I feel like the biggest part of a growing business is a growing network. You start sending out emails, reaching out to manufacturers, possible business partners and customers. So when I started realizing how many more calls, presentations etc. would come up on a daily basis I realized: I never really looked into sustainable business fashion.
For a long time sustainable fashion has had to fight with prejudices such as, that it is a very one-sided, not very stylish and, above all, not worth the money. To be fair, these prejudices have a point. However, what many people have not realized, is that these prejudices are slowly fading away and tend to not be true anymore. I guess people who have been showing interest in sustainability realized that convincing people requires meeting them halfway. Consequently: sustainable fashion started adapting to trends, different styles and basically: to what people desire.
So let’s get to the point of this article! I started doing research and ended up coming across a lot of brands which offer exactly what I was looking for: casual business pieces, which embody not only professionalism, but a style appropriate to the time which is seen in other conventional big brands.
no1 - nu-in
I originally found nu-in, as it is promoted by German influencers who talk about sustainable fashion & lifestyles. The interesting aspect about the brand is that the sustainability part was not what convinced me of taking a closer look, I simply liked the styles the store has to offer and then found out it is sustainable as well! Basically, I found the whole package!
Overall, the brand wants to show how sustainability and affordable fashion can coexist. Furthermore, they are very transparent about every single product by pointing out what it is made out of, where it is produced and also what the product is packed in. No matter if it is recyclable, approved vegan material or water saving, they’ll let you know!
nu-in is showing a very classy and european style. They mainly focus on one colored pieces and have very unique cuts to offer styles for everyone. By offering a wide range of products, from denim styles, business dresses to workout fits, the brand shows that sustainability comes in all different shapes. Personally I really like how their styles can be worn throughout the day as well as for casual business purposes. :)
no2 - saenguin
Saenguin is a brand which caught my interest due to their very inspiring mission: they want to dress women who shape the future. By promoting confidence and femininity, they do not only sell beautiful business outfits, but also encourage their customers to work on their goals. Saenguin is furthermore a brand which promotes sustainability in multiple ways: all of the materials used are either recycled, upcycled or biodegradable. On their website, they show a chart which gives customers a good idea of how the company is performing in contrast to fast fashion brands. For instance, while a fast fashion company would use 1,700ltrs of water, Saenguin only uses 290ltrs. In addition, the average labor wages are significantly higher and the waste accumulated is at just 2%, while fast fashion brands show about 35%.
Saenguin is still a comparatively new brand and therefore has a small product portfolio. However, the products they are selling are very classy, high quality pieces like suits and blouses. So far, the suits come in 3 different colors including black, blueberry and pinstriped.
no3 - aritzia
Aritzia was founded in 1984 and offers a comparatively wide range of products, which go beyond business casual styles. However, looking at their online store, you will notice that there are many pieces like blouses, jackets and different types of pants which can be perfectly combined for a business casual look.
When it comes to sustainability, the brand has a lot of information on how it wants to make a difference. Besides different projects and collaborations, the aritzia offices, distribution centers and stores are offset with 100% renewable energy. Furthermore, the brand is emphasizing their belief that the difference starts with raw materials, which is why they use materials like sustainable cotton.
As mentioned before, Aritzia has a very diverse product range from casual shirts, over bomber jackets to vegan leather clothing. Many pieces have a very minimalistic design which I personally like a lot. Also, if you are someone who likes to combine clothing - this is probably a shop you want to take a look at! Many pieces like vests or colorful jackets can be combined well with anything you already have in your closet! :)
It's so exciting to see how more and more brands are showing how sustainability does not mean to compromise. Are there more brands like these you would like to share with us? Let us know!