Did you know that your standout one piece swimsuit or go-to bikini is probably made from plastic-based synthetic fibres? Designed from a material like elastane, polyester, Lycra or nylon, that stretches well and dries quickly, but also has a detrimental affect on the environment.
This is because synthetic swimwear sheds tiny plastic fibres when you swim in it or wash the garment. These synthetic pieces also need a large amount of water and energy to produce, and when they’re tired, worn and ready to be thrown away, they don’t biodegrade which can contribute to the millions of tons of plastic that sits in the ocean or landfills forever.
But there are sustainable swimwear alternatives that are both stylish and planet-friendly. Emerging swimwear labels are constantly searching for innovative, new wave fabrics that are kinder to the oceans we swim in. One of these brands is Dubai-based Ohoy Swim, founded by Danish friends Henna Marie Kaarlelah and Anna Maria Nielsen.
Ohoy uses Econyl yarn which is made from discarded nylons including fishing nets collected from the sea, to create summer-ready swimsuits and bikinis infused with minimalist Scandi style. Other sustainable swimwear labels based in the region include Léa The Label; a slow fashion swimwear brand manufactured responsibly in Bali, that also rescues and reuses waste to create sleek swimwear in neutral colours; and up-and-coming brand, Sandymouth Swim; another label which utilises regenerated nylon to create bikinis in bright neons and tropical prints.
Beyond the region, look to Hunza G’s flattering crinkle made-to-order fabric — limiting any possible dead-stock fabric and unsold finished garments — that have attracted an A-list fanbase which ranges from Emily Ratajkowski to Dana Hourani; and eco-focused resortwear favourites such as Mara Hoffman, Talia Collins and Australian label Peony.
“Our collections are inspired by a life-long love affair with the ocean,” Becky Morton, founder of Peony swimwear, tells MOJEH. “We care deeply for our environment and community — after all, we create garments to wear while enjoying the infinite beauty of nature. But beyond that, we are creating so much more than swimwear. We are creating a world that our girl is a part of.”