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Top Eco-Friendly Winter Gear
There’s a revolution happening with sustainable materials! Here at Wayaj we’re discovering winter products that are not only vegan, but eco-friendly as well.
One such material is “Thermore Ecodown,” a feather free filler that keeps you warm even in frigid temperatures; then there’s a luxurious faux fur made from recycled PET plastic, and ski poles made out of bamboo, just to name a few.
Manufacturers are using aids like the Higg Index, a suite of tools that enables brands to accurately score a company or product’s sustainability performance. “REACH certified” is a regulation of the European Union which was adopted to improve the protection of human health and the environment from the risks posed by chemicals. It also promotes alternative methods for the hazard assessment of substances in order to reduce the number of tests on animals.
So, with sustainability in mind, we’ve put together a list of the best eco-friendly winter gear to keep you warm, toasty and dry all season long!
Columbia Alpine Traverse Jacket
Columbia products are known for their quality and environmentally friendly materials and practices, and the Alpine Traverse Jacket™ for women and men is no exception. Made with water-resistant fabric, it’s perfect for everything from outdoor adventures to running errands. All Columbia products are measured using the Higg Index, a suite of tools that enables brands to accurately score a company or product’s sustainability performance. For that reason you’ll never find their products, even water-resistant ones like the Alpine Traverse Jacket, made from perfluorinated compound (PFC), which can harm the environment.
People Tree Winter Accessories
People Tree was established over 30 years ago and is considered one of the pioneers of fair trade fashion. Its winter products feature a collection of hand knitted and embroidered women’s cardigans, scarves, warm socks and more, made of eco-friendly fabrics such as fair-trade Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certified organic cotton and other ethical and sustainably sourced natural fibers like wool. GOTS is the world’s leading textile processing standard for organic fibers. People Tree’s hand-knitted scarves and gloves are made by an organization that employs 2,500 artisans in Nepal under fair-trade conditions. By using skills such as hand weaving, hand knitting or hand embroidery People Tree creates employment in rural areas where work is often scarce.
Fabulous Furs began with a passion for animals and the belief that cruelty-free fashion could be achieved. Featured on “Oprah’s Favorite Things,” They’re a classy, synthetic alternative to natural fur. The collection offers soft, luxurious alternatives for mink, fox, and shearling some with vegan leather trims. Check out the throws, which are perfect for hunkering down on a snowy day. With small, medium, and large sizes you don’t have to be cozy alone! They also have coats and jackets for women, men, and kids.
Love Thy Beast Hoodies and Sweaters
Even our doggies can be eco-friendly with an ultra-soft hoodie by Love Thy Beast, a company committed to minimizing environmental impact. Made with bamboo knit fleece, bamboo trees are fully sustainable, regenerate in 55 days, and require little irrigation. The cozy bamboo knit textile in navy blue and pink is perfect for pups that might normally experience allergies since it’s hypoallergenic. It’s also machine washable and dryer safe and comes in sizes from XS to XXXL! Their navy, pink, and grey pom pom sweaters are fair-trade products as well and provide employment to craftswomen in Nepal.
BHAVA Aspen Winter Hiker
Handcrafted in Spain from vegan leather with brass hooks and contrast stitching, the BHAVA Aspen Winter Hiker women’s boot comes in black, ivory, and natural. Each pair includes a second set of colorful laces so you can switch up your style whenever the mood strikes. The insoles are removable and can be taken out and air-dried or replaced with orthotics. Best of all, these boots are REACH certified. REACH, a regulation of the European Union, was adopted to improve the protection of human health and the environment from the risks that can be posed by chemicals. It also promotes alternative methods for the hazard assessment of substances in order to reduce the number of tests on animals. Consequently, you’ll never find any PCP, formaldehyde, phthalates or other harmful toxins in BHAVA products. The company’s tagline, “Thoughtful by Design,” means that they source products ethically and under fair trade conditions and are committed to lessening fashion’s impact on the planet.
Hoodlamb Nordic Parkas
The men’s Nordic Parka by HoodLamb features a natural, water-resistant hemp and organic cotton herringbone outer shell, which means it’s light and sturdy. The inner shell is insulated with “Thermore Ecodown,” a feather free filler that keeps you warm even in frigid temperatures. The parkas are lined with natural hemp and the removable faux fur trim is made from recycled PET plastic but you’d never guess by looking or feeling the soft, fluffy material. Did you know that hemp is the only CO2 negative textile fiber, meaning its growth actually reduces carbon emissions in the atmosphere!
Drysure Ski Boot Dryers
While most ski boot dryers use batteries or electricity, Drysure has no power source and can be reused over and over again, making the product a more sustainable option compared to the normal type. Drysure boot dryers come in two styles: Active for low ankle footwear like running or cycling shoes and Extreme for ski and snowboard boots. Their unique design consisting of moisture-absorbing silica oxide beads surrounded by a shell that helps airflow, allows wetness to be absorbed from your damp or sweaty ski boots twelve times faster than regular air drying. Drysure boot driers also help reduce bacterial and fungal growth, which improves odor.
Phunkshun Wear Thermal Tubes
Add your own eco-friendly style to the slopes with a funky and functional Phunkshun Wear® Thermal Tube. Use graphics of your own design or choose one of their cool designs. These ski and snowboard facemasks are made out of plastic bottles that are recycled into yarn. Plus, they provide UV protection and the fabric has DWR (Durable Water Repellent) properties. Phunkshun Wear Thermal Tubes are also treated with a microbe-inhibiting odor-control application, which keeps your mask smelling better, longer. All scrap fabric generated is collected and recycled back into fabric. Phunkshun Wear also makes Ballerclavas® (balaclavas), and scarves.
Kamik, a Canadian, family-owned company has been making boots for men, women, and kids since 1898. With classic designs, seam-sealed waterproof construction, and 3MTM Thinsulate™ insulation, their winter boots and rain boots will keep you warm and dry. Their footwear is made using a low consumption process thanks to hydroelectricity, reusing water, and a 100% material waste-recycling program. With these greener manufacturing initiatives, they’re doing everything they can to reduce their carbon footprint. Even their boot liners are made from plastic bottles!
Shred Optics Ski Goggles
Scraps recycled from making snowboards, as well as organic cotton and reclaimed rubber, go into Shred Optics ski goggles, which look as good as they perform. The goggles utilize ShredWide™ technology, a unique lens and frame design that enables riders to see more of what’s ahead and around them for fantastic peripheral vision.
Shred’s Contrast Boosting Lens™ enhances image definition, contrast, and the vividness of colors in a broad range of light and weather conditions. For even more visual clarity, Shred’s patent pending NoDistortion® technology uses a semi-permeable valve to equalize the pressure between the dual lens chamber and current atmospheric conditions. The company also supports the efforts of the non-profit group “Protect Our Winters” to combat climate change and educate the public about its effect.
Niche creates super cool snowboards using environmentally conscious materials and manufacturing practices. Their boards are produced in a factory that runs off 100% hydropower and boasts zero CO2 emissions. All manufacturing waste and the products themselves can also be recycled. The wood cores are made from sustainable poplar, paulownia, and bamboo and the inks used are non-toxic and water-based.
With an environmental footprint that is 40% less than conventional skis, you’ll be feeling as light as the powder underneath you when cruising the slopes on a pair of Grown Skis. Made from hemp and over 70% certified sustainably harvested wood and held together with pine tree resin-based glues, Grown Skis are designed with environmental performance in mind. The skis also feature a recycled base and use reinforcing fibers from volcanic basalt rock instead of glass and carbon fibers. Last year at one of the leading sports trade fairs in Europe they presented the first skis with a 100% industrial hemp fiber-paulownia wood composite core construction. The use of hemp fibers is a substitute for non-renewable fibers like glass and carbon.
Grass Sticks Bamboo Ski Poles
Bamboo ski poles have taken the skiing world by storm in recent years. They’re lighter, stronger, better looking, and better for the environment than the average aluminum or carbon fiber pole. Grass Sticks Bamboo Ski Poles are amongst the most sustainable, high performing ski poles in the world. But that’s not all! The straps are made from 100% recycled polyester and you can also order customized ski poles to suit your color preferences and height. These poles will definitely spark conversations on the lift line!
Holmenkol Natural Ski Wax
It’s easy to forget about the lasting impact some products have on the environment and ski wax may not be the first thing that springs to mind. However, according to the team from Holmenkol Natural Wax, when one skis down a slope, small bits of wax come off.
Any wax that contains fluorocarbon will stay in the snow until spring then run off into rivers and lakes, affecting the local ecosystem. Yikes! Holmenkol developed a biodegradable hot wax bar for all snow types and temperatures that is fully biodegradable while still fast and long-lasting.