Looking for sustainable swimwear brands that are actually fashionable and ethical? Look no farther. We’ve compiled the top bands for you.
And, in case you’re wondering how these eco-friendly bathing suits can help the environment… we’ve classified all the ethical benefits in one simple guide.
Choosing Eco-Friendly Swimwear and Sustainable Bathing Suits
First up, what is sustainable swimwear anyway? Why are they considered ‘better’ than regular swimwear attire?
Luckily, we’ve made a quick list of planet-conscious swimwear brands below and we’ve highlighted just what makes them fashionable too. So read on and dive in!
Top 12 Sustainable Swimwear Brands
The Best Looking Sustainable Swimwear and Organic Bathing Suits (100% Ethical): Summersalt
Gorgeous styles and affordable prices.
Best One-Piece Sustainable Swimwear Options with Solid Colors: Londre
Total minimalism made from recycled plastic bottles.
Best One-Piece Organic Swimwear with Great Shape Retention: OOKIOH
Understated beauty that lasts.
Best Eco-Friendly Bikinis & Sustainable Swimwear Passionate Prints: Patagonia
Fun and flirty prints from a trusted eco-friendly swimwear brand.
Best Sustainable Bikini Brand that Also Makes an Equality Stand: Reformation
With high priority on minority management staffing, this look is beautiful and making a difference.
Best Organic Swimwear Designs Made with Sustainable Materials: DOS Swim
Using deadstock fabric to reduce waste and combining it with double-take looks.
Best Crocheted Bikini (Two-Piece): Seeker of Sunshine
Classic beauty in sustainable swimwear.
Best Recycled Nylon and Plastics: Mara Hoffman
Reducing plastic waste with figure-friendly style.
Best Deadstock and Biodegradable Materials: SNRKLBR Swimwear
Timeless looks without the eco-cost of new materials.
Best Deadstock Fabric Ethical Swimwear Known for ‘Upcycling’: Anekdot
Sexy styles and form fitting beauty.
Best Ethical Swimwear Made With Hemp: Natasha Tonic
Sustainable hemp and organic cotton create a fashion masterpiece.
Best Vegan Swimwear Option: Immaculate Vegan
All vegan materials and clean, beautiful lines.
1. Summersalt: The Best Looking Sustainable Swimwear Choices and Organic Bathing Suits (100% Ethical)
Looking for one-piece sustainable bathing suits? We don’t blame you. It’s still one of the most purchased types of swimwear apparel out there thanks to the comfort and ‘ultimate coverage’ it offers.
But don’t get stuck on just one look or style. There’s A LOT of variety on offer today such as one-of-a-kind cutouts, plunging necklines, asymmetric designs, bold prints, and more.
Summersalt is well-known for its use of bold colors, solid lines, and body-flattering designs. And it’s not by chance that they’re known for comfortable swimwear. The company analyzed more than 1.5 million(!) body measurements from 10,000 women to come up with the perfect fit that makes you look “stunning from every angle.”
Summersalt is also known for its stylish cover-up designs that are never out of season. It’s really like donning a runway outfit on the beach!
2The Fishnet Sarong
2. Londre: One-Piece Sustainable Swimwear Options With Solid Colors
Londre is another vegan swimwear brand known for their one-piece designs. Founded by Ainsley Rose and Hannah Todd, their goal is to create stunningly sexy swimwear with the lowest negative impact on the planet.
3The Minimalist (Available in various colors)
3. OOKIOH One-Piece Organic Swimwear With Great Shape Retention
OOKIOH is another ethical swimwear brand known for their one-piece swimwear collection. What’s different about OOKIOH too is that they swear some of their one-piece items can double as bodysuits every day of the week too.
The fabric they use for their swimwear is obtained from an Italian mill, which takes ocean waste (i.e., marine trash such as cast-off fishing nets) and deadstock (e.g., cut-off trimmings, textile leftovers, etc.) and transform these into swimwear fabric ready for production.41
4Tokyo One Piece
4. Patagonia: Eco-Friendly Bikinis: Sustainable Swimwear Passionate Prints and Styles of 2021
Ah yes, what says summer more than hot prints? And Patagonia, undoubtedly one of the leading eco-friendly brands out there today, caters to this in their swimwear line too.
5Women's Glassy Dawn Tankini (Available in various print designs and colors)
5. Reformation: Sustainable Bikini Brand That Also Makes an Equality Stand
Another eco-friendly bikini brand is Reformation. In addition to making a planet-friendly stand by using only sustainable materials in their production, they’re also making an equality stand.39 More than 75% of their management team is comprised of women or individuals from minority groups.
6Harbor Longline Bikini Top & Bottom (Sold separately)
6. DOS Swim: Gorgeous Organic Swimwear Designs Made With Sustainable Materials
What are ‘sustainable materials’? Simply put, these are resources that don’t strain or tax the environment during their manufacture or disposal. And one such brand is DOS Swim.
Founded just in 2019, the pair behind DOS Swim – Shay Johnson and Paula Hess – started their company because they wanted swimwear that “actually fit right, celebrated their bodies, made them feel confident and expressed their love for color”.
7. Seeker of Sunshine: Best Crocheted Two-Piece and Classic Beauty
Is there anything else that shouts ‘child of nature’ more than crochet swimwear garments?48 If you want to evoke the natural, ethereal look as you sashay down the beach, then consider the vegan swimwear brand Seeker of Sunshine.
As they say, Seeker of Sunshine designs are made ‘with the gypsy in mind who loves to stay clad in her bikini from sun up to sun down’. All items are handcrafted from Brazil and as you can see in the pics below, ‘hot’ is the word that comes to mind when you wear any of their designs.
8Delilah Top - Cream (Available also in black)
8. Mara Hoffman: Recycled Nylon and Plastics: Reusing Never Looked So Good
One of the intentions of sustainable swimwear brands is to recycle non-biodegradable materials such as nylon and plastics. To date, Econyl® and Repreve® are the leading eco fabric types.
Econyl® is made from recycled nylon from such items as thrown-out fishing nets, cast-off carpet flooring, industrial plastic, and fabric leftovers. Repreve®, on the other hand, is polyester produced from recycled PET plastic bottles.
The above definitions may not sound ‘sexy’ but I’m sure you’ll change your mind once you see the following ethical swimwear by Mara Hoffman.
Mara Hoffman swimwear is known for its fun, and bright-colored printed swimsuits and high-waisted cuts. This ethical swimwear brand is also known for its Extended Sizes.
9Isolde One Piece (Available in other colors)
9. SNRKLBR Swimwear Deadstock and Biodegradable Materials: Innovative Style
Deadstock quite literally means that – fabric stock that’s considered ‘dead’ because they will no longer be used. They can be composed of fabric that’s out of season so the manufacturer doesn’t want to use them anymore, fabric scraps from cuttings, or simply forgotten bolts of fabric.
If that doesn’t sound thrilling, the following sustainable swimwear brand – SNRKLBR Swimwear – will show you that breathing life into deadstock and biodegradable fabric can produce the most eye-catching organic bathing suits for you this summer.
10Sweetheart One Piece - Deadstock Orange Burgundy Gingham (RTS)
10. Anekdot: Deadstock Fabric Ethical Swimwear Known for ‘Upcycling’
Anekdot is another eco-friendly swimwear worth mentioning for its use of deadstock fabric. They are known for their ultra-comfortable wrap-style swimwear apparel. They also want to state that their brand is not about ‘recycling’, but ‘upcycling’.
Planet-conscious and savvy; what more do you want?
11Lin + Bow-back
11. Natasha Tonic: Ethical Swimwear Made With Hemp
Hemp is one of the most organic natural fabrics.1 Apart from growing naturally without pesticides, hemp is anti-microbial, UV resistant, and extremely long-lasting.43 So basically, while ‘regular’ bathing suit manufacturers douse their swimwear with harsh chemicals to achieve the same qualities – hemp already has all of these naturally!
Natasha Tonic is one organic swimwear brand that focuses on hemp as a swimsuit material, not just for the above eco qualities but because hemp is light-weight, and thus perfect for traveling.
12Side Cut Yin & Yang Swimsuit
12. Immaculate Vegan: Vegan Swimwear Option
Since being ‘vegan’ means the practice of refraining from the use of animal products,45 you’ll likely gravitate to the many brands under Immaculate Vegan. This site showcases just about any item that does not use animal resources in the manufacturer of their products – including swimwear!
13Eden (Top and Bottom sold separately)
How To Select Your Next Sustainable Swimwear Apparel
So, great! You’ve taken a look at the most gorgeous ethical swimwear in the market today but HOW do you choose which one is the best when it comes to sustainability? First, check out your personal emissions with an ecological footprint calculator… and then look over a few things you may want to consider.
- Actual materials used in the production of their ethical swimwear line. At the moment, Econyl®2 and Repreve3 are the most known swimwear fabrics. EcoRib and Bio-Nylon follow suit. So you’ll often find these materials cited in many of the organic swimwear brands listed above.
However, do note that there are vast differences in the percentages of ethical materials used. For example, one may use 100% recycled cotton fabric, while another may use a combination of 70% recycled polyester and spandex.
Of course, every step of purchasing anything environmental-friendly is a BIG help. We’re just mentioning this so that you’re aware as it may impact the price and features you see.
- Production processes applied during the manufacture of organic swimwear. Eco-friendly bathing suit manufacturers apply earth-friendly production processes in various ways. For instance, some may donate a percentage of their profits to sustainable organizations in addition to applying in-house ‘green’ production practices.40
Another may opt for a zero non-toxic dye policy. And while one company may want to focus on recycling plastics, another may want to steer away from any type of plastic whatsoever. If you’re passionate about something specific, you may want to dive into the behind-the-scenes processes of each organic swimwear brand deeper.
- Fashion variety! Okay, being an eco-minded gal is one thing but you want to look good!
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with an eco-friendly swimwear brand that focuses on only one type of swimsuit (e.g., one-piece bathing suits). But even in that one realm, there are PLENTY of fashion trends on offer today.
Think color variety, cut style diversity, fabric range, era styles, size availability, and so on.
Finding the Perfect Swimsuit Fit
We get it. Finding the perfect sustainable swimwear can be complicated and overwhelming.
So here’s our first important tip – shift your mindset. Instead of focusing on how you’d look in eco-friendly bikinis, focus on this instead – which swimwear represents ME and my body the best? And with that in mind, here are more tips for you as you go down the aisle of sustainable bathing suits this year.
Figure Out Your Body Type
- Pear shape. Balance this shape by choosing swimwear with a few embellishments in the chest area such as ruffles or fancy and intricate lacing. You can go for padded cups too for more oomph in the chest area.
- Hourglass shape. One-piece eco-friendly swimwear is the best for this body type as it accentuates an already balanced shape. Want to emphasize your shape even more? Rock a two-piece bikini.
- Curvy, plus-size. Swimwear apparel that applies color blocking works well for this body type. Belted styles and the ‘wrap look’ around the waist will work great too.
- Slim, athletic. Prints and patterned styles work well with this body shape. Cut-out detailing around the waist would work well too.
- Long, tall. High-cut organic swimwear works great. One-piece bathing suits with deep necklines work well too
- Small, petite. One-piece swimwear is great for this type of body type. Go for solid colors as this provides a ‘longer’ look.
What’s Your ‘Less Flattering’ Area?
Let’s be completely honest. Even the most ‘I’m very comfortable in my body’ gal wants to tone down their less flattering areas. After all, no one’s perfect. So here’s a quick rundown of tips for you.
- Small breasts. Padded cups ladies! Under-wiring can also help a lot with pushing the ‘ladies’ up and forward.
- Big tummy. Emphasize the top, and the bottom. So this means looking for designs that may have ruffles at the top, and then dark, solid colors at the bottom. High-waisted organic bathing suits also work well, as well as wrap designs.
- Cellulite. Up to 98% of women have cellulite.4 So don’t ever let this get in the way of strutting confidently down the shores of a beach. Still, if you want to cover up at times, there’s the sarong for such a purpose. There are even ‘beach dresses’ and ‘beach skirts’ now that you can easily put over your bathing suit or bikini.
Nothing makes a woman look sexier than this – confidence.44 Comfort plays a BIG role in being confident. So when shopping for sustainable bathing suits, yes, try it on! If it looks good on you and you feel good in it – you’ve found a winner.
What’s Your Color Personality?
Don’t go with what’s this season’s color – or any season for that matter – when it’s a shade that does not suit you. Some people like big, bold, ‘I’m making a statement here’ colors. Others prefer subdued, quietly confident shades.
Whatever it is – use it as s guide when shopping for your next sustainable swimwear.
This is not to say that you shouldn’t be adventurous and go out of your comfort zone with other types of colors. You can do that too!
What Do You Enjoy Doing Most in Your Vegan Swimwear?
Are you the active type or are you the ‘I want to read a book and sip a margarita’ type when on the beach? Consider your activity level when on the hunt for your next organic bathing suit.
With all these tips, you’re bound to find the eco-friendly swimwear of your dreams soon. But how do you take care of them to ensure that they last for a good length of time?
Sustainable Swimwear – Fabric Care Tips
As with any garment, how you care for your ethical swimwear apparel depends on the fabric used. In general though, follow these tips below.
- Hand wash only. As a general rule, ANY type of swimwear apparel should only be hand washed using cold, soapy water. And don’t be rough with the hand washing and rinsing either, especially if your bathing suit has fine details that can easily snag. And mind your nails too. You don’t want any snagging that can ruin your bathing suit – or your nails!
- Dry flat. After washing, wrap up your bathing suit or bikini in a towel. Roll the towel and slowly use it to wring the water out. Lay your swimming clothes flat out to dry in a shaded place. You don’t want the sun to give your organic swimwear the ‘faded look’, do you?
- Don’t bundle and forget it. Ok, we’re not always in the mood for laundry. However, if you don’t intend to properly wash your sustainable bathing suit right away, at least give it a quick rinse and lay it out to dry. Don’t bundle it up in your towel and forget it in your beach bag. Why? One word ladies – MOLD.
- Give your swimming clothes a break now and then. We understand. You’re IN LOVE with your eco-friendly bikinis and want to wear them over and over. Year after year. However, did you know that bathing suits need some ‘time out’ too to regain their shape? Interchange your swimming garments each summer to extend their use.
Diving Into a Healthier Planet With Sustainable Swimwear
So, are you ready to give sustainable bathing suits a try? You can boost your help to the planet by also purchasing tree planting offsets from one of the best carbon offset providers that reduce your overall footprint.
Organic swimwear used to be viewed as less aesthetically pleasing, and lacking in variety, and the motivation to buy was purely from an environmentally-conscious standpoint. As you can see from the above samples – this is no longer the case!
Sustainable swimwear is good for the planet, and with the right look, you’ll be sure to show off your perfect, beautiful style.
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5Image Source: Summersalt, <https://www.summersalt.com/products/sidestroke-seaweed-seaglass-white-sand>
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24Image Source: Seeker of Sunshine, <https://www.seekerofsunshine.com/products/gone-bananas-black-shorts>
25Image Source: Seeker of Sunshine, <https://www.seekerofsunshine.com/products/gone-bananas-black-shorts>
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34Image Source: Anekdot, <https://anekdotboutique.com/product/black-sheer-lunaronepiece/>
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