It's a great irony that we, as lovers of the outdoors, often wear apparel that's made with toxic dyes and through unsustainable practises.
But how do you know what's good? Start by reading the labels—look for "Bluesign" and similar certification. Then, surf to the companies' websites and peruse the "About," "Mission" or "Values" section to learn more.
Or, just shop for these four items will be as good to you as they are to the Earth:
Columbia OutDry EX ECO Down Jacket
Let’s start with what this down-insulated jacket doesn’t have: PVCs or dyes, and almost no new materials. Don’t let the white colour scare you: it also doesn’t have a traditional exterior layer, just a membrane, so it doesn’t absorb stains. What it does have is excellent waterproof-breathability and solid warmth for its weight. (Women’s pictured, men’s available.)
Osprey Transporter 65
More than the fact this adventure-travel ready duffle is PVC-free, it’s everything Osprey does as a company that makes it worthy of inclusion here. The company backs all their packs with a lifetime warranty, and anything returned is salvaged for parts and teaches the company how to make its gear tougher next time.
Toad & Co. Timehop Tights
Toad & Co.
Like just about everything Toad & Co. makes, these tights mix sustainability with good looks and comfort. The polyester and spandex blend is super soft, hugs just right, wicks moisture and is Bluesign approved, a certification that ensures environmentally sensitive manufacturing.
NSP CocoMat Cruise 11’6”
In a collaboration with coconut water producer Harmless Harvest, this stand-up paddleboard is made with coconut husk waste, replacing some of the petroleum-derived foam and actually strengthening the boards. It’s part of NSP’s efforts to reduce waste and use sustainable epoxy when they can.