Stay Informed, Stay Inspired: Subscribe to Our Good-News-Eco Newsletter + Unlock a Free E-book!

11 Brands You Didn’t Know Were Supporting Ethical Male Fashion

Written by: Hendrik

Category: Lifestyle, Fashion

Updated on:


The Rise of sustainable men’s clothing brands

There’s no denying that the fashion business has a lot of room to improve in being more environmentally responsible. From textile manufacturing to the disposal of clothes, the industry is guilty of some significant sustainability offenses.

However, we’ve seen a shift in how consumers view fashion over the past few years. There’s a growing demand for more sustainable and ethical clothing, and brands are starting to notice.

One of the areas where we’re seeing the most growth is sustainable men’s clothing. More and more brands are focusing on creating high-quality, affordable, ethical male fashion, sustainable menswear that doesn’t damage the environment – and the results are pretty impressive.

There are several creative methods to reduce the carbon footprint generated by the fast fashion industry, ranging from recycled polyester to post-consumer recycled plastic bottles. We’ll go over a few of them here.

Does fair trade apply to clothes?

Clothing is one of the most commonly traded items globally, and many people want to know if fair trade practices are used in the production of their clothes.

The answer is a bit complicated, as different organizations have different definitions for what counts as “fair trade.”

In general, though, fair trade practices aim to ensure that workers are treated fairly and receive a livable wage, that environmentally sustainable materials are used, and that no child labor is involved in the production process.

Some organizations certify clothes as being made with fair trade practices, so look out for those labels when shopping for eco-friendly and recycled clothing.


What advantages come with buying ethical male Fashion?

There are several reasons to shop ethically for men’s clothing. Here are a few of the most important benefits:

Sustainable practices:

Buying ethical clothing brands helps to support sustainable practices, which is crucial for the future of our planet. By shopping ethically, you can ensure that the clothes you wear are made in a way that doesn’t damage the environment.

Check out: 13 Eco friendly underwear brands for the eco-conscious men

Environmental Impact:

The industry has a substantial environmental impact, and sustainable practices can help to mitigate that. The production of synthetic fabrics, for example, can release harmful chemicals into the atmosphere and the ocean.

Less toxic chemicals are used in making your clothes, reducing the carbon emissions created in the manufacturing process.

When washing your clothes, do you use eco-friendly plastic-free detergent?

Try these:

Tru Earth Laundry Detergent Review

Earth Breeze Eco Detergent Sheets Laundry Friendly Or Not? (40% discount from Zerowasteman)

Animal welfare:

Many ethical men’s clothing brands use sustainable materials that don’t harm animals. Leather, for example, is often sourced from cows that have been raised under inhumane conditions. By shopping ethically, you can help to reduce the amount of animal cruelty in the industry.

Don’t be fooled by vegan leather unless made with fruit pulp. It can often be plastic which isn’t better than leather.

Social responsibility:

The people who make our clothes are often mistreated, and buying ethical fashion helps to improve their working conditions. 

Many ethical brands are made in factories with fair working conditions and pay their employees fair wages.

  • In Sri Lanka, the average wage is $197 per month, yet workers say they need at least $479 to support their families. Defining fair wages is different from country to country and requires a lot of research. But you can make a difference by the way you shop.


Ethical brands often prioritize quality over quantity, which means you can find well-made clothes that will last.

How to shop ethically for men’s clothing

When shopping for ethical men’s clothing, there are a few things to consider.

  • Look for certified organic cotton or sustainable materials.
  • Be conscious of the disposal of your clothes – make sure they’re recyclable or compostable.
  • Shop from brands that are committed to sustainability.
  • Look for clothes that are made to last.

The challenges of shopping ethically for fashion

Though the benefits of shopping for ethical male fashion are clear, a few challenges come with it.

  • It can be more expensive to shop ethically.
  • Finding sustainable and ethical options in specific categories or styles can be challenging.
  • Not all brands prioritize sustainability.
  • Some people find it difficult to change their shopping habits.

As the awareness of the negative environmental and social impacts of fashion grows, an increasing number of brands are focusing on sustainable fabrics and recycled materials for sustainable men’s clothing.

There are several reasons for this trend. 

Firstly, consumers now have a greater awareness that they can make a difference by choosing sustainable and eco-friendly materials or even recycled materials.

Secondly, the technology and infrastructure for producing your clothing are becoming more advanced, making it easier for brands to create high-quality, ethically-made products.

Finally, there is a growing demand for sustainable clothing brands for men, who are increasingly interested in taking responsibility for their environment.

What are some sustainable materials used in ethical clothing for men?

Here is a list of some sustainable fabrics that are used in today’s industry.

Organic Cotton:

Organic cotton is widely considered to be the most sustainable fabric for clothing. 

However, organic cotton does produce a smaller yield than its bigger brother, cotton. Although it is grown without harmful fertilizers and pesticides, it does allow for natural or synthetic pesticides. Rotenone is one of those which has been linked to Parkinson’s disease.


It is made from synthetic waste such as industrial plastic, waste fabric, and fishing nets to create an eco-friendly nylon yarn. The process is a closed-loop, so less water use and less pollution are made than traditional nylon production. This recycled material’s downside is that it sheds microplastics when washed, ending in the ocean and our bellies.


Hemp is a sustainable and eco-friendly material often used in ethical men’s clothing brands. It is a fast-growing plant that needs little water and no pesticides to grow, and every part of the plant can be used: the outer stalk to make textiles, its woody core for paper, and the seeds as vitamin supplements. 

Hemp is also biodegradable, meaning it will decompose naturally over time.

Why Hemp?

There are many reasons why hemp is an excellent choice for eco-friendly clothing. First of all, it is a renewable resource. Hemp can be grown in various climates, making it an incredibly versatile material. It also requires very little water and no pesticides, making it more sustainable than other materials. And unlike cotton, hemp is not a water-intensive crop.

Another benefit of hemp is that it is biodegradable. When the garment made from hemp eventually wears out, it will decompose naturally without leaving any harmful toxins behind. This is in contrast to synthetic materials like polyester, which are not biodegradable and can take centuries to break down.

What Types of Clothing Can Be Made from Hemp?

Hemp can be used to make various clothing items, including T-shirts, pants, skirts, dresses, and jackets. It is a sturdy material that holds up well to wear and tear, making it a good choice for everyday clothing. Hemp can also make accessories like bags, belts, and or items like curtains and rugs.

The Bottom Line

Hemp is a sustainable and eco-friendly material that can be used to make a variety of clothing items. It is biodegradable, meaning it will break down naturally over time, and Hemp is a good choice for those looking for environmentally friendly clothing options.

Recycled Polyester

Recycled polyester is a sustainable alternative to polyester. It is made from recycled plastic bottles and does not require special dyes.

Recycled polyester is also eco-friendly and more environmentally friendly than polyester; however, you still have to consider wearing plastic on your skin. When you wash it, make sure to put it in a microplastic capturing bag, aka the guppyfriend, to minimize microplastic from entering the sea.


Bamboo is a highly renewable resource because it can grow so quickly. It is also naturally pest-resistant and has an extensive root network, meaning it doesn’t need to be replanted.

Bamboo fabric is often marketed as eco-friendly, but there are some downsides to consider before buying into the hype. Bamboo is a thirsty crop, and it takes a lot of water to produce just one pound of fabric.

It’s also not always clear how sustainably the bamboo used in fabrics is grown and processed. So before you buy eco-friendly bamboo clothing, please research to ensure the material is as sustainable as it claims to be.

Check out: Is Bamboo Fabric Sustainable? Or Are We Being Greenwashed?

Bamboo Rayon:

This is the most common type of bamboo fabric. In an intensive process, the bamboo is cooked in chemicals known to be a risk to human health (like carbon disulfide), which harms workers and seeps out into the environment.

The bamboo is ground up and then forced through tiny holes using high pressure and extreme temperatures to make rayon.

This creates a viscous liquid that is then poured into molds to create threads. The threads are stretched to create yarn used to make fabric. So not only is this process harmful to the environment, but it’s also dangerous for the workers involved.

Recycled Nylon

Nylon is a type of recycled plastic that is derived from oil. While it can be eco-friendly and sustainable, it also has some negative aspects. For instance, the chemical process of turning it into fabric requires a lot of water and energy, it isn’t biodegradable, and it sheds microplastics with every wash.

When it comes to ethical male fashion, there are a number of great brands to choose from. Here are a few of our favorites:

The best sustainable clothing brands, according to zerowasteman

1. Patagonia

They are known for their recycled materials and polyester; now, they have the first neoprene-free wetsuit. As a kitesurfer and water sports enthusiasts, we are all about comfortable wetsuits made with innovative materials that are better for the environment.

Patagonia also prioritizes durability, resulting in less energy, water, and trash consumed. They are a 1% member of the planet, meaning they donate 1% of their sales to environmental organizations.

We love Patagonia and its excellent eco-friendly practices! Not only do they make high-quality outdoor clothing, but they also work hard to be environmentally responsible. It’s something we can get behind!

2. Pact

Pact is a clothing company that specializes in sustainable supply chains, fair trade-certified products, and innovative designs.

All of the materials used to make their clothes are organic, and they use sustainable practices throughout the supply chain to reduce their carbon footprint.

They also work with fair trade certified suppliers who provide fair wages and safe working conditions for all workers involved in the supply chain.

With these values at heart, they have created an ethical supply chain that will support Mother Earth and provide a better workplace for people!

pact sweatpants
Img: Pact

15% Off with code zwm15

3. Nudie Jeans

Founded in 2001, nudie jeans have always been a denim brand dedicated to sustainable practices.

From sourcing their fabrics to their Repair Shops located worldwide, this sustainable brand wants to make sure they are doing their part to be sustainable.

They currently sell in over 50 countries, headquartered in Gothenburg, Sweden.

With a focus on sustainable practices and a funky, weird style, Nudie Jeans is a brand you should check out if you’re looking for sustainable men’s clothing.

Plus, you get free repairs forever.

Img: Nudie Jeans

4. Outerknown

The brand was created by professional surfer Kelly Slater and creative director John Moore in 2015 to improve the clothing industry.

Outerknown is one of the first companies to launch ECONYL® clothing, turning fishing nets into endlessly regenerative fibers.

In addition to its sustainable practices, Outerknown also advocates for ocean plastic awareness and funds beach cleanups.

Their clothes are stylish and comfortable.

Img: Outerknown

5. Colorful Standard

This brand is all about keeping things simple yet colorful, with all of its pieces made from organic cotton.

They are also Fair Labor certified, ensuring that their workers are treated fairly and compensated properly.

Colorful Standard was founded in the UK, but their clothes are now made in Portugal.

Everything they do is based on creating a more sustainable future.

Check out my personal review of the Colorful Standard Sweater.

colorful standard
Img: Colorful Standard

6. Kotn

Kotn is a Canadian brand that makes high-quality organic clothes at an affordable price.

All of their clothes are made from organic cotton, and they focus on sustainable and ethical practices throughout their supply chain.

They are a certified B Corp, which means they meet rigorous social and environmental responsibility standards.

Img: Kotn

7. Toad & Co

Toad and Co’s sustainable clothing brand is all about fun. We started in a garage, and we’re proud of it! In 1997, we partnered with Search, Inc. to co-found the Planet Access Company, a logistics warehouse that provides career opportunities for adults with developmental disabilities.

At Toad and Co, we believe in being eco-friendly. That’s why we use organic cotton in our products, to help reduce our environmental impact. And it doesn’t stop there! We also use renewable energy throughout our supply chain to ensure that we’re doing our part to fight climate change.

We know that being eco-friendly can sometimes be a challenge. But with products like ours, it’s easy to make the switch! So ditch those synthetic fabrics and join the toad and co eco-club!

Img: Toad&Co

8. Boody

Boody is an Australian brand that makes bamboo underwear, sleepwear, and activewear.

Their clothes are comfortable, sustainable, and ethically made.

Come in biodegradable bags and use vegetable ink to print recycled cardboard boxes for shipping.

The company minimizes textile waste through low-waste cutting techniques and reduces its water use by using a closed-loop system in its supply chain.

However, whether Boody ensures payment of a living wage in its supply chain or monitors health and safety issues is unclear.

Despite this, Boody is a good company that takes labor issues seriously by having WRAP-certified factories. Overall, it’s a start for Boody, but some work still needs to be done.

Img: Toad&Co

9. Allbirds

Allbirds is a company that makes eco-friendly shoes. It has a rating of ‘it’s a start’ from GoodOnYou because it uses a medium proportion of eco-friendly materials, including Tencel Lyocell.

However, it does not have a time-bound target for eliminating hazardous chemicals.

Allbirds also uses renewable energy in its supply chain to reduce its climate impact.

There is no evidence that it minimizes textile waste in most of its supply chain, but it is working on this issue.

Overall, Allbirds is a good company trying to make eco-friendly products, and more work can be done to improve its environmental impact.

20220311 JB AllbirdsTreeFlyer Park 2221
Img: Allbirds

10. Organic Basics

Organic Basics is a company that truly believes in the basics. Their name is very telling of the products they make – comfortable closet essentials from bras and socks to long sleeve shirts and beanies. Their closet basics come in solid shades and neutral colors.

What’s important to Organic Basics isn’t just making clothes that look good but making clothes that last. That’s why their pieces are made with high-quality materials and construction. You can trust that their clothes will hold up well over time, no matter how often you wear them.

So whether you’re looking for a new pair of everyday socks or something a little more special for a night out, Organic Basics has you covered.

organic basics
Img: Organic Basics

11. The Classic T-Shirt Company

If we are talking about ethical male fashion, the classic t-shirt company must be on the list of sustainable brands.

The Classic T-Shirt Company is unique in that it offers high-quality, sustainably, and ethically made t-shirts.

The company focuses on a great fit and uses only GOTS organic cotton, saving water and eliminating harmful pesticides. In addition to being environmentally friendly, The Classic T-Shirt Company also prioritizes the well-being of its employees.

The company is based in the US and manufactures all of its products locally. This allows for close monitoring of the production process and ensures that all t-shirts are made to the highest standards.

Give them a try yourself and see the difference! You won’t be disappointed.​

ethical male fashion
Img: The Classic T-Shirt Co

What is a slow fashion brand?

In the world of fashion, there are two predominant types of designers: fast fashion and slow fashion. Fast fashion brands are more concerned with making a profit, and as a result, their clothes are not made to last. On the other hand, slow fashion designers focus on sustainable practices and producing high-quality clothing that can be worn for many years.

Slow fashion is not only about sustainable practices but also about creating a connection between the wearer and the creator. When you buy something from a slow fashion brand, you’re not just buying a piece of clothing but supporting an entire sustainable lifestyle.


As sustainable and ethical male fashion grows, more and more men’s clothing brands focus on organic materials and sustainable practices. So, it is becoming more accessible and easier for men to find fashionable, sustainable, and ethical clothes. If you’re looking to make a difference in fashion, consider shopping ethically for men’s clothing. Plenty of great options exist, and the industry is only getting better at creating sustainable and ethical clothing. Happy shopping!

Photo of author

Hendrik Kaiser

I've studied biology and lived for 3 years on an off-grid permaculture farm. I love kitesurfing and keeping my body healthy and fit. Hence, I care so much about keeping our environment clean and being as zero waste as possible. Being a zerowasteman is a superpower everyone has inside of themselves, and I want to teach you how you can unleash it.

Leave a Comment