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15 Best Sustainable Clothing Brands of 2023 + Top Stores

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Ethical fashion purchases grew 500% from 2016 to 2021. Younger generations especially want stylish apparel aligning with their values. This guide details leading sustainable clothing labels making positive impacts worldwide alongside top ethical retailers to explore.

Surging Demand for Sustainable Fashion

The global apparel industry frequently opts for profits over people and planet. Approximately 73% of clothes eventually get landfilled or incinerated per Danish research.

Yet innovative brands prove clothing production can conserve water, use greener materials and ensure living wages. Many conscious consumers happily pay premiums for quality while voting for corporate accountability with their dollars.

Google Trends data showing rising interest in "sustainable clothing" as a search term since 2016

These shifting attitudes created a $120 billion market by 2020.

Apparel is among the top industries Gen Z cares about for positive impact too. Brands embracing circularity and ethics will attract tomorrow‘s biggest spenders.

Below we detail standout sustainable companies leading by example across categories from casualwear to business formal.

15 Leading Sustainable Brands Worldwide

1. Pact – Organic Cotton Basics

Unique Fact: Racial equity & eco-justice funders

Pact adheres to strict ethical and chemical guidelines for all garments made from certified organic cotton, hemp and recycled fabrics.

They calculate and offset carbon emissions from sourcing to shipping. Pact plants one tree per purchase through reforestation non-profits. Racial equity organizations also receive support.

2. Proclaim – Inclusive Lingerie

Unique Fact: Industry leading supplier code of conduct

Proclaim manufactures bras and underwear inclusive of all skin tones using Bluesign safety standard textiles. Their team of 120+ staff is 75% female and 43% BIPOC.

Through the Higg Index, Proclaim maintains detailed visibility into fair worker treatment and ethical practices by suppliers. They ranked among the top 10 sustainable intimates brands by Marie Claire.

3. Fair Indigo – Casual Eco-Wear

Unique Fact: 3rd party certifier for consistency

A standout leader in casual ethical fashion, Fair Indigo adheres to strict criteria on safe dyes, recycled fabrics and transparency. Their timeless designs earn approval by MADE SAFE, Cradle to Cradle and B-Corp auditors.

Fair Indigo‘s carbon neutral supply chain actively measures and offsets emissions. Site visitors can trace regional facility details for 100% of materials.

4. Svala – Luxury Vegan Handbags

Unique Fact: Partners with Amazon forest conservationists

LA based vegan designer label Svala crafts luxury totes and purses from plant leathers and recycled hardware. The brand aligns with Carbonfund to offset emissions by over 227,000 lbs already.

Svala donates 2% of profits to protect an acre of rainforest with every handbag purchase. Their products get featured prominently in sustainable fashion media.

5. Sezane – Timeless French Apparel

Unique Fact: Total lifecycle impact measurement

This renowned French fashion house Sezane produces timeless, quality-first womenswear emphasizing minimal consumption over fast disposal in landfills. Garments use GOTS certified organic textiles from ethical factories.

Sezane partnered top engineering school arts et métiers on a first-of-kind lifecycle analysis quantifying impacts from materials to disposal.

6. ABLE – Fashion Lifting Women from Poverty

Unique Fact: Workers co-own majority of production facilities

ABLE employs women stuck in the cycle of poverty, providing jobs – not traditional charity – so families can build brighter futures. Garment employees earn living wages and hold equity shares for profit sharing.

The brand succeeds via 50+ owned production facilities instead of factories simply contracted for manufacturing. ABLE apparel uses certified organic cottons and ethical processes.

7. Tentree – Eco Apparel & Accessories

Unique Fact: Over 65 million trees planted

Tentree centers sustainability as their first priority for all apparel, accessories and gear. Using hemp, recycled polyester and sustainable Tencel lyocell, their items use certified eco-friendly materials.

To date, funded reforestation partners planted over 65 million trees by linking sales to donations for planting.

8. Patagonia – Pillar of Eco Outdoor Gear

As pioneers building an ethically minded brand long before “sustainability” entered the zeitgeist, Patagonia transformed how companies should interact with people and planet.

They continually push the boundaries on sustainable materials from hemp and cotton to recycled synthetics and groundbreaking natural dyes research. Patagonia couples operations with activist funding for environmental non-profits protecting air, land and water.

9. 337 – Conscious Loungewear

Unique Fact: First carbon positive fashion brand

337 ethically crafts buttery-soft loungewear essentials and intimates using vegan modsalsa, organic cotton, recycled fibers and non-toxic dyes. They became the first carbon positive fashion brand last year.

For every pound of CO2 output across facilities and shipping, 337 provides financing to remove two pounds to reverse climate impacts.

10. Katla – Icelandic Inspired Athleisure

Unique Fact: Advances employee education

Katla designs yoga apparel, sweats and pajamas from natural materials like organic cotton, tencel and linen. Their factories implement eco-initiatives from clean energy to recycling 80% of byproduct waste onsite to drive circularity.

They heavily invest in worker skills training while providing living wages exceeding Indian averages by 500%. Katla also funds schooling for children of employees to secure brighter prospects.

11. Quince – Affordable Luxury Essentials

Unique Fact: Goat herder profit sharing

Quince sustainably crafts Mongolian cashmere sweaters, Italian leather boots and washable silks rivaling $800+ luxury versions at a fraction of standard retail. They shortened supply chains connecting directly with herders and farms.

Quince shares 10% of profits back to cashmere goat herders for grazing restoration supporting heritage nomadic communities. Italian tanneries use vegetable processes while paying employees fairly.

12. Amour Vert – Carbonfree® Apparel

Unique Fact: Partners with fabrics journals for innovation

At Amour Vert, customers find chic staples blending everyday luxury with environmentalism. Their tee shirts alone saved over 15 million gallons of water through sustainable farming practices.

Utilizing modal, tencel, organic cotton and recycled textiles, Amour Vert minimizes the carbon footprint remaining for all operations by purchasing certified carbon credits. The brand works closely alongside academics researching cleaner materials.

13. Girlfriend Collective – Innovators in Eco-Materials

Unique Fact: Uses zero new plastic ever

Girlfriend Collective shook up the athleisure scene by producing high compressiongear entirely from old fishing nets and bottles diverted from landfills. The brand now recycles their own products to avoid new plastic.

Rather than chasing shareholder returns as a public benefit corporation, Girlfriend Collective makes decisions focused on people and environmental welfare over profits. Lululemon founder recently invested given their impressive innovation.

14. Summersalt – Carbon Neutral Swimwear

Unique Fact: 78% less textile waste through pattern efficiency

Summersalt simplifies shopping for flattering swimsuits sustainably made from recycled textiles. Their innovative designs maximize usage of fabric yardage driving remarkable waste reductions.

Production facilities use renewable energy while adhering to ethical auditing standards. Summersalt partners UN Carbonreduction projects to offset supply chain emissions at zero extra customer cost.

15. Christy Dawn – Mindful Organic Fabric Dresses

Unique Fact: Actively works alongside makers

Christy Dawn sustainably creates swoon-worthy dresses and bridalwear in California using deadstock fabrics, renewable energy and zero toxic chemicals. They steward textiles from seed to final product.

Works directly alongside artisans at a livable wage with focus on nurturing creativity. The brand transparently shares behind-the-scenes maker stories and powers workshops supporting marginalized communities.

Top Sustainable Clothing Shops & Online Retailers

1. The Good Trade – Discover Conscious Brands

The Good Trade spotlights fashion creators driving change through inspiring editorials and curated product selections. Shoppers browse understanding issues and voting positively.

2. Thought – Eco Fashion Leader

Thought provides ethical fashion spanning distressed casual to boho chic styles for balanced environmental and social impacts from farm to factory.

3. Reformation – Fun, Trendy Upcycled Looks

Reformation reimagines waste as the new luxury, sparking "cool girl" hype around sustainably made staples from dresses to jeans and shoes. Enjoy of-the-moment styles protecting future moments.

4. Everlane – Ultra Transparent Clothing

Everlane reveals its ethical factories and material sources while minimizing pollution for classically inclined wardrobes. Their cleaned up basics feel good wearing.

5. People Tree – Original Eco + Fair Trade Pioneer

People Tree founded the sustainable movement 30+ years ago. Discover elegant garments handcrafted using traditional skills sustainably lifting developing communities.

6. Eileen Fisher – Silk Minimalist Apparel

Fashion icon Eileen Fisher weaves effortless high end eco-luxury clothing centering ethics and circularity through innovation initiatives like textile tech startups.

Partnering with Sustainable Companies Matters More

When creators collaborate with mission-driven sustainable brands instead of promoting wasteful fast fashion, it catalyzes enormous positive change. Consumers feel inspired learning how purchases protect planet and people.

Platforms seamlessly connecting influencers and causes will transform awareness. The combined power of commerce plus content drives impact together.

Conclusion: Vote with Your Dollars

Sustainable fashion offers stylish apparel kinder to the planet through smart material usage while ensuring maker prosperity. Seeking out purpose-led brands demonstrates your values in action.

Even basic purchasing choices make enormous positive change once multiplied by 7 billion people. Vote with your dollars to encourage industry innovation producing clothing equitably and ecologically.

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