Are you looking to shop for ethical trousers but don’t know where to start? Let me help out with this handy guide to ethical and sustainable trousers for both men and women.
If you’re looking to build a more ethical wardrobe, then some ethical wardrobe essentials, such as sustainable t-shirts and jogging bottoms are pretty easy to find.
Then, on the other side of the coin, you’ve got trousers. Sustainable trousers are considerably more tricky to find, particularly for men. This has always surprised me. Trousers are such a wardrobe staple that you would think you would be spoiled for choice.
Thankfully, ethical brands are beginning to realise that consciously-minded shoppers want more choices than just jogging bottoms.
Guide to Ethical & Sustainable Trousers
If you are pressed for time, then don’t worry, I’ve done the leg work and put together a handy guide to the best sustainable and ethical trouser brands for men and women.
From Fairtrade and organic brands to UK-made brands and brands offering tall and petite ranges, there’s a wealth of choice. Some might even call it a leg-endary collection…!
The price range key for this guide is £ = Under £50 | ££ = £50 – 100 | £££ = £100+
Use the quick links below for information about each brand or keep scrolling for the full post:
⭐ Best for sustainable trousers made from hemp
Budget – £ – ££
Caters for Men (sizes 30 – 40) and Women (UK sizes 6 – 24)
Available from John Lewis
Thought features regularly in our sustainable clothing guides, and for good reason. Now offering more inclusive sizing, this ethical brand uses only certified natural and recycled fibres and fabrics.
Thought also ethically makes its clothes from start to finish in the same country. This prevents them from being shipped from country to country, for example, to add buttons or zips, which is a common practice within the fashion industry.
When it comes to sustainable trousers, Thought is a great starting point. For men, find smart and casual chinos, hemp canvas trousers and organic cotton trousers. And for women, find casual trousers in a wide selection of cuts and seasonal styles.
Knowledge Cotton Apparel
⭐ Best for men’s sustainable chino trousers
Budget: ££ – £££
Caters for: Men (sizes 27W – 38W and 32L to 34L)
Available from Brothers We Stand
Nature-loving Danish designers Knowledge Cotton Apparel make low-impact clothing for men, using sustainable fabrics and practices.
Available in the UK from Brothers We Stand, Knowledge Cotton Apparel specialises in smart chinos that would work for a day in the office or for a leisurely day in the sunshine.
Its chinos are made from 97% GOTS-certified organic cotton poplin. This is a lightweight and breathable natural fabric that helps keep you cool in summer.
All of Knowledge Cotton Apparel’s clothing is ethically made in India, in living wage and SA8000-certified factories. This is a leading social certification program that shows that the brand conducts business in a way that is fair and decent for workers. It also demonstrates Knowledge Cotton Apparel’s adherence to the highest social standards.
Get 10% off your first order when you sign up for the Brothers We Stand mailing list.
⭐ Best for sustainable trousers in petite and tall sizes
Budget: £ – ££
Caters for: Men (30 – 40 W) and Women (UK sizes 6 – 28)
Available from: Seasalt
Offering inclusive sizes, plus regular, tall and petite/short options, Seasalt has the best selection of extended sizes for ethical shoppers.
This UK clothing brand offers ethical style at reasonable High Street prices. We love that many of Seasalt’s clothes are made from GOTS-certified organic cotton.
In fact, Seasalt was the very first fashion company to achieve Soil Association GOTS certification back in 2005. They’ve continued to do great things by bringing sustainability to the high street, whilst catering for a wide range of sizes.
Offering sustainable trousers for men and women, find smart and casual options for almost every occasion.
⭐ Best for casual ethical trousers
Budget: £ – ££
Caters for: Men (sizes S – XL) and Women (UK sizes 8 – 16)
Available from: Immaculate Vegan
Komodo sells ethically sourced, organic, and natural fibre fashion that’s every bit as stylish as it is ethical.
Komodo makes its clothes with premium quality organic, natural, and eco-friendly fibres. Plus, as one of the first-ever ethical clothing brands – running since 1988 – the majority of Komodo’s products are vegan and cruelty-free.
And as a member of 1% for the Planet, Komodo donates to the Sumatran Orangutan Society. This charity is restoring natural rainforests and ecosystems, through the purchase and repurposing of palm oil plantations.
Catering for men and women, its sustainable trousers tend to veer into casual territory. Think weekends and holidays rather than days in the office.
Get 10% off your first order when you sign up for the Immaculate Vegan mailing list.
⭐ Best for men’s ethical trousers made in Britain
Caters for: Men (sizes S – XL)
Available from: Brothers We Stand
Yarmouth Oilskins is a UK heritage brand, based in Great Yarmouth, that has been making coastal workwear for over 100 years.
True to its heritage, it continues to manufacture its clothing in the same Great Yarmouth factory, using traditional methods and many of the original patterns maintained in its archive. Many of its staff are also longstanding – they have been with the brand for over 25 years.
As well as making its clothing in Britain, Yarmouth Oilskins uses British suppliers where possible. This means most of its fabrics are sourced in the UK – mostly from mills in Yorkshire and Lancashire.
Its fabrics are also OEKO-TEX certified. This means every component of the finished product, from the fabric to the thread and accessories, has been independently tested, and found to be free of up to 350 toxic chemicals.
Offering smart ‘work’ trousers and casual ‘deck’ trousers, both are hardwearing and designed to improve with age. True to this, Yarmouth Oilskins’ philosophy is ‘buy well, buy once and then wear it to death. Every mark and repair is a story.’ Something I’m sure we can all get behind!
As I find more brands, especially more size-inclusive brands, I’ll be sure to update this guide. So do check back here the next time you are looking for that perfect pair of trousers.