6 Ethical & Sustainable Denim Brands

A while ago I met the founder of Outland Denim, a sustainable and ethical Australian denim brand. She shared her thoughts on denim, a material that isn’t very sustainable, normally. Since then, I’ve been hooked on the idea of having just a few quality denim items that I actually love and that will last a lifetime. Who needs to own 10 pairs of cheap jeans when none of them are truly perfect? 

In a way, buying ethical and sustainable jeans is like establishing a deep friendship – it might take a while to find the right pair, but once you have found it, it will last a lifetime.

Finding ethical & sustainable denim

But finding ethical and sustainable denim brands can be a little tough. In this blog post I want to share with you some of the sustainable denim brands I know. 

They are a little bit pricier than fast fashion brands. However, their quality is outstanding. And by buying from brands that care for the environment and the people who made the clothes, you can vote for a better world. How cool is that?!

The co-founder of Outland Denim spoke at a Sustainable Fashion Forum I visite. She told the audience the story of how she and her husband decided to help young girls, who have been exploited. They give their seamstresses the chance to learn, grow and to find their own voice and path in life.

Outland Denim sources all their materials from suppliers who share the same mission – to do business in a way that makes sense for today, tomorrow and future generations.

Price: $150 – $230 AUD (90 – 140 €)

MUD Jeans’ denim consists of up to 40% post-consumer recycled cotton. The rest is organic cotton. It is truly sustainable. 

In 2013, MUD Jeans reached a new level of sustainability, when the brand introduced a lease system. The system makes sure that all garments are recycled. Repairs are for free and after a year, the customer has the chance to swap their pair of jeans for a new one.

A system like this could be the secret to making fashion more sustainable. 

Price: 120 – 130 €

Armed Angels‘ denim range is made from organic, allergen-free and non-toxic cotton. For their stretchy models TENCEL™ Lyocell is used. The material is treated with a non-toxic organic solvent and produced in a circular sustainable manufacturing process.

TENCEL™ Lyocell is a miracle material. It helps your body regulate temperature, so it’s harder for bacteria to grow. This also means that you don’t have to wash the jeans as often. Oh, and the material is extremely soft, which is perfect for sensitive skin. 

All patches are also made from vegan leather. Could it get any more ethical?

Price: 80 – 110 €

With every pair of Justice Denim jeans you buy, you also buy four weeks of education for a child rescued from slavery. Of course the entire production line is slavery-free as well.

Justice Denim sources the majority of material for their jeans from a premium, ethical denim factory in Turkey, that is accredited with the Bluesign Certificate. This is a certificate for environmental health and production safety.

All of the scrap denim is donated to quilters who recycle them, so no material is wasted. 

Price: around $240 AUD ( = 150€)

Nudie Jeans‘ denim is made from 100% sustainable organic cotton. The production process is also 100% transparent and ethical. 

But that’s not everything. Nudie Jeans strives for even more sustainability by offering free repair service for all denim items. Yes, a pair of their jeans is more expensive than the average pair of jeans. But you’re guaranteed a clothing item and a service that will in combination last you a lifetime. So, in the longterm, it is actually cheaper.

If you do decide to get rid of a piece of clothing, Nudie Jeans will recycle it or resell it. 

Price: 185 – 210 USD (approximately 170 – 190 €)

Kuyichi uses 100% organic pesticide-free cotton.

At Kuyichi you can also find PCRD, which stands for Post-Consumer Recycled Denim. This means that the cotton has already had a full life. With each pair of jeans made from PCRD, Kuyichi makes sure that fewer clothes end up in landfill. It also ensures that fewer chemicals and less water is used in comparison to a brand-new pair of jeans. 

In some jeans models, polyester is used. For that, Kuyichi uses recycled plastic bottles.

Price: 100 – 120 €

While you are here, feel free to check out my post about ethical and sustainable T-Shirts with a bold message.

I hope this was useful for you if you were looking for a new sustainable and ethical pair of jeans. Or, if you don’t need any new denim at the moment, I hope these brands and their missions inspired you to pick a more sustainable and ethical option next time you need a new pair of jeans. 

Do you know any other sustainable and ethical denim brands I should know of? Feel free to comment down below or message me on Instagram.

Thanks for reading!

Pauline xx

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