It is always important to buy clothing from sustainable fabrics and from a reputable source.
It is doubly important when the clothing is underwear.
Underwear tends to be a product that is only worn by one person and then discarded to landfill. It does not tend to be part of the second-hand clothing market and people are unlikely to put it in the clothing recycling sack.
Ethical Underwear Ideals List.
- Sustainable or Recycled Fabric.
- New Fabric from a Certified Organic Source.
- Fabric & Product made in a transparent way.
- High Percentage of product Biodegradable.
- Limited Product Miles – Made & Sourced as local as possible.
- Quality – Made well and made to last.
To find out more about ethically sustainable fabric read my post on Ethical fabrics.
Cotton – Has to be Organic or recycled. If new it is Fairtrade and Dyed without using Azo Dyes. Look for an Oeko- Geo TEx 100 & A GOTS or Soil Association Organic Certification.
Tencel (TM) – Is made from Eucalyptus Trees or Modal (TM) Using Beech Tree pulp made using the Lyocell Closed loop technique are thought to be the most environmentally friendly but do tend to be a little more expensive.
All the above are biodegradable but without some form of elastane, the underwear will not fit as well and will be in danger of falling down. Elastane, Nylon and its similar fabrics are not biodegradable and are usually mixed in in small amount like 5 to 10% in underwear. If possible it would be better to use recycled Nylon.
Remember when washing items containing synthetic fabrics to use a GUPPYFRIEND to reduce micro-plastics in the water.
Read more about Sustainable Fabrics Here
My top underwear choices
The Ideal – Organic Basic Tencel Lite Briefs 2 Packs.
- 95% TENCEL™ lyocell, 5% elastane.
- Made in Portugal.
- Made from pulp made from Eucalyptus trees. Closed-Loop system with non-toxic organic Solvents.
- Made with recycled Nylon, certified from pre-consumer textile waste that would otherwise go to the landfill. It takes 80% less water to make and creates 90% fewer CO2 emissions in comparison to the virgin fabric.
- Costs £42.00 for a pack of 2 from Content Beauty
The Next Best One – Woron Mid-Rise Brief Base Black.
- 90% Modal, 10% Elastane.
- Lenzing Modal, which is a fine, smooth fibre made from beech wood. The Lenzing fibre is produced in Europe.
- The beechwood used in the Modal production is from sustainable forestry plantations growing native trees. Full integration at the Lenzing site makes it possible to produce the fibres in a CO2 neutral way.
- Made in Hungary. Oko-Tex Certified.
- Cost £22 from Content
In the top 3 – People Tree Organic Lace Hipster Briefs.
- 95% organic cotton, 5% elastane.
- Made in India by Rajlakshemi, a pioneer in organic manufacturing combining high-quality tailoring with a fair deal for farmers and workers.
- Fairtrade (WFTO).
- Organic – Soil Association.
- Cost £7.95 from Ethical Superstore
Still a good choice
Boody Bamboo Classic Bikini Briefs.
- 80% organic bamboo*, 13% nylon, 7% spandex. *rayon made from bamboo.
- Closed-Loop Production, Zero Waste Manufactured.
- Made in China.
- ECOCERT Organic Bamboo.
- Oeko Tex 100 – Certified that no harmful chemicals or residues present, and that the product was made in environmentally friendly conditions.
- Cost £8.95 from Natural Collection or Ethical Superstore and Amazon
Thought Hannah Bikini Briefs
- 67% bamboo viscose, 28% GOTS certified organic cotton, 5% elastane.
- Made in China.
- Fabric Made within a Closed Loop System.
- Organic GOTS Certified Cotton.
- Dye’s are AZO Free.
- Oeko Tex 100 Certified that no harmful chemicals or residues present, and that the product was made in environmentally friendly conditions.
- Costs £8.95 from Ethical Superstore or Thought
BAM Bamboo Seamless Briefs.
- 78% Bamboo Viscose, 15% Polyamide, 7% Elastane.
- Made in China & Turkey.
- Little clear information on the website about production methods. No reply on emailing for more detailed information.
- No visible certifications.
- Cost £12.00 From BAM, on 3 for 2 Offer
How many pair's of knicker's should you have?
When I googled the ideal number of pair’s of knicker’s you should have, I was astonished that the article at the top said 20-25 pairs or 3 weeks worth! To me thats far too many. I own about 10 pairs and that does me fine but I do my laundry regularly as I work from home.
I have had pair’s of knickers literally for years and they are not something I replace very often, unless I am buying a set with a bra.
I am so intrigued now I am going to have to ask everyone!
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