Top 10 sustainable clothing companies: how they differ from the others

Oluwatosin Jegede

We presently live in a world where fashion meets the future – a place where sustainable clothing companies are not just a fleeting trend but a movement shaping our world. Picture this: an industry once shadowed by its contribution to 10% of global pollution is now stepping into the light with brands like Levi’s and Patagonia leading the way. It’s a refreshing turn of events, isn’t it?

These brands, alongside you and me, are at the heart of this change. Together, we’re championing a fashion revolution, one where organic fabrics and recycled materials are the new normal. It’s all about ethical production and renewable energy – because we’re not just buying clothes, we’re investing in our planet.

Let’s embark on a journey to discover the top 10 sustainable clothing companies. They’re not just designing clothes; they’re crafting a better tomorrow.

10. Levi’s

CEO: Charles Bergh

Levi’s, the denim giant, has etched its name not just in fashion but in sustainable clothing. Known for its durable, iconic products, Levi’s champions three critical pillars: climate, consumption, and community. This approach reflects a deep understanding of the significant impact the clothing industry has on our planet.

The brand’s strategy revolves around smart designs and impactful partnerships, focusing on reducing the environmental footprint. Moreover, Levi’s fosters open conversations with its customers, nurturing a global community dedicated to inspiring change and promoting sustainability.

9. Whimsy + Row

Founder: Rachel Temko

At Whimsy + Row, the fusion of fashion and sustainable clothing takes a unique turn. This brand is committed to keeping its carbon footprint minimal. How? By limiting production quantities, ensuring each piece is not just unique but also produced without waste.

The introduction of a waitlisting feature on their website is a strategic move to measure the exact demand, thereby avoiding both overproduction and underproduction. It’s a thoughtful approach, aligning fashion desires with environmental responsibilities.

8. Quince

CEO: Sid Gupta

Quince stands out for integrating sustainability into its core philosophy, viewing it as a standard, not a luxury. This perspective is a testament to the brand’s commitment to sustainable clothing. Quince’s mission is clear: make ethical and eco-friendly clothing accessible to all.

They offer a variety of products – from luxurious Mulberry silk tops to cozy cashmere cardigans and sustainably-sourced leather bags – at affordable prices. This approach not only caters to diverse fashion needs but also ensures that ethical choices are within reach for everyone.

7. Reformation

CEO: Hali Borenstein

At Reformation, sustainability isn’t just a buzzword; it’s the essence of their operations. Embracing the principles of sustainable clothing, they’re committed to reducing waste, water, and energy use. This commitment is bolstered by their green building infrastructure. Their unique tool, RefScale, meticulously tracks the carbon and water footprint of each product, embodying transparency and accountability.

Reformation’s dedication extends to keeping consumers informed, providing quarterly reports on their environmental impact, and ensuring that every fashion choice made is a step towards a greener planet.

6. Pact

CEO and Co-Founder: Brendan Synnott

Pact lives and breathes sustainability, ranking it high on the list of sustainable clothing companies in the world. Since 2002, the company has been a forerunner in the circular economy, leading movements that redefine sustainable packaging.

Their approach involves using recyclable and reusable solutions, reflecting a profound commitment to impacting stakeholders and communities positively. Pact’s philosophy is clear: every action counts and every sustainable choice makes a difference.

5. People Tree

CEO: Safia Minney

People Tree occupies the fifth position in the ranking of sustainable clothing companies. People Tree, a pioneer in sustainable fashion since 1991, has consistently placed the environment at the forefront. This brand exemplifies the core values of sustainable clothing, ensuring that every product adheres to the highest ethical and environmental standards throughout its lifecycle. For over three decades, People Tree has remained unwavering in its mission, proving that sustainability and fashion can coexist beautifully.

Read also: What is circular fashion and why is it the future of the sustainable clothing industry

4. Amour Vert

CEO: Laurie Etheridge

Understanding that about 60% of a garment’s environmental impact occurs during fiber and fabric manufacturing, Amour Vert takes a proactive approach. They engage directly with mills to create sustainable and durable fabrics. Their commitment to sustainable clothing begins at the very start – selecting eco-friendly, traceable, and sustainable raw materials.

This commitment runs deep, influencing every step of the manufacturing process. Amour Vert isn’t just creating fashion; they’re crafting a legacy of sustainability.

3. Adidas

CEO: Bjørn Gulden

Adidas is sprinting ahead in the race for sustainable clothing with its impressive sustainability initiatives. By 2024, the brand plans to phase out virgin polyester, replacing it with recycled alternatives. Since 2015, their partnership with ‘Parley for the Oceans’ has been pivotal, utilizing ‘Parley Ocean Plastic’ as a substitute for virgin polyester.

This collaboration bore fruit in 2022, with Adidas producing nearly 27 million pairs of shoes using this innovative material. Adidas is not just crafting shoes; they’re weaving a narrative of responsibility and environmental stewardship.

2. Tentree

CEO and Co-Founder: Derrick Emsley

For tentree, sustainability is more than a concept; it’s their heartbeat. Achieving carbon neutrality in 2020 was just the beginning of their journey in sustainable clothing. Beyond claiming sustainability, tentree embodies it, sharing their reforestation efforts in Indonesia and their commitment to sourcing sustainable cotton.

As a certified B Corp, they maintain the highest standards for both people and the planet. Their pledge is profound: for every item sold, 10 trees are planted, aiming for a billion trees by 2030. With over 70 million trees already rooted, tentree’s mission is flourishing, reflected in their diverse, eco-friendly clothing range.

1. Patagonia

CEO: Ryan Gellert

Patagonia ranks number one on the list of sustainable clothing companies worldwide. It is renowned for its progressive and innovative approach. The company focuses on creating durable, high-quality products. Patagonia’s range, from moisture-wicking tees to water-repellent hiking shorts, is designed for performance and minimal environmental impact.

With 98% of their materials being recycled and a transparent approach to environmental issues, Patagonia’s dedication to the planet’s wellbeing is unwavering. Their use of FairTrade Certified, organic cotton, and recycled materials makes them the top choice for those who value durability, functionality, and eco-consciousness in their outdoor gear.

Read also: The cost of fast fashion industry: the human, social and economic impact

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