Investing in denim jeans is a must. Every woman needs at least one pair of jeans that make her feel confident and comfortable, that she can dress up or down. When you invest in a high quality pair of jeans, they will last you years and years…. But, we all know how difficult it can be to find the perfect pair! Not only do they have to fit your body just right, but if you’re going to invest in a wardrobe staple that you know you’re going to get a lot of use out of, you want them to be high quality and made ethically as well.
Sadly, traditional denim jeans require a TON of water to produce. It takes about 2,900 gallons of water to produce one pair of traditional cotton jeans! That doesn’t even include the water needed to grow the cotton, which is an extremely water-intense plant.
The good news is, there are several denim companies who are doing things differently by using innovative technologies and creative upcycling to create jeans that are actually worth your investment, in more ways than one.
In order from most affordable to the biggest investment, here are six incredible denim brands that sell ethically-made, sustainable, and high-quality denim.
You probably know of Everlane, the brand that has made radical transparency trendy. Their jeans are produced ethically out of premium Japanese denim, which has a touch of stretch. The jeans are made in a facility that uses 98% recycled water and are 85% air-dried, meaning lots of saved electricity.
Re/Done makes jeans that are just as unique as you are, by literally taking old jeans and making them into new ones! Each pair is handpicked, cut and sewn in Los Angeles using water conserving methods and zero harsh chemicals.
Sustainability is at the core of everything Reformation does as a company, from the energy efficiency of their factories to the way they treat and train their employees. The average pair of Reformation jeans requires about 88% less water than a traditional pair, and a lot of their denim is made out of deadstock or repurposed vintage fabric, which would otherwise go to waste. Reformation has a really wide selection of all different styles and colors of denim.
MUD jeans are created with a circular design, which means they can be redesigned, reused, and recycled easily. Their jeans are made in fair factories from recycled cotton, which saves water and cuts down on CO2 emissions. They also have a jean leasing program, where you can pay a monthly subscription fee to wear your jeans for a while, and then you’re done with them, send them right back for someone else to love!
AG Jeans are made using Ozone Technology, which cuts their water consumption in half. They use natural, biodegradable, eco-conscious fibers and continually take steps to reduce waste and energy use. Their jeans are manufactured in their own vertically integrated factories, so they are able to keep a transparent eye on their entire production process to ensure ethical and sustainable policies are followed. The brand also partners with charity: water to help bring clean drinking water to developing countries.
Triarchy denim jeans are made using 85% less water than traditional jeans and are made out of either re-purposed denim or eco-conscious Tencel. The hardware on the jeans is made from recycled metal and the labels are made from recycled leather and recycled plastic bottles. Triarchy has one factory in Mexico and one in Los Angeles, where the team visits frequently in order to maintain transparency and make sure all of the employees are being treated fairly.
Images via Everlane & Reformation