Ethically sourced and sustainable fashion doesn't need to be expensive. Even though it is quite easy to succumb to consumer culture and believe in the notion that it is in your best interest to keep up with as many trends as possible, simpler and more tailored pieces are easier to mix and match. In addition, by weaving minimalist clothing pieces into our everyday wardrobes, we have the ability to maximize the cost-per-wear of each piece. It is possible to get luxury quality clothing that doesn’t hurt your pockets.
These sustainable clothing brands that I will be introducing you to are exactly what you have been missing from your minimalist wardrobe. Let’s redirect our conscious spending habits towards clothing that helps us feel good and look good, without breaking the bank. Here's our picks.
Pact is an extremely ethical clothing brand. Pact uses only organic materials and textiles in producing their clothing pieces. Pact is also GOTS certified, which stands for the “Global Organic Textile Standard”. GOTS is a textile production certification that limits the use of toxic bleaches, dyes and other chemical inputs during the production process of textiles. It is internationally recognized as the toughest organic textile standard because it goes far beyond verifying the organic farming process to include every step of manufacturing. To obtain the GOTS “organic” label, a product must:
- Contain at least 95% organic fibre
- Not be treated with bleach, formaldehyde or any other toxic substances
- Be coloured with nontoxic dyes
- Be produced in a mill that enforces strict social and environmental standards, treating their employees and the earth with deep respect. GOTS certification means that our products meet the very highest standards.
Pact is also fair trade certified which means it was made according to rigorous social, environmental, and economic standards. They are extremely eco-friendly. Their products range from adult apparel to children’s apparel. Their prices are quite affordable, and the prices for their apparel range from under $25 to $80. If you are on a quest for ultra-soft basics that are long-lasting, you won't have to search much longer, because Pact has you covered.
The brand sells organic clothing for everyone in the family, toddlers and babies included. They also sell home good items, such as linens and bedding. Not only are the garments GOTS Certified organic and fair trade, but they are also flattering for all and comfortable enough for year-round wear. Since they have an affordable price point, manufacture with high-quality standards, and are environmentally and socially conscious a purchase from Pact will leave you fulfilled and happy.
Kotn is a company that is a certified B Corp. A certified B Corporation is a business that meets the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose. B Corps are accelerating a global culture shift to redefine success in business and build a more inclusive and sustainable economy. Kotn is also strictly organic and ethically source their cotton from Egypt.
They practice safe & fair labour standards which means they refuse to use child labour, they treat their labourers well, and they also fairly compensate employees for their work. They are a company that prides itself on giving back. They work closely with their local NGO, and they stay working to provide every child in their local farming communities along the Nile River with safe, convenient, quality education. Kotn has also prioritized a 2:1 female to male student ratio in an effort to empower young girls to experience equal opportunity. With every purchase, the customer’s orders fund the build-out and operations of school infrastructure, salaries for teachers, laptops, maintenance for the roads that link communities to their schools, books and supplies, science labs, water and electricity, furniture, and technical training for facilitators.
Kotn has a wide range of products, ranging from adult clothing to home bedding. The adult cotton basics prices range from $25 to $80. The bedding prices range from $90 to $155.
Kotn is exclusively known for its clothing being produced from soft and remarkably breathable Egyptian cotton. The cotton they use is the strongest and softest cotton in the world. Kotn strictly uses Giza cotton that originates from the Nile Delta region, an area whose nutrient-rich soil, sunny skies, and consistent 60-70% humidity create the perfect environment for cotton growth. Egyptians refer to this specific cotton as “white gold” for its luxurious fibres.
Kotn creates some of minimalists most favourite wardrobe staples in a fair and safe production environment. They consciously work directly with farmers, the brand pays fair prices for cotton and they assist suppliers in making the switch to organic. They have a wide variety of band tees, tanks, long sleeves, jackets and denim options. They offer affordable basics in earth tones as well as vibrant red colour. The classic white tees Kotn offers are wardrobe must-haves and have designs reminiscent of the nostalgic 90s. Kotn is carefully crafted with quality and comfort in mind. There’s no need to feel guilt when purchasing from Kotn.
Boody is extremely conscious of the way they conduct business and how they source their textiles. The bamboo used to make the yarn for Boody bamboo eco wear is grown in China by Hebei Jigao Chemical Fiber Company. They hold the patent on the process of turning bamboo into yarn. Boody yarn is certified organic by OCIA (The Organic Crop Improvement Association). They don't use pesticides or use fertilizer in the growing process of their bamboo so their fibres are free of toxins.
They pay their workers fair wages. The plants are grown in China in accordance with the international organic standard, meaning each stalk is 100 per cent natural growth and free of any chemical pesticides. So you can expect hypoallergenic and highly breathable fabrics that are soft to the touch and on your skin. Plus, when you purchase their Giving Bracelet, 100 per cent of the profits are donated to Goodbye Malaria and the Relate Organization.
The products range from loungewear to activewear, to underwear, and even babywear. The Prices range from under $25 to $80. Whether it’s a bodysuit or a pair of socks, all of Boody’s pieces are made from organically grown bamboo. Boody believes that beauty lies in simplicity and the importance of consciously keeping their collection minimalist and versatile. Everyday essentials are perhaps the most important pieces in your wardrobe and Boody’s mission is to provide you with modern, high-quality basics that naturally fit who you are.
4. Happy Earth
Happy Earth is a certified B corporation just like the brand I had previously mentioned on this list “Kotn”. Happy Earth is actively fighting against climate change while simultaneously creating a functional lifestyle brand. They put the earth first in everything they do. They only use sustainable textiles and are 100% carbon neutral.
They incorporate zero-waste packaging and utilize organic cotton in their choice of fabrics. With every purchase you can choose which way you would like for your money to be utilized in giving back, you can choose from planting trees, offset emissions or remove a pound of trash from nature. Happy Earth is built around protecting the planet. Every purchase comes with an impact pin so the customers are able to keep track of how much they've made a difference on the planet.
The products range from adult apparel, accessories, activewear, and headwear. The price ranges start from under $25 up to $50. It sources sustainable and organic materials, uses recycled & recyclable packaging, and empowers its customers to give back with every purchase. Each program has humanitarian and environmental benefits, from reducing poverty to providing additional food and income through forest gardens. The apparel includes graphic tees with a minimalistic twist and only use premium fabrics that feel good on your body. When you purchase from Happy Earth, you’re putting people and the planet first “because when it comes to the planet, we actually give a damn.”
Tentree functions through an “earth first” motto. Tentree is a certified B corporation. Tentree firmly believes being sustainable doesn’t mean you have to give up your life or purge your entire lifestyle. They ensure their workers are paid livable wages as well as ensure they are working in safe work areas. gives back to the environment. They utilize sustainable materials like organic cotton, hemp, recycled polyester and TENCEL which is a wood pulp fibre.
They have a wide range of products, including adult apparel, hats, backpacks, kids apparel and accessories needed for an active and environmentally conscious lifestyle. The prices range from $25 to $80. Their apparel has sleek styles with neutral tones and minimal to no graphics. I would say their clothing is functionally chic.
Tentree is rooted in the belief that we as temporary inhabitants of this planet have the responsibility to protect and preserve the world we live in. This earth-first apparel brand celebrates its commitment to our planet with ethically crafted and sustainably designed products, all while planting 10 trees for each item purchased. With a motto of “Buy one, plant ten,” Tentree believes that you don’t have to be an extreme environmentalist in order to make a difference. The brand has so far planted just over 53 million trees around the world and is well on the way to its goal of planting one billion trees by 2030.
6. Rent The Runway Ethics
Rent the Runway is taking a whole new approach when coming to how we use clothing, and challenging our attachment to items. Do you yearn for an eco-friendly alternative to shopping for new items? Give Rent the Runway a try. Rent the Runway is a company promoting an eco-friendly alternative to shopping.
Reusable garment bags are used to minimize as much waste as possible. Responsible dry cleaning is also used. It has even been referred to as the “Netflix for clothing” The product range for Rent the Runway goes from adult apparel to children’s apparel. They have a variety of clothing, ranging from streetwear to even luxury designer. Their prices range from $25 to more than $200 depending on what you decide to rent. This company is a dream for maintaining the minimalist lifestyle, you avoid hoarding clothing, and reject fast fashion by extending the life cycle of clothing through it being in constant circulation. This fashion retail giant earned its gold status (now valued at over $1 billion) in early 2019, and for an industry-changing reason.
With Rent The Runway, you can find that date night dress, the perfect outfits for the office, or even wedding dresses using its massive directory of brands and styles. No guilt necessary when going with Rent the Runway. Garments are delivered straight to you in a reusable bag and they are responsibly dry-cleaned once the items rented have been returned. As people have increasingly become more aware of investing in clothing they frequently wear, a rental option that’s eco-friendly is just the right answer for those special occasion garments.
Minimalism is more than just dressing in a limited wardrobe, it's a movement that rejects excessiveness that comes with consumerism. In this list of brands, their timeless designs, functional versatility, and minimalistic styles will effortlessly keep your wardrobe to a minimum while feeling as if you have a lot to work with. You will easily find that less is more. Investing in quality-made pieces is so important to incorporate in a conscious closet. Some of the brands featured are more affordable than others, however; you will feel confident in knowing your purchase is positively making a difference in the world and is paying the laborers and artisans a fair wage, as well as taking the well being of the environment into consideration throughout the process.
If you're looking for an opportunity to deepen your understanding and knowledge of the practices of sustainable fashion, don't hesitate to take a look at our course "The Sustainable Fashion Industry". Our short and to-the-point, online class covers a wide range of topics spanning from sustainable business models to strategies to lower your carbon footprint. Here's a link to the course, if you use the discount code BLOG20 at checkout you can access a 20% discount. Enjoy!