Life & Style

Fashion, Life & Style

How To Support The Ethical Fashion Movement When You’re Broke

Do you want to support the ethical fashion movement, but your bank account says no? Don’t worry, here are seven impactful steps you can take to take action against fast fashion and support garment workers across the globe.

Ethical consumer spending has swelled to over £41bn a year, as UK consumers’ shopping habits increasingly reflect their concerns about the environment, animal welfare, social justice, and human rights.

This ethical market has risen almost fourfold in the past 20 years. The options available to ethical shoppers have kept pace with this growth, with more choices available to sustainably-minded consumers than ever before.

The Barriers to Shopping Ethically

Despite this growth in interest in ethical shopping, shopping ethically can be tricky. Particularly so when it comes to clothing. Whilst there is a growing proliferation of ethical clothing brands that create clothing made responsibly and fairly from sustainable materials, there are a number of barriers in place for would-be ethical shoppers.

As a starter for ten, the ethical clothing market lacks a range of inclusive sizes. If you’ve above a size 16 or 18, your options rapidly diminish. And that’s before the issue of cost is raised. Unless you are shopping for secondhand clothing, sustainable fashion tends to come with a higher price tag compared to its fast-fashion counterparts. It’s often asked why is ethical clothing so expensive?  A better way of looking at it should be asking why fast fashion is so cheap.

How to Support The Ethical Fashion Movement When You’re Broke

How to support the ethical fashion movement when you're broke

While the cost of fast fashion is easily a topic for a whole other blog post, cost remains a significant entry barrier to shopping for ethical clothing for many. The good news is that you don’t have to buy ethical clothing in order to support the ethical fashion movement. There are many other impactful ways to support the ethical fashion movement from the bottom up without denting your budget.  Here are seven to start you off:

Look After The Clothes You Have

The single most sustainable clothes are the ones you already own. When it requires 2700 litres of water to produce a single t-shirt, keeping a garment you already own in use for longer will do far more for the environment than any new purchase you could ever make. And looking after our clothes, and in turn buying less, diminishes the power of the fast fashion industry.

It’s simple to prolong the life of your clothes.  Washing your clothes less is the ultimate lazy way to do so. When you do need to wash them, simply wash and dry your clothes according to their care labels. Treating stains when they arise, rather than letting them set also helps prevent our clothes from becoming unwearable.

Another key aspect is repairing our clothes when rips or tears arise. Nadia Piechestein, the sustainable fashion designer behind TLZ Movement, uses offcuts from her work in alterations and repairs, to create zero-waste patches for people to mend their clothes with. 

Nadia says it’s important to mend the clothes we own because it helps minimise our impact on the planet. Her easy-fix advice is to use patches to cover up holes. Nadia says “it gives a personalized style and you can go out proudly saying that your garments were reworked”.

Be An Outfit Repeater

The rise of social media has seen our thirst for new clothing reach extreme levels. Instagram’s insidious “outfit of the day” hashtag (#OOTD) encourages dysfunctional clothing consumption levels. We’re now at the point where one in six young people say that they don’t feel they can wear an outfit again once it’s been seen on social media. This is according to research by environmental charity Hubbub.

Lianne Bell, author of the book How On Earth Can I Be Eco-Friendly attributes the problem to the cost and availability of fast fashion. Bell says in this article for Moral Fibres: “we’ve come to think of clothing as disposable and easily replaceable. When something is so readily available to us, it devalues the whole item.” 

Rewearing the clothes we have seems hardly revolutionary, but it’s a key way to help halt the rise of fast fashion. Simply committing to re-wearing the clothes you already own for as long as possible can disrupt the fast fashion industry, an industry that relies on people buying new clothes as often as possible.

Sell or Swap or Donate Your Old Clothes

In an ideal world, we would all wear our clothes until they were no longer repairable. However, life never stays the same. Body sizes change, lifestyles change, tastes change. In these instances, selling or passing on our clothes helps disrupt the fast fashion market. 

It’s never been easier to do so, and there are many sites where you can sell clothes online. Alternatively, you can swap clothes with friends, or through organised clothes swaps in your local community. If these aren’t an option, then online clothing swapping platforms, such as Shwap, are great ways to keep clothing out of landfill, build an ethical fashion wardrobe, and reduce our reliance on fast fashion.

If you are donating clothing, remember that charity shops aren’t waste disposal units. Charity shops want clean, good-quality clothing from desirable brands. Before donating, ask yourself if you would honestly buy the item you are planning to donate. If not, recycle the item of clothing instead.      

Shop Secondhand

Buying second-hand is one of the easiest ways for consumers to understand that they are choosing a more sustainable option than buying new. It’s also one of the most affordable ways to take part in ethical fashion. 

Shopping secondhand does have its barriers. It can be tricky to find inclusive sizing on the rails of your local charity shop. Meanwhile, men’s options can be limited. The good news is that there is a proliferation of secondhand shopping sites online – from eBay to Depop and everything in between. You can even shop Oxfam Online*. Here proceeds support their work on fighting poverty and injustice across the globe. You do tend to find more options online, with many sites having healthy plus-size and men’s clothing sections.   

Support Garment Workers

Garment workers have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. When the pandemic hit in March 2020, and stay-at-home orders closed stores across the globe, many big-name fashion brands cancelled their orders placed before the crisis. This included some orders which had already been shipped. This financially devastated factories since they had already paid for fabric and other production costs for these orders. Many were left with no money to pay workers’ wages, and garment workers were left to go without. 

According to the Workers Rights Consortium, many brands have still not paid for these cancelled orders. To date, the brands that haven’t paid for cancelled orders include Matalan, Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, Esprit, and Oscar De La Renta.

Through their #PayUp campaign, The Clean Clothes Campaign is pressing the global fashion brands that have refused to pay for over $16 billion worth of goods ordered since the start of the outbreak. With Twitter templates that you can use to tell brands to pay up, supporting garment workers’ rights and encouraging fashion brands to adopt more ethical practices is as simple as sending a tweet. 

Have Conversations Around Ethical Fashion

Having conversations with fashion brands that you think should be doing better is another key way to support the ethical fashion movement from the ground up. 

Fashion Revolution’s Who Made My Clothes campaign, for example, encourages people to ask brands via email or social media, who made the clothes they are wearing, or the fabric their clothes are made from. This challenges brands to protect the people in their supply chains. It also encourages them to take responsibility for the human rights and wellbeing of everyone involved in the manufacturing process, from farm to factory to finished garment.

Conversations don’t have to stop there. Chat to your friends and family about why supporting ethical fashion doesn’t just mean buying a pair of jeans made from organic cotton. When we take into account the entire supply chain and life cycle of a garment, through to a brand’s business practices, and to our options for recycling when the item we’ve bought reaches the end of its life, do we see that ethical fashion extends far beyond just what our clothes are made from.

Call Out Greenwashing

Greenwashing is when a brand conveys misleading information that its products are environmentally friendly. It’s rife in the fast fashion industry. Here, brands like H&M, BooHoo, and Primark, which are rooted in promoting hyper-consumption, have all launched lines with a sustainable facade. These, often small collections – in the case of Primark, their ‘sustainable range’ comprises of just 8 items – are partly made with recycled or organic materials. They’re then sold alongside these brands’ standard options. 

The problem is scale. At the time of writing, H&M, for example, has 9416 women’s items of clothing for sale on its website. Of these, 1337 are new arrivals. This rate of manufacturing simply isn’t sustainable for the planet. Rather than cutting back on manufacturing levels, H&M instead launched their Conscious Collection – their “sustainable” range. Here at least 50% of each piece is made from more sustainable materials, like organic cotton or recycled polyester. However, a t-shirt made partly from organic cotton isn’t going to save the planet. H&M ditching its fast-fashion model would. 

Call out this kind of greenwashing when you see it. This helps other people realise that this type of greenwashing is a hollow facade and that there are better ways to help support the ethical fashion movement than buying a “concious” t-shirt.

Final Thoughts on Supporting Ethical Fashion

If we want to change the systems that exploit communities and the environments that we live in, then it’s important to understand that what we buy is only one tiny element of that. Our actions and conversations that we have with others can have a much bigger impact. These can create ripples into the greater world that can bring about positive change to the ethical fashion industry from the bottom up. From change that supports garment workers and increases their wages and improves their working conditions,. To change that reduces both waste and the rate at which we buy new clothes. It’s a win for people and for the planet. And it doesn’t have to hurt your bank balance.

Fashion, Life & Style

25+ Best Men’s Ethical Clothing Brands for 2021

ethical clothing companies

Looking for the best men’s ethical clothing companies and brands for 2021?  Right this way – I’ve got over 25 sustainable, eco-friendly and ethical brands that you need to know about.

I regularly get emails from male Moral Fibres readers asking about men’s ethical clothing brands and companies. This is because men’s ethical clothing can be a little trickier to track down than their female counterparts.  The reported eco gender gap doesn’t help either. There is definitely less choice out there for me.

However, don’t be discouraged. There are lots of great shops and companies out there catering to the ethical man. In fact, I’ve got over 25 brands that cater to men, and are doing some great things. From sustainable fabric to ethical production, and embracing circularity, there’s lots of exciting work happening.

Quicklinks for Men’s Ethical Clothing

First off, here are the quick links for men’s ethical clothing brands in case you just want to visit the site of a particular brand. Scroll down past this section if you want more information about each ethical clothing brand, including a price key. Some ethical brands have also offered exclusive discount codes for Moral Fibres readers, so keep reading for these too.

In order to help support the running costs of Moral Fibres, this post contains affiliate links, denoted by *. Moral Fibres may earn a small commission, at no extra cost to readers, on items that have been purchased through those links. This income helps keep this site running.

The Best Men’s Ethical Clothing Brands

Image showing a flatlay of checked shirt, a pair of jeans, a belt and some boots, with a blue text box that says the ultimate guide to men's ethical clothing

Here are over 25 ethical clothing brands for men available in the UK, which I’ve categorised by size and budget to make it easy to find the brands that suit you best. I’m mindful that everyone has different ethics when it comes to clothing. As such, this guide has been designed to be a starting-off point for you to research the most sustainable option for your own particular set of ethics.

This list will be ever-evolving as I find more shops.  In fact, it’s been updated for 2021. So make sure that you bookmark this post or add it to Pinterest so you can revisit it on a semi-regular basis!

The price range key for this guide is £ = Under £50 | ££ = £50 – 100 | £££ = £100+

Beyond Retro

Budget: £

Cater for: sizes XS to XXL

If you’re into vintage clothing and one-off vintage pieces then Beyond Retro* says they have the biggest range of men’s and unisex vintage fashion in the UK.  Their clothing spans from the 1950s to the 1990s, and they carry a wide range of styles.  You can shop by clothing type, by brand, by era, and even by type of fabric should you wish to avoid synthetic fibres. Sizes vary, being vintage, however Beyond Retro generally caters for sizes XS to XXL.

Use the exclusive code MORALFIBRES at the checkout to receive 15% off your order at Beyond Retro.

Bam: Bamboo Clothing

Budget: ££

Cater for: sizes S to XXL

Bam: Bamboo* sells sustainably sourced activewear made from bamboo.  And new for Autumn 2020: low impact jeans.  It takes around 7600l of water to make a conventional pair of jeans.  Bam: Bamboo says their jeans require less water to make.

Rather than just stopping there, Bam: Bamboo is also seeking to be impact positive.  As such, they are making great steps to minimise their impacts on climate, waste, water, chemicals, humans, and land use.

Brothers We Stand Men’s Ethical Clothing

Brothers We Stand ethical men's clothing

Budget: £ – £££

Cater for: sizes S to XXL

Brothers We Stand sells design-led ethical menswear, that seeks to minimise the impact on people and the planet.

Brothers We Stand requires the designers and brands that manufacture products in our collection to provide them with a full breakdown of their supply chains. They then summarise this and share it in their product ‘footprint’ tabs under each product on their website, for full transparency.

Every product in their collections also has a clearly demonstrated positive impact on people or the planet that goes beyond the norm. Examples of stand-out social impact include working to fair trade criteria, programmes of worker training and capacity building, or in-house production which allows greater control over working conditions. Meanwhile, examples of stand-out environmental impact include designing a product that will be used for many years, using more sustainable materials, and energy efficiency in manufacturing and transportation.


Budget: £

Cater for: sizes S to L

Cariki* is a London-based streetwear brand producing ethical clothing for the younger generation. Using a variety of materials, such as organic cotton and recycled polyester, they also ship their items plastic-free. 

Cock and Bull Ethical Mens Clothing

Budget: £ – £££

Cater for: sizes S to XXL

Cock and Bull Menswear are a dedicated menswear label based in East London. Here they manufacture small runs and limited edition menswear staples entirely in the United Kingdom. Their entire range is made from sustainable fabrics and textiles by UK-based artisans and textile artists with an emphasis on hand-made and hand-finished items. This enables them to continue a tradition of clothes making in the UK and reduces their carbon footprint.

Shop Cock & Bull for super stylish jeans, t-shirts, tweed jackets, bomber jackets, caps, and more. 


Budget: ££ – £££

Cater for: sizes XS to XXL

Finisterre is an ethically made and sustainable outdoor clothing brand, catering for men and women. They are a certified B-Corp. This independently verifies that Finisterre is committed to prioritising the environment and society in the way they do business. Finisterre is also committed to full transparency in their supply chain, and holding their partners to the same high standards they expect of themselves.

What I also love is that Finisterre has also carefully considered its packaging. In fact, In terms of packaging, all of Finisterre’s packaging materials are compostable or recyclable. And, to add, to that, Finisterre also offers a repair service.

Hiut Denim

Budget: £££

Cater for: sizes 28″ to 40″ waists and they offer a range of leg sizes

Hiut ethically makes beautiful bespoke jeans, handmade in Cardigan.  These are expensive jeans, but whilst the initial outlay might be high, expect a pair to last forever.  Hiut stands by their jeans even when they fail you. As such they offer free repairs for the life of your jeans, with just one rule. You have to send them back washed.


Budget: £ – ££

Cater for: sizes S to XXL

Howies produce active clothing for men that are ethically made. Using natural and sustainable fabrics, their clothes are designed to last as long as possible. Therefore, their t-shirts, jeans, and sweats are made from organic cotton which is Better Cotton Initiative and Oeko Tex certified. Their sport base layers are made from the highest quality Merino wool and their underwear is made using plant-based Modal fibres.


Budget: £ – ££

Cater for: sizes S to XL

As one of the original pioneers of ethical clothing, since 1988 all of Komodo’s products* are ethically made from sustainable fabrics. From GOTS certified and Soil Association certified organic cotton to linen, Tencel, and hemp. What’s more, they use traditional local manufacturing skills where possible. Komodo has a wide range of casual ethical men’s clothing.

Lost Shapes Men’s Ethical Clothing

Lost shapes t-shirt made in the UK

Budget: £

Cater for: sizes XS to XXL

Lost Shapes* sells organic cotton Earth Positive t-shirts and jumpers hand-printed in the UK with water-based inks. The quality is second to none and from experience, I can personally attest that each item washes really well.  My partner is still wearing a Lost Shapes t-shirt he got 7 years ago and it is still going strong!

Lyme Terrace 

Budget: ££

Cater for: sizes S to L

Lyme Terrace makes ethically made shirts, t-shirts, and jumpers, all of which are made in the UK.  Their small but perfectly formed collection is made with organic, recycled, and/or regenerated fabrics (such as recycled polyester).  They are transparent about their supply chains, and on their website, you can learn more about the factories that produce their clothes. 

Mangata London

Budget: ££

Cater for: sizes S to XL

Looking for men’s sustainable swimwear?  Good news then, Mangata London* makes contemporary swim shorts made with the environment in mind. Their collection uses a super soft fabric made from 100% recycled plastic bottles. Their range of premium swim shorts are made in small production runs in Romania, and the Mangata team works closely with their manufacturer to use materials efficiently to keep waste to a minimum. 

Monkee Genes

Budget: ££

Cater for: sizes S to XL

Monkee Genes are purveyors of organic bamboo jeans that are beautifully soft. All of their clothes are made in GOTS certified organic factories.  You can also find chinos, tops, and jackets in sizes S to XL. My only gripe is that Monkee Genes only come in two leg lengths – regular and long.  The regular leg length is 32″, so if you’re on the shorter side you may struggle with the fit.


Budget: ££ – £££

Cater for: sizes S to XL

Morcant* is a gender-neutral essentials label founded in Sheffield. Their aim is to make functional everyday clothing using high-quality & long-lasting premium fabrics. With sustainability at the core of the brand, each piece of their organic collection is crafted using certified eco-friendly materials and ethically manufactured in Bangladesh. 

Nudie Jeans

Budget: £££

Cater for: waist sizes 24″ to 38″ and a 26″ to 36″ leg

Nudie Jeans are ethically made from Fairtrade organic cotton and recycled cotton.  And if your Nudie jeans ever need mending you can pop into their London shop for a free repair service forever.  If you’re not London-based, then don’t worry, they can send you a repair kit free of charge.  Once your jeans are finally worn out, you can send them back to Nudie and they’ll recycle them into new jeans. Circularity at its best!

Organic Basics Men’s Ethical Clothing

organic basics ethical clothing for men

Budget: ££ – £££

Cater for: sizes S to XXL

One of my favourite men’s ethical clothing companies, Danish-based Organic Basics* sells men’s underwear, activewear, jumpers, hoodies, jeans, and more in sizes S to XXL. These are all made from organic and recycled materials.  Organic Basics say “The fashion industry is dirty – but it can be better. We constantly search for better innovation, we have a visionary use of sustainable materials – and a continued focus on ethical production” and I have to say I’m a big fan.  Use discount code WENDYOBC for 10% off your order.

Origin Africa

Budget: £

Cater for: sizes XS to XL

Origin Africa* is the UK’s first 100% not-for-profit fashion brand, making contemporary ethical and sustainable unisex garments in sizes XS to XL.  These are produced using 100% organic cotton and vegan-approved water-based dyes.  What’s more, profits are used to fund social enterprises in Africa.  These include projects around improving child health through proper sanitation, and female empowerment through skills training and education


Budget: £

Cater for: sizes XS – XXXL

Oxfam* has a super collection of secondhand clothes for sale on their website.  This means you don’t have to spend hours wandering around charity shops, where it can be tricky to find a good range of men’s clothing.  Instead, grab a drink and peruse their vast secondhand menswear collection from the comfort of your sofa.  Again, the sizes available vary, although they do have big, tall, and plus-size filters.  

Check out my guide on where to buy secondhand clothing online for more secondhand shopping ideas.


Budget: ££ – £££

Cater for: sizes XS to XXL

Patagonia* makes responsibly-made outdoor clothing designed to last and to be repairable.  Find hoodies, jumpers, shirts, jackets, t-shirts, trousers, jeans, and more here. Their website also gives advice on how to repair all Patagonia items, which is seriously useful.  And for any clothing that can’t be repaired then you can drop it off at a Patagonia store for recycling or repurposing. 

Playa London

Budget: ££

Cater for: sizes S to L

Playa London* has decided to make one thing, and make that one thing well: shirts.  All of their vegan shirts are made from 100% organic cotton and feature sustainably sourced wooden buttons instead of plastic ones.  What’s more, shirts are posted to you in plastic-free packaging. And to add to that, £3 from each purchase is donated to Plastic Ocean UK, experts in ocean plastic pollution, to help tackle ocean pollution.



Cater for: sizes XS to XXL

Rapanui is an Isle of Wight outfit focusing on eco-friendly and ethically made casual t-shirts, jumpers, jackets, and hoodies for men. My partner has bought many Rapanui t-shirts over the years, and from experience, I would say avoid the printed tops and stick with plain ones. This is because the paint doesn’t seem to last more than 6 months of regular wearing and washing before the ink starts to wear off.

Every product they make is designed to be sent back to Rapanui for recycling when it is worn out, which is really great. So great, because Rapanui make new products from the material they recover, and the cycle itself is renewable. In fact, their products can be returned and remade again and again and again. However, you don’t expect new clothes to wear out after 6 months. So stick to the unprinted clothes for the lowest eco-footprint and best value for money.


Budget: £

Cater for: sizes XXS to XXXL

Rokit* offers a huge selection of men’s vintage clothing online, catering for sizes XXS to XXXL.  This is the most inclusive sizing for men’s ethical clothing that I’ve found.  Their vast collection of pre-worn vintage & designer secondhand clothes means there is something for everyone. From sports, street, designer to vintage, whatever your style, Rokit stocks it.

Every item is cleaned and pressed before being added to the web page or sent to the store, meaning no nasty surprises either.

They have also developed our own Rokit Originals Range. This is a collection of reworked vintage pieces. This gives a new life to old garments and creates new items to be loved over the long term, keeping old clothes out of landfill.

Seasalt Ethical Men’s Clothing

Seasalt men's clothing

Budget: £ – ££

Cater for: sizes S to XXL

Seasalt* specialises in ethically made laidback leisurewear for men – including t-shirts, casual shirts, jackets, and other types of clothing.  Look out for GOTS-certified organic cotton products and waterproof fabrics made from organic cotton. In fact, Seasalt was the very first fashion company to achieve Soil Association GOTS certification in 2005, and they’ve continued to do great things by bringing sustainability to the high street at more affordable price points.


Budget: £

Cater for: sizes S to XL

If you’re looking for ethical hoodies, sweatshirts, t-shirts, and polo shirts for active lifestyles, then Silverstick* is the one to go to. 

Silverstick has put the outdoors and sustainability at the foundation of their design of your clothes, which they say you should “buy once, wear often, and love forever”. With ethically made men’s clothes made from high-quality organic cotton fabric and hand-printed with outdoor motifs in eco-friendly inks, you’ll definitely wear them often and love them forever.


Budget: £ – ££

Cater for: sizes XS to XXL

Thought* make easy-to-wear fairtrade clothing made from sustainable fabrics such as bamboo, hemp, and/or organic cotton.  These require less water, fewer pesticides, and create less CO2. What’s more, they upcycle their leftover fabric at the source so as to reduce waste and create new products. Find smart shirts for work here, as well as t-shirts, trousers, shorts, and jackets that are responsibly made.

The White T-Shirt Company 

Budget: £

Cater for: sizes S to XL

The White T-Shirt Co takes the mantra, do one thing and do it well. As such they make really well-made t-shirts in 100% GOTS certified organic cotton.  This means if you’re looking for the perfect ethical t-shirt (in not necessarily the colour white!) then do step this way.  And for an added bonus, you can take 10% off your first order if you sign up for their newsletter. 

Yew Ethical Men’s Clothing

Budget: £

Cater for: sizes S to XL

Yew Clothing make ethically made sports and casual wear for men, all of which are made from sustainable materials.  They only use eco-friendly materials like 100% recycled polyester, made from re-processed plastic bottles for their fleeces, performance tops, and base layers, or soft organic cotton for their t-shirts.

What Can I Do To Make Men’s Ethical Clothing More Accessible?

To make the ethical fashion movement more inclusive to all, then it’s important to take action beyond your wallet.

To help make ethical fashion more affordable, things that you can do to help engender change include asking High St brands who make their clothes (see Fashion Revolution for their great resources).  This will help press for transparency and sustainability on the High Street, making ethical clothing much more accessible for all.

You can also support Clean Clothes Campaign’s Pay Up drive, whereby they are pressing the global fashion brands that have refused to pay for over $16 billion worth of goods ordered since the outbreak of COVID-19. Big brands cancelled all orders placed before the crisis – some of which had already been shipped. This financially devastated factories since they had already had to pay for fabric and other production costs for these orders. Many were left with no money to pay workers’ wages.

As always, if you know of any other men’s ethical clothing companies/stockists that you think should be included here then do drop me a line!

ps: if you like this then you might also be interested in my post on ethical men’s underwear.