Best Eco-Friendly Fibers for Swimwear

Eco-Friendly Swimwear - Organic and Recycled Natural Fibers

What’s better than finding the perfect swimsuit for the summer? Knowing that your swimwear is made of eco-friendly materials. Sustainable swimwear brands strive to give you options that meet your performance expectations while limiting their impact on our ecosystem. Recycled synthetic fabrics and classic natural fibers can both be the basis of cute, comfortable, and environmentally-conscious women’s swimsuits and even swim accessories like water shoes.

When looking for a swimsuit from an environmentally-conscious brand, there are a few different materials you can expect to find. From biodegradable fibers to fabrics made from recycled water bottles, these textiles each have their own unique benefits. Next time you’re shopping for a sustainable swimsuit, be on the lookout for these fabrics:


Hemp is a popular choice when it comes to eco-friendly, natural fibers. And it’s easy to see why–you can cultivate hemp without the use of pesticides, and the production process is actually carbon negative. This means that it removes more carbon from the atmosphere than it produces, practically eliminating its carbon footprint.

Hemp fabric is naturally resistant to UV rays, making it ideal for soaking up the sun poolside in sun protective swimwear. It’s also anti-microbial, helping you stay fresh and clean while lounging in your swimsuit. By taking advantage of hemp’s natural properties, you can avoid many of the chemical treatments used in traditional synthetic swim materials. When you choose a hemp suit, you can enjoy the perfect combination of durability, comfort, and practicality.


Cotton is another natural fiber that you can find in emerging sustainable swimwear lines. You can find swimsuits made of organic, fair trade cotton that avoids harmful fertilizers and pesticides, protecting the ecosystem from the very first step in the manufacturing process.

Because water and humidity can have an impact on the elasticity of cotton, brands may use a blend of cotton, hemp, and synthetic fabric to give you the perfect, durable stretch. A cotton blend gives you the benefits of sustainable, natural fabrics without sacrificing any functionality. If you’re looking for a comfortable, breathable material for your swimsuit cover up, cotton is super cozy when you’re relaxing out of the water or heading home after a long day at the beach.


ECONYL is a nylon material that transforms nylon waste from oceans and landfills into a renewable fabric. ECONYL uses advanced recycling methods to not only reuse, but fully regenerate nylon material, taking nylon components from discarded items and restoring them into a new piece of material. The recycled waste becomes a good-as-new performance nylon, which has become a staple for both activewear and swimwear. Then, when your swimsuit reaches the end of its life, that material can be infinitely regenerated again and again. If you’re used to the comfort, style, and stretch of a nylon swimsuit, ECONYL may just be the perfect sustainable option for you.

Amni Soul Eco Thread

When making environmentally-conscious fashion choices, it’s important to think about where our clothes go when they’re no longer usable. Amni Soul Eco Thread is a material that puts this idea to the forefront. Garments that use this recycled yarn can biodegrade in just five years once in the landfill, compared to the tens or even hundreds of years it takes for traditional plastic to decompose. But just because it’s biodegradable doesn’t mean it’s not durable–Amni Soul Eco Thread is strong and stretchy enough to make the perfect one piece swimsuit or pair of men’s swim trunks.


REPREVE is the ultimate in renewable synthetic fabric, deriving its fibers from recycled plastic bottles–over 34 billion of them as of 2023. Because REPREVE’s manufacturer employs tech to verify the recycled content of its products, you can trust that REPREVE products align with your values. When you opt for a swimsuit made from REPREVE, you know that it began as a hunk of plastic polluting coastal communities.

REPREVE fibers are highly versatile and are used in everything from footwear to home goods, but they’re especially effective for swimwear. Stretchy, moisture-resistant, and temperature-regulating, REPREVE offers a high-performance material that comfortably hugs your body.


Yulex is similar to neoprene, but with an eco-friendly twist. Flexible, insulating, and durable, Yulex is ideal for wetsuits and high-performance swimwear. Its stretch comes from the natural rubber of the Hevea Tree–which is also carbon-negative.

Yulex first hit the swimwear market in 2012, and there are several companies that incorporate it into their sustainable swim lines to create green options for surfers, snorkelers, divers, and cold-water swimmers. Lightweight enough for athletic maneuvers in the ocean, but hearty enough to protect you from the elements, Yulex is a top-tier swimwear material. It shapes to your body and keeps you warm when hitting the cool ocean waves, letting you leave non-renewable neoprene in the past.

Each of these fibers has its own set of advantages, but they all sever the same purpose–to make the planet a better place. Instead of choosing between sustainability and performance, you can pick out swimwear that checks all of your boxes. From lightweight bikinis to heavy-duty wetsuits, the world of swimwear is embracing natural, recycled fibers.


Related Articles