10 Pairs of Ethical, Eco-Friendly Underwear for Men and Women

Underwear can be ethical and eco-friendly, too! Unfortunately, it often gets shuffled to the bottom of the heap when discussing sustainable fashion, but this mainstay of our wardrobes deserves some attention. Here are some great options for the next time your underwear drawer needs a refresh.

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PACT Apparel: Men's Pioneer Stripe Boxer Briefs, $20

credit: PACT Apparel

Certified fair trade and sweatshop-free, and made from cotton without pesticides, bleaches, or fertilizers, these boxer briefs are a truly ethical choice. PACT Apparel, which Maggie recently wrote about for TreeHugger, specializes in soft, comfortable basics for both men and women. Check out the big summer sale currently on their website.

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Naja: Women’s underwear from basic to luxurious, $16-28

credit: Naja

Naja is committed to the empowerment of women. Its female garment workers in Colombia are trained within the to create high quality and attractive panties and bras won’t break the bank. Styles range from lacy thongs to cotton boy-shorts, and are made with pima cotton from nearby Peru. Naja offers free U.S. shipping for two or more items.

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Bazsarózsa: Diamond Lace Hipster Brief, $28

credit: Bazsarózsa

The underwear made by this New York City-based company are basic, comfy-looking, and attractive. This hipster brief is made with organic cotton and spandex jersey and comes in 4 colours.

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Dada: Men's Quarterly Underwear Club, $95 for 4 pairs in 1 year

credit: Dada Underwear

This UK-based company makes an interesting offer. You choose your style, size, fabric, and colour at the beginning of the year, and Dada will deliver one pair every three months – free shipping to anywhere in the world. Its underwear is made ethically in Sri Lanka, where transport and meals are provided for workers. The fabrics are made from seaweed and bamboo.

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Brook There: Coral White and Silver Underwear (3 pack), $79

credit: Brook There

Handmade in Portland, Maine, with fabrics coloured using low-impact dyes, this 3-pack offers 2 bikini- and 1 hipster-style undies. All items from Brook There are made in small batches, with a focus on high and lasting quality.

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Hanky Panky: Bandana Original Rise Thong, $23

credit: Hanky Panky

Known as “the world’s most comfortable thong,” Hanky Panky has been making its now-famous underwear for 30 years. All fabrics and trims are knitted in the U.S., and production takes place in a factory in the Northeastern region. Packaging is made from 100 percent recycled materials, and all fallout fabric is donated to arts and crafts groups.

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Flint and Tinder: Men's KS1 Sport Basic Briefs, $29.50

credit: Flint and Tinder

Flint and Tinder, which started out selling this same model of underwear for a hugely successful Kickstarter campaign, boasts about being "the first, only, and best premium men's underwear manufactured in this country in our lifetime." Made of pima cotton with a touch of spandex, these have a plush elastic, tagless label, and innovative wrap-around seaming. If you're not happy with it, the company refund you fully. Flint and Tinder also carries some good options for women.

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Clare Bare: Astral Cinched Boy Short, $32

credit: Clare Bare

Made to order by a Los Angeles-based designer, these cute undies have a cinched back and double inseam at the front. Clare Bare lingerie is made from bamboo jersey and vintage fabrics, and are designed to flatter the body naturally and comfortably, without being constrictive.

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Luva Huva: Women’s Stripe Knicker, $27

credit: Luva Huva

On the pricier end of the scale, the underwear made by this UK company is entirely handmade using sustainably sourced fabrics, including 100 percent organic cotton, bamboo, and soy fabrics, as well as vintage lace and end-of-the-line remnants. Matching sets available. Luva Huva delivers worldwide.

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Pants to Poverty: Men's Fly Front Underwear, $29

credit: New Internationalist Shop

These comfortable underwear are made with 95% fair-trade cotton, with a bit of elastane. They come delivered in a recycled cotton booklet and, while based in the UK, deliver worldwide. Pants to Poverty sells its underwear in 20 countries while supporting 5000 cotton farmers in India and putting a portion of proceeds toward developing "child-labour-free cotton programs in developing countries all in the spirit of fashion, charity, and ethical consumerism."