In the world of apparel and outerwear Patagonia is the reigning king of recycled materials and environmentally-minded manufacturing and distribution practices. Hell, the Synchilla has used recycled polyester made from plastic bottles since 1993. Fast forward 25 years and fellow Californians Everlane announced this week it would commit to removing all new plastic from its supply chain by 2021 (coincidentally, this week the European Parliament voted for a complete ban on a range of single-use plastics—a ban that is planned to go into affect in 2021 as well). The first step for Everlane, the ReNew collection of well-designed fleece and puffy jackets for men and women made with 100% recycled polyester fabric.
I’d like to snarkily type “better late than never!” but the reality is too few brands are taking such steps, especially not company-wide, so we’re actually quite hyped on this move. Plus the product is solid.
Of the five men’s styles and eight women’s (which are considerably stronger as a whole), a handful stand out. We’re especially digging the recycled pile fleece sweaters for both men and women, the men’s parka, and women’s half-zip pullover puffer. It’s all cozy, and guilt-free. lol.
As transparency has always been a sturdy brand pillar for Everlane, each product in the collection directly states the number of plastic bottles “renewed” in the creation process—35 bottles recycled per fleece sweatshirt, 60 bottles per women’s long puffer and men’s parka, etc. To put those numbers into perspective, a running ticker sticks to the top of the Everlane homepage and ReNew collection page, indicating the number of new plastic bottles made since the page was opened. In the time it took me to write this, nearly 20 million plastic bottles were reportedly produced. Yikes.
As with all recycling efforts, this will make the biggest difference if others get on board—if other brands take a good look at the global impact they are having and decide to do something about it too. In the meantime, as consumers, the next best thing to not buying anything new is supporting brands leading the charge towards a more conscious and sustainable future. (Then again, this could just be another greenwashed marketing ploy by an evil VC-backed corporation… in which case, shit.)