Activewear retailer Lorna Jane suffered a recent advertorial blunder where the brand referenced COVID-19 when claiming its newly launched “LJ Shield exclusive technology” was capable of protecting wearers against viruses and bacteria.
As a result, I feel compelled to not only share my dislike of misleading corporate advertising and poor ethical practice but to raise student awareness of alternative brands that go the extra mile to both look and do good.
Here are 5 ethical activewear brands worth checking out:
With a focus on sustainability and inclusivity, this young Brisbane-based brand designs, manufactures and distributes its wares from under a single solar-powered roof. The company adopts a slow fashion approach by releasing one collection per season using selected sustainable, toxic-free textiles. In addition to a standard activewear range – which includes a decent selection of tights (some with pockets!), the brand carries curve, mens and maternity lines.
This modest eco-friendly brand is an offshoot of Vege Threads, a 100% Australian manufactured clothing brand featuring organic, sustainable materials and dyes in limited collections. The company states a commitment to transparency, maintaining an ethical supply chain and, as a member of 1% for the Planet, work to donate a percentage of profits back to environmental projects and not-for-profit movements. Their range includes crops, bralettes and leggings which come in a variety of colours.
WE-AR is a Certified B Corporation, meaning the company works to verifiably high standards of transparency, social and environmental practice, and legal accountability in an effort to balance profits and objectives. The business operates from New Zealand while clothing is manufactured in Bali, where a regularly audited Code of Ethics and Environmental Policy, including a living-wage policy, fair and safe working conditions and a preference for eco-friendly materials, is applied. WE-AR’s activewear features simple, organically-made pieces in a variety of earthy tones.
While the Boody activewear line is limited, the brand is worth mentioning for its affordability, which can be difficult to come by when shopping ethically. Known for their sustainable basics, Australian-owned Boody features organically grown bamboo in all of its pieces – a prime option for those prone to eczema or sensitive skin.
A very different kind of activewear; more like streetwear you can be active in rather than the other way around. Born on the streets of Melbourne, this cycling-focused brand fashions truly unique pieces designed to be more durable, ethical and innovative than typical cycling attire whilst leaving a little more to the imagination. While the clothing is pricey and not for the feint-hearted, it’s worth checking out the website for a dose of the alternative street scene that is so Melbourne. Garments are made locally using recycled and Australian milled fabric.
Of course, there are many more ethically driven brands out there; hopefully these have piqued your interest enough to explore the plethora of options growing outside the mainstream. Remember, supporting a brand that places people and planet in line with profit, supports improvement.