Sustainable underwear: the ultimate guide to shopping for conscious intimates

Shopping for sustainable underwear can be tricky, and rather daunting, especially when there’s so many ‘eco-conscious’ brands emerging in a time of fashion crisis. 

There’s now an influx of businesses who have adopted sustainability buzz-words as their second language, bombarding you with information with no real substance behind it. If these old brands with multi-million revenue really cared, wouldn’t they have been making sustainable choices before it was cool?

For returning eco-conscious shoppers, or those making the initial switch to sustainable underwear, the world of sustainable shopping can be a bit overwhelming.

But fear not, we’ve rounded up our 4 top tips and tricks for navigating the world of sustainable underwear.

1. Look out for the materials used

One of the key indicators of a sustainable underwear brand lies within the materials that they use. 

If you see any utterances of the words ‘Polyester’, ‘Acrylic’ or ‘Nylon’, however fluffed-up the marketing of these brands may be, if they’re using these materials, they’re definitely not sustainable.

You should be able to find details about the materials sustainable underwear brands use within the product descriptions on their website. 

At CAVALIER, we can’t stop talking about the MicroModal we use in our underwear. Not only is it luxuriously soft, but it is a lot kinder to the environment compared to traditional cotton.

The fabrics sustainable brands use should be something to shout about, so listen out for those making a little less noise. 

2. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is

Have you come across a pair of sustainably sourced, 100% natural fibre boxers, at just a fraction of the price of your Calvins? 

Yeah, we hate to break it to you, but they’re probably telling lies. 

Sustainable underwear is inherently priced higher than your conventional intimates as they reflect the level of care that goes into creating each garment, from the sustainable sourcing of materials, to ensuring the fair wages of workers, to the distribution process that ultimately allows your items to arrive safely at your front door. 

If they’re suspiciously cheaper compared to other sustainable underwear options of the same kind, it’s unlikely that their workers will be receiving a fair wage, or their supply chain is as ethical as they make out. 

3. Opt for quality, not quantity

Whilst the feeling of getting enough pairs of cheap underwear to supply every day for a couple of weeks  might be satisfying initially, try and think about this more long-term. 

You’ll probably find that whilst those pairs will see you through every day for around four weeks, purchasing just half the amount of good quality, sustainable underwear would last you much longer.

It’s important to consider that although sustainable underwear may have a higher price point compared to cheaper alternatives, the price accounts for the ethical and sustainable practises that go into creating each garment. 

You’re making an investment not just in a higher quality product for yourself, but in a more sustainable future for others.

4. Ask questions

Can’t see the manufacturing information on a sustainable underwear brand’s website? Ask them why.

Where does the fabric come from?

Who made the garments and how were they treated? 

What are they doing to reduce their carbon footprint?

The only way we can drive real change is through asking questions and calling out sustainable underwear brands who fail to deliver on their promises.

It’s common practise for sustainable underwear brands to make the practises they employ within their supply chain public, as usually, that’s what makes them sustainable in the first place. 

If they don’t, it may mean that there’s more to the story than meets the eye

If you have any questions about CAVALIER and our sustainability practises, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. We’re always happy to discuss the work we do, and encourage other brands to approach it more as an open conversation.


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