Paper shell bikini

9 Eco Swimwear Brands to Splash Out On This Summer

Sun’s out! So you want to splash about in your swimmers?

This summer why not forget the fast fashion option? Instead, make an investment for future summers. Get yourself some sustainable swimwear that lasts, and looks as good on you as it is for the planet.

What’s wrong with normal bikinis and one-pieces, you may ask? 

Well, firstly swimwear is generally made from nylon and polyester. These plastics don’t biodegrade. Instead, they break down into tiny bits of micro-plastic—tiny shards less than 5mm long—that find their ways into rivers and oceans where animals and fish ingest them. 

Then there’s the production side of high street swimwear. Fast fashion companies often make their swimsuits as quickly and cheaply as possible, without regard for worker conditions, production runoff, or the quality of the final product. Pilling, anyone?

The good news is that these days, there’s a tonne of eco-conscious brands out there producing quality, sustainable, and stylish water-wear. Many use recycled post-consumer products like fishing nets and plastic bottles to make their swim fabric and include a care guide to minimize microplastic shedding. Most use recycled packaging and responsible factories that minimize pollution in their process and pay their workers fairly. Several offer mix and match options so you can always refresh your beach and poolside look without costing the earth, literally and figuratively.

1. F & Wild London 

A brand new brand using old fishing nets to create bikinis that optimise your curves and their closet life. Founded by slow fashion advocate Njoki Muchuki, the debut Lamu Collection takes inspiration from Muchuki’s homeland of Kenya. Designed to be mixed and matched, choose between the vintage-look, plunging “Alice” swimsuit, the “Dee” bandeau, or the “Kami” halter. Bottoms are either high-waist or curve-flattering. The colours are fabulous too. Take your pick from midnight blue, terracotta, and animal print. Good to know; all swimwear is handmade in a small studio in London and the brand is committed to promoting fair living wages and ethical working standards. 

Get it here. 

2. Lula-Ru

Lula Ru wants the opposite of fast fashion. Instead, they want you to build your own chic and luxurious bikini that is made to last. By mixing and matching various of its 50s-inspired pieces, you can update your look each summer without contributing to society’s throwaway culture. The combination possibilities with Lula Ru swimwear are endless! All fabric is made from Eurojersey. This eco-fabric company monitors every stage of the production cycle to reduce waste and water, energy and chemical usage. Plus, the brand avoids the use of plastic packaging and sends each Lula Ru swimsuit out for delivery in a useful reusable canvas bag. Where’s the beach?

Get it here.

3. Swiminista 

Swiminista founder Andréa grew up recycling way before it was “cool” and takes it beyond her business, organizing regular beach clean-ups with her daughter in their local community. All Swiminista designs are made from luxury recycled fabric that makes use of the millions of tons of post-consumer plastic bottles polluting our oceans. If you’ve spent a lifetime trying to find a swimsuit that is chic, sexy, but as supportive as your bra, you’re in luck. Our favourite collection is the floral collaboration with Christian Lacroix. 

Get it here.

4. Girlfriend Collective

Here come the girls! Well, ethically made swimwear US-based Girlfriend Collective actually. Fun, color-block bikinis and swimsuits created out of recycled fishing nets and industrial waste, what’s not to love? Plus, the GC offer one of the largest size ranges around – we are talking XXS to 6XL – and is made to suit all body shapes. Check out the brand’s range of ethical activewear too. 

Get it here .

5. Paper

Want to do good whilst you look good? All Paper swimmers are made from Econyl. This wunderfibre is 100% regenerated Nylon from recycled fishing nets and any waste products found floating around the ocean. Not only do Paper products provide protection against UV rays, but they’re also colourful, and slightly crazy. Seashell cups anyone?! Plus they have a handy body shape guide ranging from “Playing it Straight” to “Born to Surf” via “Bootylicious”.

Get it here.

6. Fisch 

Fisch came about from the desire to create statement swimwear with a superior fit and timeless design. All made from ocean waste! Plus, the brand partner with Healthy Seas. 1% of sales are donated to the organization which works with skilled divers to tackle the ghost fishing waste phenomenon that has harmed and killed thousands of marine animals.

Get it here.

7. Medina

This brand believes in leading by example. Its eco-conscious luxury swimwear not only looks and feels great but also takes the environment into account. Inclusivity, ahoy! No one-size-fits all here.. Medina’s pieces allow women to discover what shapes and silhouettes are most suitable for them. This season, the brand is working with Restore Coral, a coral restoration initiative based out of Tulum, Mexico.

Get it here.

8. Frankies Bikinis

Transport yourself to the Tropics with these itsy, bitsy, teeny, weeny, polka dot as well as neon, graphic, and block colour bikinis. Founded by Malibu-native, Francesca Aiello, these designs work on the beach as well as paired with your favourite pair of skinnies, and cut-off shorts. As well as its sustainable swimwear, the Los Angeles-based brand has launched a range of sustainable cover-ups which are made with 100% viscose from natural sources of wood pulp.

Get it here. 

9. Wolven

Wolven’s mission is to make sustainability sexy. It’s succeeded with its swimwear range. With multi-coloured and patterned one-pieces and bikinis made from recycled plastic bottles, get ready to wow when you hit the waves. The brand has also partnered with Climate Neutral, purchasing carbon credits to offset its footprint and rainforest conservation and landfill methane-capture. Plus, your purchase will arrive in recycled packaging. 

Get it here.

Find out more about sustainable Turkish beach towels here.

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