9 sustainable workwear brands you should consider this spring
Whether you’re going back to the office—or just tired of wearing sweats at home after more than two years, a strangely relatable feeling—your workwear lineup could probably use a spring refresh.
That said, in an effort to curb fast fashion, here are several sustainable apparel and accessories brands with quality products and quality production methods to consider for investment pieces that will last you longer than a few seasons.
Touting itself as a maker of “premium essentials” from small leather goods to relaxed trench coats, Cuyana takes pride in organic practices ensuring that no harmful pesticides or chemicals are used from field to fiber to fabric. Grown, spun, and finished all in Peru, Cuyana’s implementation of pima cotton is extremely durable and very soft, keeping you cool and collected all day, especially in spring and summer. This asymmetrical overlay dress ($148) was finished by a family-owned workshop collective near Lima.
In more casual workplaces, Everlane has become a go-to retailer for wardrobe necessities. In time for Earth Month, the brand is restocking its sustainable swimwear (made in recycled Econyl material) and its Low Water Jean, which uses 98% recycled water, and less harmful Bluesign dyes than traditional denim.
Launched in 2001 as a luxe kidswear brand, Kule specializes in that Franco-American style that epitomizes cool summers in every sense of the word “cool.” (Think about how “Kule” is pronounced.) With its Green Capsule collection, the brand uses 100% organic yarns and recycled trims, all washed in recycled water. And all purchases are shipped with recyclable and biodegradable packaging.
M.M.LaFleur is always a good choice for premium, luxury workwear. The label’s spring 2022 collection, “Sky’s the Limit,” was designed to encourage wearers to step out of their comfort zones, routines, and winter hibernation. These “power casual” pieces are flexible and comfortable but still offer a bit of an edge. Some versatile options include the Carr jumpsuit ($345), the Talulah paperbag pant ($265), and the James dress ($295).
For everyday options, Mott & Bow is a New York–based premium clothing brand specializing in elevated staples at budget-friendly prices. Among the brand’s most popular offerings: its cashmere sweaters, available for both men and women in V-neck and crewneck styles. These super-soft and airy sweaters will keep you comfortable during any activity but warm enough through transitional weather patterns.
Made in New York, Of Mercer’s collection of functional, elevated, and chic basics are designed for women, by women. The brand uses machine-washable and comfortable fabrics to create effortless yet polished workwear pieces for everywhere (and every Zoom call). Versatile bestsellers to dress up or down include the ultimate structured LBD, a luxe drapey top, the collarless statement blazer, and a pull-on tapered trouser. Of Mercer also has a number of maternity styles, designed for pre- and postnatal wear.
While the brand says it has been reusing and recycling clothes since 2015, Reformation is doubling down with a new program. Dubbed RefRecycling, Reformation is paying its customers to send back old Reformation-branded shoes, denim, sweaters, and activewear, all of which will be broken down back into fiber, and then turned into new products, with as few materials as possible. And ahead of summer, Reformation is expanded its linen collection. Linen is a plant-based textile, made from the flax plant, which grows fast, uses little water, and emits one-fourth of the carbon per pound that cotton does. Some versatile options include the Jaylen linen dress ($248) and the Isla linen jumpsuit ($218).
Vegan leather bags have become more ubiquitous in the last few years. Founded in 2017, Samara makes everything from coin purses to laptop sleeves to shoulder bags in the most elegant, refined styles and are meant to last for years. The Kiana backpack, in particular, is an especially timeless piece that is ready for work (it can fit a 15-inch laptop) or travel, redefining “backpacking” for the better. SRP: $165
While it’s been around for more than 30 years, Scanlan Theodore brings a slight edge to the basics—from cashmere sweaters to structured button-down shirts. A few exceptional picks: the full-length, cotton gathered shirt dress, with subtle cutouts (and an elastic band) around the waistline ($600); and the cashmere skirt ($550), a perfect transition piece from winter to spring (that you can pull back out again as soon as fall starts).
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