Girlfriend Collective is a slow fashion, ethical activewear brand that recycles plastic bottles to make its products. They believe in ethical manufacturing using recycled materials. Above all, they focus on being as transparent as possible and taking care of the people making the clothes, and the planet.
Facilities in Taiwan* manufacture the brand’s textiles from recycled materials. These facilities specialize in eco-friendly and high-quality textiles. It is then cut-and-sewn in an SA8000 certified factory in Hanoi, Vietnam*, that guarantees fair wages, safe and healthy conditions, and zero forced or child labour. SA8000 is a social accountability standard and certificate developed by Social Accountability International (SAI). This furthermore helps and protects workers worldwide. By providing a standardized guideline, the brand can protect the integrity of workers’ conditions and wages. Think Fair Trade but specifically for factory conditions.
They have a breakdown of exactly what kind of materials they use to make their products. Even down to the exact number of individual bottles they use to make each legging or bra. Girlfriend Collective’s Compressive Leggings and Bras are made from 79% recycled polyester (or RPET) and 21% spandex, where the leggings are made from 25 recycled post-consumer bottles and the bras are made from 11. Subsequently, they make their LITE Leggings from recycled fishing nets and other waste using ECONYL® yarn. The LITE fabric is 83% recycled nylon and 17% spandex. The tees and tanks are 100% cupro, a fibre made from waste the cotton industry leaves behind. They manufacture their cupro yarn in a zero-waste, zero-emission facility in Japan. They then send the yarn to their SA8000-certified factory in Hanoi. Furthermore, all products are BPA free, and they use eco-friendly dyes and carefully clean the wastewater.
They use 100% recycled and recyclable packaging. Their products even come in reusable pouches made with the same RPET as their bras and leggings.
Girlfriend Collective makes each of its leggings from 25 recycled post-consumer water bottles that would otherwise clog landfills and threaten wildlife. The brand is certified safe and guaranteed recycled by Oeko-Tex, unlike other facilities who buy unused water bottles to jump on the ‘recycled materials’ trend. By using ECONYL® they help to clean our oceans, recycle that waste. This also cuts out the need for raw materials like crude oil, which are traditionally used in the production of nylon.
Being eco-friendly is one of their top priorities, along with making high-quality products made with time and care. They work with facilities in Vietnam specifically as they have better manufacturing for their premium activewear than the USA. They value transparency and thus share all certifications to prove their fabrics are exactly what they say they are. Their recycling facilities in Taiwan are government certified. This means they implement extensive security measures in each facility. Moreover, they keep an account for how much plastic they take in and ship out.