SUSTAINABLE MEN’S FASHION BRANDS TO KNOW IN 2020
Post-Covid 19, the clothing industry and the way in which we consume fashion is going through a radical shift. A global pandemic can do wonders for one’s perspective; the absence of human activity has resulted in fish coming back to the canals of Venice, dolphins in the Thames – the impact we have on the planet has never been clearer. So, as we move forward in to a more conscious age, how can we be more ethical in our purchases whilst remaining stylish? These five brands should give you a head start:
Handmade in Italy, Milanese minimalists YATAY offer Peta Approved, 100% vegan sneakers. Specialising in clean lines and a slick Scandi approach to design, think ‘Common Projects with a conscience.’ They differ to other vegan options on the market in that their leathers are made mostly of cereals, which is 100% biodegradable. The small amount of recycled ocean plastic used in the soles can be sent back to Yatay to be put back into the production process, meaning that 0% of the shoes go to landfill. As if that wasn’t lovely enough, Yatay also pledge to plant one tree for every pair of shoes purchased. You get a unique code upon purchase and can monitor the trees growth and how much co2 you’ve offset.
The clue is in the name: born as the antithesis to fast disposable fashion, iconic Venetian brand Slowear do not bow to the pressure of ‘drop’ culture, instead committing to timeless pieces manufactured to a high standard that will last for years. Manufactured in Venice and best known for their iconic ‘Incotex’ trousers, Slowear also offer high end smart casual separates from Montedero and a luxury Zanone knitwear line. Behind the scenes, Slowear also invest in clean industry and encourage the use of renewable sources in their HQ and manufacturing processes, with not a piece of single use plastic in sight.
New kids on block, Potato Head launched at the end of last year by the uber-cool Bali eco-hotel of the same name, famed for its ties to high-profile DJs such as Honey Dijon and throwing legendary beach club parties. Every Potato Head shirt is crafted from Tencel, a natural material made from the pulp of fast-growing Eucalyptus trees. The fibre is fully biodegradable and anti-bacterial, using 80% less water than cotton and is harvested without the use of pesticides or insecticides. After a recent collaboration with global superstar Peggy Gou, they have launched a new range of vibrant, graphic printed shirts for the summer with eco-credentials that will make you feel as good inside as they look on your back – so even if Glasto is a write-off this year, Potato Head will bring a bit of that festival feeling to your back garden. Warm lager not included.
Lightweight summer pieces with a bohemian bent. Founded in 2013, London’s East End label Story Mfg. has a strong focus on sustainability, prioritising slow-moving design processes and quality fabrics that are vegan and built to last. Their casual tees, bowling shirts and sweats in organic fibres are lovingly customised with natural dyes, made from leaves, bark, roots and fruit.
Famously one of the most damaging to the planet, the denim industry has long favoured aesthetic over anything else. Not Nudie Jeans. Since 2001 an astute awareness of environmental practices has been the DNA of their brand. “Wear, tear and repair” is their mindset – to avoid their jeans ending up in landfill, they encourage customers to take old pairs to their local Nudie Jeans repair shop to either repair them or offer a 20% discount on a new pair and ensure that they are disposed of properly. Top tip: try their Japanese dry selvage for a look that will improve over the years/months. Any denim head worth their salt will tell you: NEVER machine wash. If they get a little funky, stick them in the freezer overnight to kill bacteria.