When consumers seek out sustainably made yoga mats, or natural deodorants or cruelty-free sneakers from earth-friendly retailers, businesses take note. From the manufacturers to the shop level, your purchases influence everything from a product’s raw materials to the processing it undergoes, and even to how the workers are treated.
We’ve gathered a list of 21 companies selling must-have eco-friendly fitness apparel and products. These items are green and sustainable, often made by hand, and sourced using Fair Trade practices. The companies themselves are increasingly aware of their environmental impact, taking steps to reduce it, often putting sustainable measures in place.
Protect the earth. Shop wisely.
You’ll find Chewylou tees in yoga studios across the country; after all, the clothing line was created to exemplify the good qualities that we could all work to develop or enhance in ourselves. Many of the yoga-themed shirts are printed at ACME Prints in Tempe, one of the greenest printers in the Southwest, who use water-based inks and soy-based screen cleaners. Chewylou takes pride in donating a portion of their proceeds to charities including Faces of Hope and Best Friends Animal Rescue.
Offering technical athletic apparel and eco-friendly casual wear for sale online, Harvest has a mission to protect and improve the planet. To that end, through their partnership with American Forests, they have a tree planted for every garment they sell. Harvest also donates a portion of all sales to water and ocean conservation, including organizations like the 5 Gyres.
Hottie Yoga Wear
With a tagline like “where sexy meets sustainability,” you know that the earth-friendly yoga garments offered by Hottie Yoga Wear are designed to make you look great and cause no harm. In fact, the Quench line uses eco-friendly fabrics and low impact printing techniques; organic and sustainable, they are also made in the USA.
Hyde Yoga Clothing
Offering sustainable organic cotton yoga clothes, Hyde runs its business in accordance with the teaching of the yoga tradition. Organic cotton is environmentally responsible in that it does not use synthetic fertilizers or pesticides and manufacturing designs in that cotton helps reduce air and water pollution associated with conventional cotton processing.
The handmade yoga apparel from this Vancouver-based retailer is eco-friendly in the extreme when you realize that the leggings are locally made from recycled water bottles and the shirts hand printed in their studio, with all garments made sweatshop-free in Canada. Founded in 2012 by yoga teacher and artist Leah Emmott, Inner Fire donates a portion of its profits to The School Fund, an organization that helps facilitate micro-financed educational scholarships for youth in developing countries.
The family business started with oriental rugs over 100 years ago, although Jade Yoga itself began more recently, in 2000, with their production of the first natural rubber (and non-slip) yoga mat. Natural rubber, tapped from rubber trees, is a renewable resource. With no PVCs, the mats are non-toxic, and provide more cushioning, comfort and resilience than typical plastic mats. In addition to making strong-performing, environmentally-friendly yoga mats, Jade Yoga gives back by partnering with Trees for the Future, and plants a tree for every mat sold.
Based in Redondo Beach, California, this SoCal yoga inspired apparel brand was established in 2008 by Kelly Kolterman, an artist, yoga studio owner, and yoga teacher. Jala Clothing seeks out suppliers that conserve resources, manufacture locally and ethically and are California family-owned businesses. Partnered with Yoga Gives Back, a non profit organization whose mission is to help mothers in India start their own businesses and send their children to school, Jala gives back through charitable services.
For Fair Trade meditation and yoga gear sustainably handmade in the Himalayas, there’s no place like Kathmandu Yogi. Marketing professional and yogi, Natasha Casanova, is the founder of the company, which sells its meditation cushions, yoga mat bags and malas online and selected stores.
Kiss My Face
Founded 30 years ago, Kiss My Face is a green marketplace staple. The all-natural body care company offers more than 200 products for head to toe, including deodorants and sunscreens. The deodorants are free of parabens and aluminum chlorohydrate, yet provide effective odor protection using botanicals like coriander, hops and rosemary combined with odor absorbing ingredients. The Kiss My Face sunscreen lotions are made with a recipe that includes natural antioxidants like aloe, cucumber and green tea, and does not contain oxybenzone and parabens.
Inspired by the Kiwi lifestyle, and made in the USA, Koru offers sustainable swimwear made from Italian fabric derived from discarded fishing nets. Catering to environmentally conscious women seeking a combination of fashion and function, Koru aspires to be a leader in eco-responsible manufacturing practices by using only sustainable fabrics, and even packaging their products in compostable clear bags made from plant materials. Koru is a member of 1% for the Planet and a partner of Healthy Seas.
All the organic skincare and beauty products at LoveLula are free from SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) and parabens and none are tested on animals. They produce aluminium free deodorants for men and women, like one that contains naturally sourced zinc ricinoleate, corn starch and baking soda and grapefruit seed extract to fight odor-causing bacteria. Their sunscreen lotions use carrot seed oil to protect from UV rays, and are free from parabens, formaldehydes, sulphates and petrochemicals.
The line of hand crafted jewelry sold by Lovepray is inspired by yoga, nature and fashion. Each piece is made in the USA with natural, fairly traded and cruelty-free materials. Founded by Carolina Elias in 2011, the jewelry is sold on their site and is available in several shops, boutiques, and yoga studios and at the shows they attend, mainly in Southern California.
A family run business founded in 2010 and based in Los Angeles, LVR apparel is earth-friendly, using organic cotton, recycled polyester, modal and low-impact dyes. LVR gives back by donating a portion of revenues to ARCAS, a Guatemala wildlife rescue. The company also makes monthly donations of clothing to the Downtown Women’s Center in Los Angeles, whose mission is to create a safe space for women in need.
Founded by yogis on the simple idea that a better mat can make a world of difference, Maduka offers yoga mats and gear crafted using enduring, natural, and whenever possible, renewable materials. Manduka came up with the first 100% recyclable mat, and follows zero waste and emissions-free manufacturing practices, leaving as small a footprint as possible. Its eKO series of mats, for example, are made from biodegradable, non-Amazon sustainably harvested, natural tree rubber with no toxic chemicals, dyes, glues or foaming agents used in its creation.
Even the underwear at PinkCheeky is eco-friendly, made in the USA from locally sourced, pesticide-free organic cotton, and dyed with low impact dyes. Same goes for the yoga shorts and apparel. The mission at PinkCheeky is to show off your cheeks, certainly; but in a way that reduces the company’s environmental impact. By manufacturing in America, they can keep jobs local, which in turn means no sweatshops.
If you’re looking for vegan and eco-friendly shoes, Planet Shoes in Boston has a selection of ethical shoes from eco conscious brands. The shoes in their vegan collection are made entirely without animal-based materials and the companies that make them also embrace earth-friendly practices that include using renewable energy resources, recycled materials in footwear and packaging as well as sustainable product materials
Founded in 2009 by Hayley Elliott, Purusha People makes organic and recycled clothing for yoga, athletics and leisure. In addition to sourcing organic and soft fibers, they use non-toxic water-based inks and low-impact dyes. And from their FAQs: “purusha is a sanskrit word that means ‘cosmic being’, our source of pure consciousness and our true identity.”
To clean your eco-friendly clothes, why not use an eco-friendly detergent? Enter Rockin’ Green, a non-toxic laundry soap that gets rid of dirt and stains, but is gentle on the environment, your athletic wear and your skin. The organic cleaners produced by this Texas-based company are biodegradable, phosphate-free, and also free of SLS, parabens and optical brighteners.
Sometimes a workout or stressful day can be a pain in the neck. If you’re feeling sore in your neck and shoulders, there’s a Fair Trade, handmade therapy pillow that can ease that uncomfortable feeling. It’s filled with all-natural Himalayan salts, and when heated (or cooled), and placed on your shoulders, provides relief. From Isabella Samovsky, who launched Solay Wellness in 2004 as an eco-friendly provider of wellness products, with its retail store and spa in Skokie, Illinois.
The Ultimate Green Store
If you need to pick up an eco-friendly towel to use after a workout, take a look at The Ultimate Green Store. Eco-conscious shoppers can choose environmentally friendly products including water bottles, backpacks and other sports apparel and home products. The towels are made from organic cotton grown without the use of pesticides and either whitened naturally with hydrogen peroxide (not chlorine bleach) or colored with low impact dyes.
Located in Lisle, Illinois, near Naperville, Margo Gebraski owns and runs Yoga Rhythms Studio & Sadhana Support Store. She specializes in Svaroopa, a style of healing yoga, using props and poses to provide tension release. The products in her store are organic and Fair Trade, supporting the craftspeople who make them. They include items for all styles of yoga, meditation and Ayurvedic practices, such as Neti pots, meditation timers, and meditation seats.