redefining transparency and human responsibility by supporting family farms, localized manufacturing, living wages, and Monsanto-free post-consumer ingredients. […] We are the future of our industry and we are here to create a demand for our values and would rather go out of business than compromise.”

Their range of comfortable and affordable sustainable mens clothing is mostly t shirts (see them on our ethical T shirts list), but they do have a handful of hoodies, sweatshirts, and joggers.

Groceries Apparel’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

  • Materials: Groceries Apparel’s main organic fabrics are California-grown GOTS organic cotton, Lyocell, and hemp. For synthetics, they use lots of recycled plastics.

You’ll find a few less sustainable synthetics, though they do try to make even these as sustainable as possible. For example, some garments replace spandex with more sustainable Thiuram and Caba-free Spandex. Still, be sure to avoid the styles that do contain regular spandex, where possible.

Use their shop “by ingredient” function on their website to help you out.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Groceries Apparel makes all garments in their  California-based factory, allowing complete control over its operations. Employees work in excellent conditions and receive fair wages, even above California’s high minimum wage.

98% of their materials come from local Los Angeles vendors which keeps shipping emissions down and boosts the local economy.

  • Green business practices: Groceries Apparel is a “Seed to Skin” company, which represents the gamut of their beliefs, unable to be covered by a single certification.

We source directly to the seed and trace all of our fabrics from the farm to our factory. We only use 100% GMO-free, Pesticide & Herbicide-free, Recycled & Fair-traded Ingredients. From seed to skin we are committed to developing awareness of all lifecycle stages of our fabrics and garments.”

  • Inclusivity: Groceries Apparel sizes for men run a standard S-XL

Available:  Groceries Apparel   |  Amazon   |   Nordstrom

5. PASSION LILIE

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Passion Lilie #sustainablemensclothing #menssustainablefashion
Image by Passion Lilie

About Passion Lilie 

Katie Schmidt’s Passion Lilie has TONS of eco street cred. They’re a member of the Fair Trade Federation, a Green America Certified Business, and Ethical Fashion Forum Fellowship 500 Member. Azo-free dyes impressed us!

Their fair trade mens clothing includes mostly printed button-downs, available in long or short sleeves and lots of patterns. They also carry one style of chambray shorts.

Passion Lilie’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices 

  • Materials: Passion Lilie’s organic sustainable mens clothing is just that, 100% organic and non-GMO cotton. This cotton is hand block printed with eco dyes via ikat dyeing and weaving procedures. This helps to preserve these ancient Indian fabric processing methods.
  • Supply chain & labor practices: Passion Lilie’s manufacturing happens thanks to various family factories in India. These World Fair Trade Organization certified factories are in Bangalore, Jaipur, Tirupur, and Hyderabad.

    Each one aims to provide disadvantaged community members with health care, fair wages, loan opportunities, and meaningful, reliable work. Read more about their workers here.
  • Green business practices: Passion Lilie’s production is almost entirely non-mechanized. They hand wash and sun dry their fabrics, then hand weave and use block printing to give them their patterns.  Read or watch their demonstration of hand block printing. 

Additionally, they reuse leftover fabric scraps to make accessories.

  • Inclusivity: Sizes range from S-2XL and are modeled by a variety of men. We love that the range meets a range of budgets.
  • Community & charitable giving: Passion Lilie prefers to help charities that their customers are passionate about. Contact them to organize a Passion Lille trunk show and donate the proceeds to a charity close to your heart. 

Available:  Passion Lilie  Etsy  Made Trade

6. PATAGONIA

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Patagonia #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by Patagonia

About Patagonia

Ever wonder, “What is the most ethical men’s clothing in the USA?” Patagonia is probably it. 

Maybe we’re biased because their garments have worked well for us during our travels and outdoor endeavors, but we’re not sorry because Patagonia is one of the most sustainably-minded brands around. 

They have the best Fair Trade mens clothing including sweaters, pullovers, rain jackets, ski jackets, down and synthetic jackets, vests, pants for hiking and climbing, swim trunks, hats, underwear, t-shirts, gloves, and backpacks. You name it, they make it.

Even though they’ve been around since the 1980s and are one of the biggest names in outdoor apparel they keep their line limited and focus on improving classic designs. By limiting new designs they’ve created a more timeless collection that never goes out of style.  Browse the brand on any number of online thrift stores and you’ll see that retro Patagonia is highly coveted.

Take one of Patagonia’s first designs, the Synchilla Snap-T fleece; it’s still a best seller with a rad retro 90s vibe. It’s one of the coziest pullovers you’ll ever don and will leave you feeling eco-friendly and fly. 

Patagonia’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

  • Material: Patagonia has a full gamut of clothing including the fabric to create it all. Not all garments are equally sustainable, but Patagonia improves the number of those that are yearly.

Their most sustainable materials are made from 100% organic non-GMO natural fibers like cotton (like their Responsibili-Tee), hemp, and linen. Next are Patagonia’s recycled synthetics, necessary for more technical garments.  They use 100% recycled poly for the extensive Capilene line of activewear basics and the solid colors in their base layers. 

They also use ethically sourced and certified wool and down for some of their insulation layers and sustainable mens winter clothing. 

All inks are PVC-free and phthalate-free, and you can shop their bluesign® approved garments to ensure no toxic chemicals were used.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Patagonia scored 70% in Fashion Revolution’s most recent Fashion Transparency Index. This is the highest percentage obtained by only a few companies.

Despite their huge supply chain, they adhere to the California Supply Chains Act of 2010 SB 657 and try to give consumers as much info as possible via The Footprint Chronicles. This includes listing factory details at the bottom of each product page. 

They are also Fair Trade certified and their factories are regularly audited by third parties and visited by executive staff members. 

  • Green business practices: Patagonia operates with the environment at its heart, through their numerous green business choices.  All their cotton is organic and 72% of their current line utilizes recycled materials, a percentage that grows year by year. 
  • Inclusivity: Patagonia is marketed toward and modeled by slimmer athletic types. However, their XS-XXL sizes are for anyone and everyone.  Their XS-XXL size range is among the most inclusive of outdoor clothing companies. 

For measured pants, waist sizes run 28” to 40” in short, regular, and long inseams to fit men of all shapes and sizes.  If you’re on the smaller end of the size spectrum, their kid’s sizes fill in any gaps, though there isn’t as much design selection there.

  • Community & charitable giving: Patagonia is the founding company of 1% for the Planet. They donate either 1% of every sale or 10% of pre-tax profits (whichever is more) to grassroots environmental initiatives. Check out Patagonia Action Works for some worthy ones near you if you want to get involved.

They take up the mantle of corporate responsibility at a brand-wide level and at an industry level, too.  They help other brands to be more environmentally and socially responsible.  

Some of the ways they do this is by publishing books like The Responsible Company and CEO Yvon Chouinard’s memoir Let My People Go Surfing. They also give back by fighting for causes on a political scale.  Read more here.  

Available:  Patagonia  |   Backcountry

7. NAU

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Nau #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by Nau

About Nau 

Nau has been making performance wear for both urban and outdoor exploration for over a decade. Their designs hold up to tough environments but still have a fashionable and timeless flair that fits in on the streets of New York. 

While they specialize in outwear (think insulated vests, bomber jackets, parkas, and trench coats), you’ll also find some casual button-downs, T shirts, and utility pants.

One of their three core values is “make clothing that lasts,” and their durable ethical men’s clothing is designed to last a lifetime.

Nau’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices 

  • Materials: Nau prioritizes the use of sustainable fabrics, as that’s where the greatest impact of a garment comes from.  That’s why they use the same 10 fabrics for all their gear – until they discover something even better!

These fabrics include RWS certified merino and alpaca wool, recycled wool, GRS recycled polyester (also certified by Recycle 100 and SCS), closed-loop Micro Modal, Tencel Lyocell, linen, hemp, GOTS-certified organic cotton, and recycled down (sourced from old duvets and pillows!). 

Many of these fabrics are FSC-certified and bluesign Approved, and free from banned substances. For waterproofing, they use either PFC-free DWR coating or a natural waxed cotton canvas

Some of their most sustainable garments include their 100% recycled polyester fleece layers, 100% recycled nylon shell and 100% recycled down-filled vests. We only found a few garments with small blends of virgin synthetics to avoid, like their Sandvik waterproof jacket.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: While Nau is a USA based sustainable mens clothing brand, their fabrics come from China, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Thailand, and the USA. 

They only manufacture in factories across Canada, China, Thailand, and Turkey where they have built long term relationships and “whose practices and integrity we know and trust”.  

This is because “only experienced suppliers in Asia have the technical expertise required to work with [many of their chosen sustainable materials], which is the primary reason for manufacturing there.”  

While they state that each factory adheres to an ethical code of conduct and is subject to third party audits, they don’t state much more about these. 

  • Green business practices: To cut shipping emissions Nau claims to keep production facilities as close to the fabric and hardware sources.
  • Inclusivity: Nau sizes their tops from S-XL, and pants 28” to 38” waists with a 32” to 35” inseam range.  Unfortunately, their pants aren’t designed for shorter guys and mainly suit those looking for tall eco friendly mens clothing.
  • Community & charitable giving: Nau donates 2% of every dollar to various grassroots environmentalist causes, “so every purchase you make at Nau supports sustainability. On every level.”

Available: Nau

8. TENTREE

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by TenTree #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by TenTree

About Tentree

Tentree is a Canadian maker of outdoor sustainable mens clothing, aiming to “motivate and encourage environmental stewardship through earth-first apparel”.   This includes earth-inspired graphic tees, tanks, button-ups, and hoodies (which honestly look SO SOFT). 

They also make shorts, pants, jackets, winter jackets, and tons of accessories like wallets, hats, bags, and scarves.

Despite this huge selection, Tentree knows the importance of small. “We believe in the power of small acts, so by empowering everyone and anyone with easy access to sustainable solutions, those tiny seeds of change, can grow to change the world. #ItTakesAForest” 

Tentree’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

  • Materials: Tentree has some of the highest percentages of purely sustainable fabrics that we’ve seen.  They mostly use things like organic cotton, hemp, TENCEL, and REPREVE® recycled polyester. Only a small handful of products include a small % of elastane, and that is pretty rare in their range.

See this page and click on each fabric for links to shop each one. We love how they’ve made it so easy to shop sustainably!

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Tentree “ensure[s] that all the people who work with Tentree are respected, valued, and feel safe.”  This B-corp is doing a pretty great job and scored a 124.6 on the 2019 audit.  That puts them in the top 1% for manufacturing!

B-corp audits aside, they require all suppliers and partners to sign their code of conduct.  Their website specifies where each product was made by including a comprehensive Factory Ledger.  All factories bear one or more certifications by WRAP, BSCI, SA8000, Fair Trade, and Fair Wear Foundation.

  • Green business practices: Each product has an Eco Log, which compares the water, CO2, and waste saved in comparison to producing a similar garment in the conventional way. These impact assessments are compiled by GreenStep which they also use to assess the impact before even starting production. 

  • Inclusivity: One of Tentree’s three main goals is to be accessible, in affordability and body inclusivity.  While they are an outdoor brand, they are not JUST that. Instead, they make products “for those who identify with the outdoors, but are not defined by them”. Men’s tops are available in S-XXL, and bottoms in 30” to 40”.

  • Community & charitable giving: The name Tentree comes from the company’s primary aim and giving model.  For every item purchased, they plant TEN TREES in either Madagascar, Indonesia, Senegal, Nepal, Canada, Mexico, Peru, or Haiti.  As of March 2020, they’ve planted over 41 million trees, but aim to grow 1 billion by 2030. 

Aside from countering climate change on a global scale, they plant trees specifically in areas of damaged biodiversity and needed land restoration. They choose fast growing multi-purpose trees (while carefully avoiding invasive species) because the “goal is the rapid and continued return of indigenous diversity to these lands”.

After making a purchase, you can register your trees to see where they get planted and track their impact. They’ll even provide proof (in the form of geotagging photos with GPS coordinates) of your planting if you contact them directly.

Available: Tentree 

9. KOTN

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by KOTN #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by KOTN

About Kotn

Kotn was founded in 2014 by friends Rami, Ben, and Mackenzie. Their solution to the rampant abuse of scope and scale of the fashion industry? Ethically sourced Gossypium Barbadense, more commonly known as Egyptian cotton.

This certified B-corp makes affordable sustainable mens clothing, which includes the ever-coveted flannel shirts, business casual button-downs, sweatshirts, sweatpants, chinos, long johns, work pants, and even robes.  The best part is they’re all 100% cotton. 

Kotn’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

  • Materials: Most of the world’s cotton usage consists of short fiber cotton, while Pima and Egyptian cotton are long fiber crops making more durable fabric of higher thread count (so it’s softer, too!).  Sadly, these premium cottons only comprise 10% of garments. 

Kotn goes beyond this and uses Giza “white gold” cotton, the finest of all Egyptian cotton available. While Kotn garments are all 100% Giza cotton, not all of it is organically grown yet:

“Many farms lack the knowledge, resources, or motivation to become 100% certified organic. Our belief is that the future of Egyptian cotton rests on its ability to mobilize and lead the way in agriculture and sustainability. For this reason, we’ve embarked on a project to ensure 100% of our cotton is certified organic within the next five years. 

However, instead of simply neglecting the farms that don’t already have these practices in place, we’ll be working with each farm to set up these systems, so they too can participate in a more sustainable future.”

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Kotn is a direct trade company. They buy their cotton directly from family-run farms at set prices, so the farmers won’t suffer as the market value of cotton naturally varies. They call this method “like farm-to-table, but for your clothes.” Kotn also subsidizes the cost of fertilizer and agricultural consultants to help their farmers succeed. 

All farms and factories are subject to regular third-party audits, which includes interviews with the workers to ensure they are happy:

“We work with partners who believe in a commitment to their employees; not to be regarded as robots or cogs in a wheel, but as craftspeople with boundless potential. Our partners have some of the best employee retention around, promoting from within, with equal opportunity for all.”

  • Green business practices: Giza cotton can only be grown in the Nile Delta region south of Alexandria. This is a huge benefit as it centralizes its supply chain within a 100km radius.

Giza cotton also has to be handpicked, as machines can stress and even damage its long, fine strands. Happy coincidence, though, as there are very few machine emissions created and more jobs created.

  • Inclusivity: Kotn uses inclusive models and sizes their tops XS-XXL.  Their pants range from 29/30 to 38/32.
  • Community & charitable giving:  Kotn collaborates with a local Egyptian NGO to stop the cycle of child labor. They provide education for children from their cotton farming communities. 

The focus is on girls who traditionally have fewer educational opportunities in Egypt. A portion of each sale goes toward building schools, buying books, and paying/training teachers.

Available: Kotn

10. PRANA

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by prAna #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by prAna

About prAna

As a division of sportswear megastore Columbia, prAna may be the brand’s baby but their clothing is some of the most sought after in the world of outdoor apparel. 

prAna sells organic fair trade mens yoga clothing and all manner of clothing for swimming, surfing, and rock climbing . They even feature casual wear like their ethical dresses. Now gents, we know this article is about you, but don’t discount these; there could be a great gift to surprise your special lady! 

For their ethical and sustainable menswear, you’ll find super soft organic cotton graphic tees, hoodies, sweaters, climbing pants, shorts, swimwear, activewear and more.

prAna’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices 

  • Materials: prAna has a huge product lineup, which means that not all their fabrics are entirely sustainable yet. Consistent improvement is the primary goal.

Be sure to read the fabric contents while shopping and avoid any virgin synthetic materials. prAna’s website filters make it easy to find alternative fabrics.

Options include garments made from organic cotton, recycled polyester, hemp, TENCEL modal, sustainably harvested merino wool, and RDS-certified down. 

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Despite a vast supply chain that spans many countries, prAna is committed to gaining as much traceability and transparency as possible.

Not all prAna garments are Fair Trade certified but as a member of the Textile Exchange they maintain social responsibility even among the factories that aren’t officially certified. 

If you want to be sure your garments are fair trade, you can filter for this on their website among other ethical and sustainability criteria.  You can also shop by country of origin if you want to know exactly where your clothes are made.

  • Green business practices: prAna is an official bluesign® partner and makes garments with the least amount of toxic substances. This partnership requires all their factories and fabric mills be audited to ensure they don’t have harmful chemical processing.

    This means less chemical factory runoff, a less dangerous work environment for the factory employees, skin safe wear, and earth safe compostability at the end of life (provided it’s an organic fiber).
  • Inclusivity: prAna is an outdoor brand and their marketing and branding comes with an athletic bent to match. For those of you aren’t athletic, fear not. prAna still makes tops and jackets from sizes XS-XL and pants ranging from 28” to 40”. 

Inseams start at 30” which might not fit guys on the shorter side.

  • Community & charitable giving: prAna funds individual charitable projects, like surf camps for young girls, organized by their ambassadors.  They also donate to the Outdoor Outreach program. This allows disenfranchised urban youth the opportunity to get into the great outdoors and receive training in outdoor leadership. 

Available:  prAna 

11. UNITED BY BLUE

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by United By Blue #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by United By Blue

About United By Blue

“Change comes in waves” and we’re here to ride that wave towards more sustainable shores, potentially wearing United By Blue’s ethical men’s clothing. 

This is another outdoorsy brand that surprisingly comes to us from the urban streets of Philadelphia, PA. United By Blue is a certified B-Corp that “started with a mission to prove that a for-profit company could do serious, dirty conservation work”.

Whether on water or land, United By Blues’ line of swimwear, hiking pants, T shirts, plaid flannels, puffers, chinos, accessories, backpacks, and camp supplies will leave the sustainable shopper a happy camper. 

To encourage you to join them and #QuitSingleUse they also sell everyday reusables to ease your passage into plastic-free.

United By Blue’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices 

  • Materials: United By Blue’s core sustainable materials are hemp, organic cotton, REPREVE recycled polyester, micro modal, wool, and TENCEL.  For dyes, they use vegetable dyes.  

These even use biodegradable Corozo buttons, also known as ‘vegetable ivory’. These are made from Tagua Palm nuts (from Central America) and are renewable. One tree can produce 50 pounds of nuts a year for over 100 years.

Unite By Blue also has a series of signature, innovative fabrics that could be an absolute game-changer for sustainable outdoor fabrics.  These include:

      • EcoKnit: A line of “better basics” made from 100% natural fibers like hemp, organic cotton, modal and yak.
      • (R)evolution™: Used in packs and accessories, this ultra durable form of recycled PET is stain resistant and sustains daily wear and tear without shedding microfibers.
      • Bison Shield (not vegan): A super versatile fiber that can be spun into a wool-like yarn or stuffed like insulation.  It’s a “throw-away” in the meat industry, so stepping in and using this fiber does not harm bison further and prevents further waste.
      • AllDay Chambray™ (not vegan): A light and breathable fabric made of a blend of organic cotton, hemp, and yak fiber.
      • EcoDry: Launching soon, this will be a line of moisture-wicking garments made only of organic cotton and recycled polyester

Note that some garments still use virgin synthetics and might be best to avoid as they don’t meet our sustainable fashion criteria.  You may have to exercise some picky sifting here, but there are plenty of fully natural and/or recycled garments to choose from.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: United By Blue has been a certified B-corp since 2011 and was named a ‘Best for the World Honoree’ three years running.  They currently hold an impact score of 80.1, which is well above the 50.9 average of B-Corp businesses

See the 2019 Impact Report for even more details on the environmental impact. 

They manufacture in seven GOTS, OCS, and/or Fair Trade-certified factories across Turkey, China, Vietnam, and the USA.  A full factory list details what they made and what certifications they hold. Each product description also states the country where the item was made.

  • Green business practices: United by Blue is committed to cutting out single-use plastics by phasing out and finding sustainable alternatives for things like poly bags, hang tags, bubble wrap, trim bags, fabric roll packaging, office plastic, shrink wrap, and plastic tape.

Some of these changes have already happened while others are still underway with a “target quit date”.

  • Inclusivity: While United By Blue has an inclusive range of tops from S-XXL. Pants are only available in five sizes from 30” to 38”.
  • Community & charitable giving: For every product sold, this brand sponsors the removal of one pound of trash from the world’s waterways. So far that’s amounted to over 3 million pounds. 

To cultivate a community of activists, they invite you to join one of their cleanups. What better way to bond with the bros than taking a bite out of plastic pollution?

Available:  United By Blue   |   REI   |   Backcountry

12. THREADS 4 THOUGHT

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Threads4Thought #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by Threads4Thought

About Threads 4 Thought 

Despite Threads 4 Thought, aka T4T, being based in fast-paced New York City, they’re slowing fashion down and encouraging people to  #wearthoughtfully. They believe everyone should “wear the change you want to see”.  

They are one of the few ethical clothing companies for men, women, AND kids, in so many categories like loungewear, ethical activewear, casual clothing, and accessories.   Their men’s line includes zip hoodies and pullovers, shorts, joggers, hats, and eco friendly T shirts.

T4T’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

  • Material:  T4T uses various fabric blends of organic cotton, recycled polyester, and Lenzing Modal. Some, like their Triblend jersey products, do contain a small percentage of rayon. We recommend avoiding these particular garments in favor of their completely compostable or recycled ones.
  • Supply chain & labor practices: They are a Fair Trade and Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production (WRAP) certified company. So we can rest easy knowing that all factories and supply chain agents maintain excellent and ethical working conditions.
  • Green business practices: Waste from production processes at their main WRAP-certified factory gets reused. 80% of the water, 95% of the materials and 95% of the fabric trimmings all add up to eliminate water and textile waste.
  • Inclusivity: T4T aims to be budget and lifestyle inclusive by offering interest-free payment installations. Men’s sizes in both tops and bottoms range from S-XXXL.

  • Community & charitable giving:  A percentage of T4T’s profits help refugees and disaster-stricken communities through the International Rescue Committee.

Available:   Threads 4 Thought  |   Amazon  

13. SHERPA ADVENTURE GEAR

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Sherpa Adventure Gear #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by Sherpa Adventure Gear

About Sherpa Adventure Gear 

Sherpa Adventure Gear was founded in 2003 by Tashi Sherpa, a descendant of the Sherpa tribes of the high Himalayas (where they test all their gear for quality assurance purposes). He founded the company as a living memorial to the “unsung heroes of Mt. Everest,” and they operate under the following ethos:

 “We believe in a strong sense of community, whether we are guiding a team up a mountain, or helping our neighbors at home. We believe in leaving the earth a better place than when we arrived […] Each season we grow. But at the core we will always be a small company with a simple vision of doing business in the inimitable way of the Sherpas: One step at a time, helping each other on the climb up, and never losing sight of the destination.”

They make ethical outdoor clothing for both men and women, which includes casual button-ups, T shirts, sweaters, hiking pants, fleece layers, and synthetic puffy vests and jackets. If you’re looking for mens sustainable warm clothing this brand should be on your list.

Sherpa Adventure Gear’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices 

  • Materials: Sherpa fabrics aren’t all 100% sustainable yet, but they’re working toward this noble goal.  Look for designs made of their spotlight fabrics, like organic cotton, Modal, Tencel, and recycled synthetics. They’re doing a lot of work for the latter since technical outdoor gear often demands synthetic fibers to perform in harsh environments.  

Many of their Thermal Pro® fleece layers are made with Polartec’s Repreve® and recycled polyester made from plastic bottles.  For puffy insulation, they use Primaloft® which uses 50% or more post-consumer recycled fibers.

So far, 39% of their fabrics are OEKO-tex 100 approved and 28% are bluesign® Approved.  Their public impact reports show marked progress year by year. 

They also work with Sustainable Textile Production (STeP) to ensure their use of eco-friendly fabrics, sustainable use of resources, and good social working conditions.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Sherpa has a primary goal to uplift and empower Nepalese families. 55% of their products are made in Nepal, creating a total of 1,228 total jobs. They write: 

“Our brand strengthens the fabric of Nepali families, villages, and the country as a whole by providing meaningful employment to the people of Nepal. While many of the young men of Nepal leave the country to send income home, a majority of women and children remain. The income our skilled knitters are able to earn, at home and in small co-ops, provides them with the independence to make valuable choices for their families and communities.”

This home co-op style gives workers comfort and freedom in their work environment. Their larger scale factories must meet strict compliance criteria. Fair wages are confirmed by submission of detailed payroll reports

  • Inclusivity: Sherpa Adventure Gear tops run from S-XXL, but their 30” to 38” pants are a bit less body-inclusive.
  • Community & charitable giving: The Sherpa Adventure Gear Fund is an annual scholarship program that supports the entire education for twelve students from remote villages. They attend one of the top schools in Kathmandu from elementary school through college.  

The program pays for tuition, food and lodging, extra-curricular activities, and uniforms. Every single product sold sees a percentage donated directly to this program.

Available:  Sherpa Adventure Gear   |   REI   |   Amazon

SUSTAINABLE MEN’S CLOTHING BASED IN THE UK / EUROPE

14. KUYICHI

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Kuyichi Pure Goods #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by Kuyichi Pure Goods

About Kuyichi

Blue jeans are a staple in most wardrobes but traditional denim manufacturing is incredibly unsustainable. It gobbles up millions of gallons of water and saturates hectares of land with chemicals. One pair of jeans takes 3,781 liters of water to produce.  Now consider that over 2 billion pairs are made annually.

Needless to say, Europe based, Kuyichi’s “Pure Denim” is a refreshing change of a planet-friendly pace. We never knew blue could be so green.

Kuyichi, the world’s first organic denim brand was founded in 2001 by the NGO Solidaridad as an alternative to Peru’s poor and polluting cotton industry.  Their search for big brands who were interested in implementing organic farming practices failed so they decided to be their own brand.

Denim aside, they also make oxford button-downs, short and long sleeve tees, hoodies, and shorts in classic staple wardrobe colors like red, white, navy, black, and gray. 

Kuyichi’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices 

  • Materials: The superstar fabric of Kuyichi clothing is GOTS organic cotton, which accounts for all virgin cotton. They recently signed the Global Fashion Agenda commitment to using more Post-Consumer Recycled Denim (aka recycled cotton) in the future.  You can currently shop this line here

To produce denim, they use water and power saving laser washing techniques (which also increases the fabric strength by 50% and workplace efficiency by 500%), chemical-free ozone bleaching, and natural indigo dyeing. It is finished without any sandblasting, abrasive blasting, or stone washing as they create dust that is hazardous to workers. 

Other fabrics include recycled PET, Tencel, hemp, and linen. 

They’re also PETA vegan after saying “Later, leather” back in 2016.  They’ve kept that classic leather patch on the waistband look by instead making it from a washable recycled paper called Jacron.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Kuyichi is pledged to transparency and we have to say their follow-through is remarkable.  They’re one of the most ethical mens clothing brands we’ve seen.

Operations are based in Utrecht, Peru, but manufacturing takes place in Turkey, Pakistan and Italy. They publish the full list of their factories, along with the number of employees, certifications, products they make, and any other pertinent info. They even provide a fully searchable list of their suppliers that gets updated bi-annually. 

All suppliers, sub-suppliers, and distributors are submitted to the Open Apparel Registry. They must adhere to their Code of Conduct, based on ILO and Fair Wear Foundation standards and the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  

They provide further details on their two main suppliers: Dinateks A.S. (BSCI certified and Fair Wear Foundation audited) and SOORTY (SA8000, ISO9001, GOTS certified,  BSCI and Higgs Index participant).

It’s worth mentioning that Pakistan-based SOORTY provides regular illness screening for its employees. Their blood program ensures that every worker in their factory has reserve blood in case of a medical emergency.

Finally, here’s something we’ve never seen before. This brand does not run sales, (ever!).  This is because the value of “products’ doesn’t change over time and they  should always have a fair price for the consumer, the retailers and the people who make our clothes.” 

While this means they’ll never fall into the cheap sustainable mens clothing category, it does say a lot about their commitment to fair wages.

  • Green business practices: Kuyichi does not believe in seasonal collections.  Jeans are jeans, and they should be timeless and classic, able to be worn in a variety of ways across the years.

Given the thoughtful design, your Kuyichi jeans should last for years and years. When they wear out they encourage you to donate them or take them to one of their Blueloop recycling partners so that they remake them into future Kuyichi jeans.

See the latest Sustainability Report for more on their impact.

  • Inclusivity: Blue jeans are for everyone and they should fit all bodies!  Each Kuyichi pant can be made in any size combination. From 28” to 26” in the waist (with numbers increasing in single digits rather than double for a true fit) and inseams available in 30”, 32”, and 34”.  Tops are equally inclusive from XS-XL.

Available: Kuyichi

15. KNOWLEDGECOTTON APPAREL

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by KnowledgeCotton Apparel #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by KnowledgeCotton Apparel

About KnowledgeCotton Apparel 

Believing in “sustainable menswear that makes a difference”, KnowledgeCotton Apparel designs conscious pieces that are fashionable without being fashion-fickle.  This includes classic garments with a slight contemporary twist to cover you from head to toe. The range includes T shirts, sweaters, jackets pants, shorts, underwear, and swimwear.

Their philosophy consists of three elements: gain knowledge, take action, and earn respect. We especially like what they have to say about that last one: 

“Respect is something you earn. But it is also something you pay others. Your surroundings and the environment. We believe that it is important to pay respect to those around us. We are paying respect to the planet and its citizens and use resources in the best conditions possible.”

KnowledgeCotton Apparel’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

  • Materials: As a member of the Textile Exchange, all garments are either GOTS Certified or Organic Content Standard (OCS) certified via the Ecocert Greenlife certification body IMO. 

These fabrics include organic cotton, organic linen, Tencel, GRS certified recycled polyester, and organic ZQ Merino wool (sourced from animal-welfare minded farms in South America that are mulesing-free). This is the only animal byproduct they use.  Any trims that look like leather are actually synthetic microfibers and create a third of the environmental impact of cow leather. 

Some of the Honest Denim has 2% elastane added to give the jeans more stretch and make them long-lasting.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: KnowledgeCotton Apparel is invested in fighting poverty and child labor. To ensure they don’t contribute to these systems in any way,  their stance on social responsibility is top-notch.  

All their suppliers are third-party certified by a host of entities. From SA8000 Code of Conduct and/or GOTS Code of Conduct, GRS, Fair Trade, to the BSCI supply chain management system. They also have their own Code of Conduct based on ILO standards, the Global Compact, the Declaration of Human Rights 1948, and OSHA.

See a global map of their factory locations by garment here.

  • Green business practices: KCA is aiming for continual improvement, and they’ve set some admirable 2020 goals, which include:

      • Save 2.5 million liters of water by using organic cotton and sustainable materials.
      • Prevent 800,000 liters of chemicals and pesticides from entering the environment. 
      • Stop 1.3 million kg of CO₂ from entering the atmosphere (the same as driving a regular car around the world 114 times).

They’re also on track to becoming 100% carbon neutral including distribution. To get started, they opted in to the climate initiative “CO₂ neutral websites”. As part of this commitment, they offset all carbon emissions relating to the website, both on their end and the consumer end. Yes, they’ll offset the environmental impact of your computer screen when you freely browse their ethical men’s clothing online.

  • Inclusivity: KCA sizes for pant waists run from 26” to 38” and their tops from XS-XXL.  We love the inclusion of rare smaller pant sizes.  

  • Community & charitable giving: KnowledgeCotton Apparel has a forest in India.  Seriously! It currently has over 1,000 trees with plans to grow more to further counter their carbon emissions.

Available:  KnowledgeCotton Apparel    Amazon

16. ASKET

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by ASKET #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by ASKET

About ASKET 

Swedish ethical menswear brand, ASKET is all about the “pursuit of less”. Translated into English, ASKET (ask’e:t) means “a person who does without extravagance and abundance”. 

ASKET’s promise is to restore the value of garments by creating meaningful essentials: A permanent collection of zero-compromise pieces, their stories uncovered and told. We can’t live without clothing, but we can make the pieces we choose to invest in count.”

ASKET have disregarded seasonal collections and their permanent collection includes t-shirts, long sleeve shirts, sweaters, chinos, jeans, cardigans, jacket, scarves, beanies, underwear, socks and belts. 

Lyall actually owns a handful of ASKET clothing including a sweater, a bunch of underwear and a couple of T-shirts and he says these are the best, highest quality items he owns.

ASKET’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices 

  • Materials: ASKET focus on using the “finest natural materials” including traceable Merino wool from Australia, Eqyption and other cotton (not yet traceable), traceable organic cotton from China, cashmere (from multiple nomadic farmers in Mongolia, not currently traceable) and french linen (traceable). 

For things like jacket linings and zippers, they use recycled materials like polyester (e.g. recycled PET bottles) and metal in addition to new finishing materials. In addition to merino and cashmere, they also use leather for their belts, sourced from an Italian artisan maker so they are not suitable for vegan customers. 

While ASKET has a way to go on understanding the extent to which their materials are ethical, we applaud the focus on traceability – you can see exactly what makes up their product and the traceability of each component. For example, their car coat even explains what the shoulder pads are made of and where they come from!

  • Supply chain & labor practices: ASKET’s goal is 100% traceability for their entire collection. They publish their progress by product on their traceability page as well on each product page. They share their list of factories across the world in Italy, Portugal, Poland, Australia, Czech Republic, Tunisia, Romania, Japan, Germany and China.  

For each of these factories, you can read in detail about the practices, employees and the last visit from ASKET. ASKET has not yet visited all their factories but their intent is to do so and they are very transparent about which they have visited so far. Here’s an example from the Pique Polo Knitting Factory in Tunisia.

They also are super transparent about the true cost of their products, each page includes a breakdown of the cost of their materials and production.

  • Green business practices: ASKET provides stain and care guides on their website to help their customers make their clothing last as long as possible.
  • Inclusivity: ASKET has replaced standard sizing with their own extended size system to include a wide range of body types. They also use a range of models.

Available:  ASKET

17. BROTHERS WE STAND

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Brothers We Stand #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by Brothers We Stand

About Brothers We Stand

For readers across the pond who want easy access to sustainable mens clothing in the UK, Brothers We Stand is a collective clothing company and retailer. They collect the best garments from other sustainable brands like KnowledgeCotton Apparel.  

All are rigorously researched and vetted to demonstrate “standout ethical behaviour [and] positive impact on people or planet that goes beyond the norm” and meet their 6-Point BWS Standard.  This helps consumers to find truly ethical brands easily and is what we’re trying to do here, except with an easy option to directly buy.

In 2019, Brothers We Stand was awarded the Common Objective Leaders award for “showing leadership in the menswear category by collating the best ethical brands for men in one place. Their firm standard for partner brands allows customers to feel secure in their product choices.” 

Carrying multiple brands allows them to offer a complete range of items, including T shirts, sweatshirts, hoodies, jeans, chinos, jackets, sweatpants, underwear, swimwear, sweaters, polos, button-downs, flannels, flip flops, and accessories. 

Brothers We Stand’s Ethical and Sustainability Practices

  • Materials: Brothers We Stand is obviously bound to sell garments of various fabrics depending on the brand.  Most we looked into were made of natural fibers like GOTS-certified organic cotton and linen.  Some did have small percentages of synthetics so be sure to check the fabric contents for each item.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: “Brothers We Stand was set up in solidarity with the men and women who make our clothes.” 

Adopted from the GOTS Code of Conduct, minimum labor standards include no child or forced labor, no excessive work hours and no discrimination. Employees receive safe and healthy working conditions, the right to collective bargaining, and payment of a living wage. 

All brand partners are required to have systems in place to enforce these standards for all tier-one suppliers. They must “be taking steps, appropriate to the scale of the company, to ensure these standards are met by second and third-tier suppliers.”

Companies can be sustainable without necessarily being certified so Brothers We Stand doesn’t ask for certifications. However, such brands need to communicate their reason for abstaining from certification. All prospective brands must also provide a full supply chain breakdown and sign off on a published summary of it.

  • Green business practices: The first two of Brothers We Stand’s six standards are “designed to please” and “created to last.” This speaks to their commitment to only sell timeless and durable pieces that counteract the notion of Fast Fashion. Committed to “ongoing development”, they are constantly seeking to improve the impact of their company and their partner brands.

  • Inclusivity: Being a collective that sources from other brands, the available sizes differ from one garment to the next. They do try to be inclusive and most garments seem to be available from XS-XXL.

SUSTAINABLE MEN’S CLOTHING BASED IN ASIA / AUSTRALASIA

18. NO NASTIES

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by No Nasties #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
Image by No Nasties

About No Nasties

No Nasties has a hard “NOPE. NAH. NAH-UH.” stance to synthetic petroleum based fabrics, toxic dyes, and unfair or unsafe labor practices.  As a company, they are PETA certified free of any animal-derived fibers (even recycled ones).

They design fair trade mens vegan clothing for the seasons. From winter layers like sweaters, long sleeve shirts, and raglan hoodies to summer ones, like printed t shirts (or as we like to call them,  Nast-TEES) and breezy button-down tops.  Since cotton is so breathable, that makes their garments some of the best fair trade mens summer clothing on the list.

Warm or cold weather, this ethical brand will keep your body (and conscience) cool and comfortable. 

No Nasties’ Ethical and Sustainability Practices

  • Materials: No Nasties use only 100% GOTS-organic, non-GMO, and fair trade cotton in their organic sustainable mens clothing.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: Based in Goa, India, No Nasties was the first Indian clothing brand to get Fair Trade licensed.  All these entities are certified by either Fairtrade International or FLO-CERT. They confine their entire supply chain to India, from growing the cotton to sewing on the final buttons.  This maintains traceability and helps them to honestly answer the question #whomademyclothes?.  

They source their cotton through Chetna Organic, a farmer-owned sustainable farming co-operative that employs over 40,000 local people. They then use one of India’s most environmentally friendly cotton mills, Rajlakshmi Cotton Mills, and manufacture the final garments in facilities nearby.

Their website includes production videos for all products on the product page.

  • Green business practices: If you’re a numbers person, you probably like to see hard facts about the impact of sustainable companies.  No Nasties share the savings in water, driving emissions, and area of land farmed without pesticides for each product. For company-wide impact, see their stat summary or read the full Green Story-compiled impact report

All garments are shipped plastic-free in a reusable cotton drawstring bag inside a recycled cardboard box.

  • Inclusivity: One downside for No Nasties is that mens sizes only run from S-L, in all styles and through XL in some.

  • Community & charitable giving: No Nasties runs a clever and eco-minded donation scheme called “buy one, get one tree”. The program plants a “complimen-tree” through Grow Trees for every regular price product purchased and for every day since they opened in April 2011.  

No Nasties also started a non-profit initiative called Once Upon A Doug to upcycle factory waste fabric into accessories. This program gives working opportunities and financial independence to women from Indian cotton farming communities.

Available:   Made Trade   |   No Nasties

HOW WE CHOSE THESE SUSTAINABLE MENS CLOTHING BRANDS

While the men’s fashion industry may not be quite as extensive as the women’s, it’s filled with just as many problems and is subject to the same fast fashion pitfalls.  When it comes to sustainable mens clothing brands it’s no different, but it’s equally as important for a more sustainable future.

How do we define sustainable mens fashion from just regular old mens fashion?  

After a lot of research and reading,  we compiled a set of sustainable and ethical fashion criteria (please check it out if you haven’t already).  These give us a methodology to assess the social and environmental impact of any fashion category or brand.  Check out some of the other fashion guides we’ve done here

To summarize our criteria: 

  • Materials: Above all else, the best ethical men’s clothing is made with sustainable fibers.  Most of a garment’s impact comes from the material, which is why we’ll break this down further below.

  • Supply chain & labor practices: While material matters the most for environmental impact, this category looks at the social and human rights issues involved with the clothing industry.  Ideally, we want transparency and a demonstration of control and traceability of the supply chains.  

That way, the company actively ensures all entities maintain fair labor practices and pay.

A huge part of this step is looking to brands that have third party auditors, which helps ward off the greenwashing that’s unfortunately prevalent in the industry.

      • B-Corp: By far the best certification because it’s really hard to become a B-corp.  You have to rank super high in over 80 “impact areas” and maintain those standards for yearly audits.  All B-corp annual assessments are public record, too, so companies can’t exactly lie about the results.

      • Fair trade: You’re probably familiar with this one. It’s a concept which assures all materials or products were acquired in exchange for fair labor conditions, compensation, proper training, and reasonable work hours.  

Fair trade also assures against human rights abuses like unsafe work environments, discrimination, harassment, abuse, and child/forced labor. There are a few fair trade bodies that do certification around the world.

      • OEKO-Tex 100: Ensures no harmful chemicals (i.e., colorants, heavy metals, formaldehyde, azo-dyes) are used in manufacturing. This is good for sustainability as well as ethically because workers aren’t in constant contact with toxins.

      • Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS): States that all fabrics are grown and processed “seed to shelf” without the use of chemicals, pesticides, fertilizers, or even machine harvesting.

      • Some other reputable certifications: Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production (WRAP), Business for Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI), Social Accountability International (SA8000), and Fair Wear Foundation.

  • Green business practices: Considers any other ways a brand works to reduce its environmental impact. Things like recycling production materials, textile waste considerations, carbon offsetting, renewable energy, garment recycling programs, and low waste/plastic-free packaging.

  • Inclusivity: When we think of unhealthy body image issues in fashion, we tend to think of women, but men are subject to the same misrepresentation and non body-positive advertising.  We look for brands that offer sizes for everyone (short, tall, large, small, and everything in between) as well as using inclusive models.

  • Community & charitable giving: Not a “must” as some small brands simply don’t have the budget to be both sustainable and charitable yet.  However, it’s great to see larger brands that have the means, reaching out to improve the world beyond the scope of their own business dealings.

Fabrics for Sustainable Mens Fashion 

Again, fabrics are so important.  We really can’t stress that enough.  A sustainable brand HAS to offer garments made of sustainable fabrics, even if not ALL garments are sustainable yet. 

Natural fibers are the first choice, including:

    • Organic cotton: Traditional cotton may look clean but it’s one of the world’s dirtiest fibers.  Organic cotton is so much better (and safer to wear!). It’s grown without chemical pesticides and fertilizers and requires far less water and land area to grow.
    • Organic Hemp/Linen: Similar in eco benefits and final fabric to organic cotton. Sourced from hemp while linen comes from flax plants.
    • TENCEL (Lyocell/Modal): TENCEL is the name of its Austrian producer but it’s become a “Kleenex/tissue” sort of situation.  Technically, the fibers are called Lyocell and Modal, made from the wood pulp of eucalyptus and beech trees, respectively. The process to render fiber from wood is entirely closed-loop and solvent-spinning, so it reuses 99% of the water and solvent over and over.
    • Merino wool: Wool can be tricky.  It’s not vegan and can have some serious animal rights issues at stake. Fortunately, the Responsible Wool Standard (RWS) certification and ZQ Merino label now help us differentiate wool from “happy sheep” versus those that involve animal cruelty.  

As a fabric, wool has tons of benefits and is biodegradable, so we consider it, if it’s sourced ethically. 

Next in the sustainable fabric tier are recycled synthetics (i.e., recycled polyester and recycled nylon). While these aren’t compostable or biodegradable like natural fibers, they aren’t contributing to further plastic waste. They give a second life to waste already in existence that might not have another use. 

For instance, a lot of recycled polyester comes from PET plastic water bottles and recycled nylon (Econyl) comes from discarded fishing nets from the ocean. 

Still, we must be conscious of wearing these fabrics. Use a Guppy Friend when washing them to prevent microplastics from entering the waterway – available from the Patagonia website here

Fabrics to avoid are virgin synthetics, leather, rayon, and bamboo-derived viscose. That last one is tricky because people believe bamboo is a sustainable fiber.  Don’t get us wrong, as a plant and hard material, it is. However, turning into a fiber usually involves so many harmful plasticizing chemicals that cancel out any environmental benefits it may have. 

While it is possible to do it sustainably in a closed-loop manner, it’s hard to tell how companies make it and even we’ve been fooled by the greenwashing that’s so prevalent around bamboo and fashion.

Our rule of thumb is to avoid bamboo unless a company goes out of its way to prove and explain how they’re doing it sustainably. 

FINAL THOUGHTS ON ETHICAL AND SUSTAINABLE MENS CLOTHING

We know that for some of you guys out there, shopping is your worst nightmare… let alone shopping more mindfully!  If that’s you, we hope this list has been helpful and makes the shopping experience less horrific.  

For those that enjoy shopping (including the ladies shopping for their man), we hope we’ve helped to ease your eco-anxieties.

If we succeeded, let us know in the comment section and help us out by sharing this article.  Help your fellow shop-scared men by giving them this cheat sheet of ethical men’s clothing brands to use whenever they need it.

Shopping can be enough torture without all the pressure of working out where to get sustainable mens clothing so we’ve done the hard work for you... Image by Kuyichi Pure Goods #sustainablefashion #mensfashion
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