Boxers, briefs, Y-fronts, long johns – the choice is endless. But how can you make sure your choice of underwear is as good for the planet as it is for you? And how do you avoid that pesky greenwashing? We’re here to help! Read on for what to look out for, and for our roundup of the best brands on the market.
What does an eco-friendly pair of pants look like?
Ideally, your underwear will be made of natural materials and will biodegrade when they reach the end of their lifecycle. But you need to consider other factors too – like the amount of water used to make the fabric and any pollution produced during the process.
If you really want to boost your eco-credentials, look out for bamboo, hemp or lyocell/modal (which are made from wood pulp). It’s also important to think about the carbon footprint of your underwear (how far it has travelled throughout the supply chain), and whether the people who made it are paid a fair wage.
We’ve done the hard work for you and gathered our favourite options below – read on!
The best eco-friendly men’s underwear brands on the market
Thought are a real staple of planet-friendly clothes shopping, and they have some great options for your smalls drawer. Made from organic cotton and bamboo, you can choose from a range of styles, patterns, and colours.
Their boxers come in at £15 a pair, and Thought offer 3-for-2 and 15% off your first order to sweeten the deal.
Boody are well known for their soft bamboo loungewear, and are a certified B Corp company, meaning that they meet higher standards of social and environmental impact. Boody’s underwear features seam-free construction and a ribbed waistband for ultimate comfort and breathability, no matter what the weather.
They offer boxers, briefs, and trunks, with the option to buy a 4-pack for £40.
We love Everlane’s transparency – they offer a cost breakdown of their products at every stage of the supply chain, from materials to labour and transportation. So you can see exactly what your underwear costs to make! Everlane also partner exclusively with ethically-run factories and use US-grown, long-lasting Supima cotton for their boxers.
Boxers and briefs sit at £27 but can cost as little as £10 in the sale.
Boxers, sports trunks, briefs: you name it, this company have made it out of bamboo. BAM are aiming for impact positivity, with a goal of achieving a carbon footprint of zero by 2030 – and not just that, but zero waste, zero pollution, and zero wasted water too.
Prices start at £15 a pair but we found some for as little as £5.40 in the sale, so keep an eye out!
Made with GOTS-certified organic cotton in a fair-trade factory, Pact’s underwear comes in a range of fun patterns as well as your classic black. Pact’s eco-friendly credentials extend to their packaging, which uses recycled paper and cardboard, and organic plastic that can fully biodegrade within a few years of being put in the trash.
Pact’s underwear is priced at around £18 but you can snap them up for £10 a pair in the sale – and
Pact offer a great 20% off for new customers.
If you like to keep things simple, this is the brand for you: Chief & Turtle’s bamboo boxers come in black, white, and grey, and you can choose from the ‘original’ or ‘long’ lengths. This company is all about encouraging its customers to aim for progress, not perfection, on their sustainability journey, and you can shop by which values matter most to you – from natural fibres to where the products are made, and from vegan to unisex products.
Boxers are available from around £14 a pair.
Allbirds are better known for their eco-friendly trainers than for underwear, but they are definitely worth checking out – you can choose from trunks or longer boxer briefs made from a cosy and breathable mixture of lyocell and wool. The underwear is available in a range of dreamy colours from Hazy Sienna to Kaikoura White – it sounds like a Farrow & Ball colour chart, and we’re not mad about it!
Boxers start at £20 a pair.
A sustainable makeover
Looking to deck out the rest of your wardrobe with sustainable garms? We can help you out with that too. Our browser extension pops up with ethical and sustainable alternatives for products when you’re shopping online, making it easy peasy to buy better.