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What is Ethical Swimwear?

Swimwear is usually made with harmful synthetic fabrics that take years to break down and harm the environment. Some common harmful synthetic fabrics are nylon, polyester, and spandex. 

Ethical swimwear is to not be mistaken for sustainable swimwear. Although the terms ethical and sustainable have become interchangeable, they do not mean the same thing. 

Sustainability refers directly to the materials used to make swimwear. For a product to be ethical, it would have to be inherently sustainable in nature. An ethical product seeks to follow what is right.

Also read: Toxic Clothing and the Environment

Planet Earth
Photo by Pixabay.

What Makes A Product Ethical?

Brands that produce ethical products are aware of the issues and problems that are happening in our world. brands who recognize these issues and proceed to actively do something about it are ethical. 

When looking to see if a product is ethical, you should try to look for these three main points.

3 Main Point of Ethical Products:

  1. Eco-conscious 

  2. Socially aware

  3. Locally focused

1. Eco-conscious

Check to see if the product is made with environmentally friendly and sustainable materials, using eco-friendly production methods.

Is the brand aware of the impact they have caused on the environment and is actively doing something about it?

2. Socially Aware

Does the brand care about its workers and society?

Is there diversity, inclusivity, fairtrade, no child labor, and no sweatshop?

3. Locally Focused

Is the product supporting the local community and reducing greenhouse gas emissions?

Is the product preserving traditional craft that is only available in the area of production?

Messy pile of clothes.
Photo by Ron Lach.

Staying Away From Fake Ethical Products

Unfortunately, there are brands that take advantage of people and market their products as ethical even though they aren’t. In order to identify which products are ethical here is a list of items to check off.

Ethical Product Checklist:

  1. Certifications

  2. Ingredients/materials

  3. Online presence

1. Certifications

Ethical products are labeled with certification marks to help you identify them. These certifications can be government-approved or led by third parties. In order to obtain these certifications, the product has to go under strict tests and checks.

Here are some ethical marks to look out for:

  • Fairtrade mark

  • Organic mark

  • Vegan label

  • Leaping bunny (cruelty-free)

  • B-Corp

  • FSC

There are different ethical certification marks depending on where you live. Do your research to find out what the ethical certification marks are in your area.

2. Ingredients/Materials

Another way to check to see if a product is ethical is by checking the ingredient/material label.  

Although many ethical products have ethical certification marks, there are many ethical products that do not have labels. If that is the case then take a look at the product’s ingredient/material label. 

Some ingredients/materials to avoid are:

  • Polyester

  • Rayon

  • Nylon

  • Spandex

  • Acrylic 

  • Acetate 

Some ingredients/materials to look for are:

  • Organic cotton

  • Linen

  • Tencel

  • Hemp

  • Bamboo

  • Wool 

  • Other plant-based fibers

buckets of cut bamboo
Photo by Toni Cuenca.

3. Online Presence

It is important to do your research on the brand. Search through the brand’s website. 

Look through their reviews, “about us,” articles, branding, and their concepts. 

Some questions to ask yourself are:

  • What do their articles say?

  • What are people saying?

  • What do their reviews say?

  • What was the purpose of the product?

  • Why did they make this product?

Many brands that sell ethical products are proud of what they are doing. Look for genuine enthusiastic brands that share their ethical ideas. 

It is ideal to check off all three main points before purchasing a product from a brand. However, not all ethical brands have a certification label. Therefore only checking off the second and third main points from the list works too.

Why Buy Ethical Fashion?

We should buy ethical clothing because it is safer for people and the environment. Ethical clothing is made through sustainable practices that reduce water consumption and waste production.

By purchasing ethical fashion, you are supporting brands that value social welfare and worker rights. Not to mention, clothing made with eco-friendly fabrics are softer and stronger. 

Ethical clothing is safe for people and the environment because it avoids materials that contain carcinogens, toxins, or other harmful chemicals. Additionally, ethical clothing is also made from eco-friendly materials like organic, pesticide-free, and non-GMO cotton.

7 Reasons You Should Buy Ethical Clothing:

  1. Lasts longer

  2. Upholds equal rights

  3. Better for you

  4. Supports workers and local communities

  5. Helps the environment

  6. Fueled by genuine beliefs

  7. Makes you proud

fabric, yarn, and sewing tools.
Photo by Surene Palvie.

What is Ethical Fashion?

Ethical fashion is product design, production, and distribution that focuses on reducing harm to people and the planet. Ethical fashion benefits those working along the supply chain and creates a better future for everyone.

Ethical fashion is concerned with social impact and the ethics behind a brand’s label. 

What is Ethical Swimwear?

Having explored what it means for a product to be ethical and what is ethical fashion, we can now define what is ethical swimwear.

Swimwear is typically made with nylon, spandex, and polyester. These synthetic materials are toxic to you and the environment. Ethical swimwear is made from natural fibers and eco-friendly materials. Additionally, brands that produce ethical swimwear ensure that their products are made ethically.

Ethical production refers to the work conditions for all workers in the manufacturing process. Ethical brands make sure to follow the code of conduct in the supply chain. 

The location where a swimsuit is made is important because of human rights and labor rights in that country. Many brands will have their swimwear made in a country where their only concern is cost. 

Where a swimsuit is made can tell a lot about how ethical it is. There is constant downward pressure in the manufacturing market to find countries with the latest access to textile production at a cheaper cost.

Countries with unethical manufacturing practices:

  • Bangladesh

  • Vietnam

  • Indonesia

  • China

  • Philippines

Countries with ethical manufacturing practices:

  • India 

  • Colombia

  • Costa Rica

  • Ghana

  • Nicaragua

Why Buy Ethical Swimwear?

It is important to buy ethical swimwear because you are supporting brands who are striving to have minimal impact on the planet. These brands also support the fair treatment of textile workers around the world.

Ethical Swimwear has the potential for less impact on the environment through the materials being used to create it. 

What the purchase of ethical swimwear can do:

  • Reduce ocean waste and other plastic waste

  • Preserve natural resources

  • Produce high-quality fabrics

  • Support ethical supply chains

  • Promote innovation

  • Encourage wardrobe longevity and circularity

Our New Direction

Here at BeachCandy Swimwear, we are currently working towards a better future. We are actively shifting into becoming  a clean, eco-friendly and sustainable brand. 

The BeachCandy team is currently exploring natural fibers in India. We are learning about sustainable fabrics and how to reduce our waste production. Sustainability and ethical practices are our top priority.

BeachCandy has officially discontinued all of our current line of swimwear. As we shift into an eco-friendly brand, we want to start brand new. All previous bathing suits made with synthetic fabrics are on sale.

All new swimwear designs and finished products will be made with natural fibers. These natural fibers are biodegradable and better for the environment. 

Natural fabrics decompose harmlessly once they have reached the end of their life. Additionally, the production of natural fabrics is less harmful to the environment. We’re excited to start creating gorgeous ethical and sustainable swimsuits. Ethical and sustainable fashion can also be stylish and chic. Stay tuned to see the beautiful and bold swim styles we’ll bring to the world!

Shop our handmade bikinis, one piece bathing suits, and women's resort wear in the biggest sale in BeachCandy history. Join us at the start of this new journey and help support our effort to become the best of ethical and sustainable swimwear brands.

Follow BeachCandy Swimwear on Instagram

Written by Emma Suarez.

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