Now we’re out of complete lockdown, our lifestyles and leisurely activities can be a little more enthralling than what was once a day of Netflix binging or a procrastination-fuelled day of working from home. We can enjoy things like beach days or swimming pool trips, maybe even set foot abroad this season.
I haven’t purchased new swimwear in going on five years. My trusty black, strappy bikini has served me well time and time again. This year, I decided I wanted to invest in some new swimwear. I wanted something a little more exciting, something more me, and hopefully, something confidence-inspiring to wear to my local beach.
I decided to buy new, but I wanted my purchase to be as sustainable as it could be within my budget. I set out to find what sustainable swimwear options there are on the market and thought I’d share my finds.
If you’re a high street gal, the largest selection of sustainable swimwear I found was on Asos. Asos have a dedicated page of swimwear made from recycled plastic and textile waste. Highlighting three brands: Monki, Asos design, and Weekday means that there are hundreds of swimsuits to browse through and lots of choices, ensuring the purchase you’re making is the right one! I decided to search these brands website individually and discovered a swimsuit I adored from Monki. I came across a nineties inspired, high legged red swimming costume, made from a recycled polyester blend; I knew this would be a timeless piece for me.
Price range: £10-£30
Inspired by the devastation climate change is causing and the destruction of our beaches across the globe, London based swimwear brand, Paper, was created. The brand uses ECONYL for their swimsuits, a 100% regenerated Nylon fibre made from recycled fishing nets and waste products found in the ocean. In combination with this, they use REPREVE yarn, made from old plastic bottles which use less energy and water than alternative fibres.
Paper’s website provides tips on how their customers can sustainably care for their garment post-purchase and a thorough explanation of how their swimwear has a greater impact on our oceans. Their swimwear has built-in sun protection, and when it does reach the end of its lifespan, you can send it back to the brand to be recycled and receive a discount off your next purchase.
Price range: £70-£195
Away That Day
Is an eco-friendly swimwear brand designed in London and made in Bali. They use econyl for their garments and ensure all their packaging is recyclable. Out in Bali, they have a small, family-run factory that they have worked with since the brand’s founding. Their website displays a varied selection of shapes and cuts, and an array of alluring colours and prints.
Price range: £29-£79
Belize’s sustainable focus is less on the origin of the fabric, but on the aftercare of the garment. Belize provides comprehensive advice on how you should be caring for and washing your item post-purchase. They use a small team of specialised factories and craftspeople to ensure your investment is of the highest quality and standard it possibly can be. Belize uses timeless, trendy shapes and prints, ensuring your swimwear never goes out of style.
Price range: £85-£220
House of Sunny
House of Sunny is a brand that’s blown up in recent months, and I’m a big fan of their unique seventies inspired styles. The brand prides themselves on their dedication to the slow fashion movement; only producing two collections a year and working with a small team of creatives who dedicate their time to excellent design work and sourcing the most sustainable materials possible. Their website includes full disclosure on the broader impact their materials and methods of production have on the environment. The brand prioritises zero wastage and describes themselves as on a journey towards sustainability.
Price range: £50-£60
Stay Wild Swim
Stay Wild Swim is another brand that focuses on recycling ocean waste and striving to be as sustainable as possible. They use econyl, sourced from Italy, and design and produce all their garments in London. Their website is fully transparent on the materials they use, where they source them, and the treatment of their employees. Stay Wild Swim uses traditional swimwear cuts and shapes with a calming, nature-inspired colour palette.
Price range: £50-£170
The Davy J ethos surrounds responsibility for creation. Davy J believes we hold responsibility for what we create and the broader impact it has. That’s why Davy J swimsuits are all made from econyl and built to last. Their designs are sturdy, set to survive any harsh waves or deep dives. When your Davy J does eventually reach the end of its life, the brand will once again take responsibility for its creation as you send the garment back to the British based brand to reuse its resources and begin a new, recycled life again.
Price range: £60-£140
Lilliput & Felix
Lilliput & Felix is a unique London based, luxury swimwear brand. With quirky styles and fun, eye-catching prints, its hard to believe these pieces are as environmentally friendly as they are. They have been awarded the Butterfly Mark for social and environmental sustainability, and are members of the Sustainability Alliance supporting sustainable forestry for all eco-friendly packaging. Lilliput & Felix focus on small releases, often selling on preorder. They use econyl materials and ensure all left-over fabrics are repurposed or recycled. They are striving to be fully sustainable in the future.
Price range: £95-£200
Hunza G is a long-established British brand founded in 1984. The brand is well-know for its crinkle-stretch fabric. This fabric and all of Hunza’s garments are sourced and produced across the UK counties. They work on small runs, aiming to reduce consumer and manufacture waste as much as possible. In the aim of reducing their carbon footprint as possible, the Hunza team all work under one roof and employ a minimal paper printing policy.
Price range: £130-£170
Kymina is a London based, mother-daughter owned swimwear brand. Inspired by historical fashion cycles, Kymina mixes the timeless with the trendy. Kymina swimsuits use Vita, a sustainable econyl material known for its strength and resistance. Similar to its competitors, Kymina offers discounts to those that recycle their well-worn swimsuits with them.
These are just a selection of the many sustainable swimwear brands out there at the moment. I’d love to know any of your favourites in the comments!
*Disclaimer, of course, the best way to be sustainable is by buying and consuming less! Make sure your purchases are ones you’re going to wear again and again and don’t buy if you don’t feel the need to!