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It’s almost winter in the Southern Hemisphere and here in the land down under, we’re hunkering down, donning our comfiest and warmest attire and rugging up on the couch under layers of blankets. As the cold temperatures keep us as locked in our homes as COVID-19, we thought we’d compile a list of our favourite ethical and eco-friendly must-haves to endure the winter chill.
Winter and cosy socks fit together like a hand and glove; the cosier the socks the toastier the toes too. We’re obsessed with the eco-friendly pairs of socks from Australian circular brand UPPAREL made from recycled cotton (A$30 for two). We’re also loving Conscious Step‘s range of fairtrade, organic cotton socks featuring environment inspired prints. For everyday minimalist style, there’s Organic Basics vegan “PETA approved” socks made from organic cotton and available in modern colours to suit your fashion tastes. If you’re after thicker socks, there’s Boody’s Chunky Bed Socks (A$14.95) made from bamboo viscose .
A 2020 pandemic lockdown essential, loungewear tops our list of things to outfit repeat during the winter months. If you’re one of those people who didn’t buy a set and are now in the market to purchase loungewear, we recommend checking out responsible brands such as UNIEK, Kotn, Pact and Organic Basics. For a comprehensive list of ethical loungewear, check out this post.
Wearing an additional layer will help keep you warm as well as stop you from turning on central heating (a sustainable lifestyle move if we do say so ourselves!. A snuggly robe makes a perfect extra layer to wear over your sleepwear or loungewear. We recommend the luxuriously soft, organic cotton robes from Coyuchi and ettitude‘s waffle robe made from bamboo viscose. Check out this post for a complete list of ethical and sustainable robe options.
Bearaby‘s weighted blankets are super popular and once you give them a try, you’ll understand why. Super Instagrammable, the blankets are produced without artificial fillers or synthetic fabrics. Buttery soft and breathable, Bearaby hand knitted blankets are also made of eco-friendly fabrics. Our pick is the Cotton Napper (US$249) which is made from long-staple GOTS-certified organic cotton produced in India with manufacturing processes that use 90% less water than conventional methods. The blanket comes in a variety of contemporary colours including evening rose, butternut bliss and midnight blue and is the perfect blanket to snuggle up on the couch with.
No winter survival toolkit is complete without comfy knitwear. New Zealand label Kowtow is just the place to discover the right styles. The conscious brand produces a minimalist and contemporary range of knit jumpers, turtlenecks and cardigans made from eco-friendly textiles such as GOTS-certified organic cotton and natural fabrics such as mohair and wool. Designed in New Zealand and manufactured by factories in India that are SA8000 certified and meets high labour standards.
Australian ethical brand Obus Clothing produces quality clothing featuring natural fibres such as Merino wool and cotton and its exclusive print designs. While the majority is produced in Melbourne, its knitwear is produced offshore in factories that meet the company’s ethical standards and is BSCI accredited and is audited annually.
Can’t afford brand new knitwear or prefer second-hand clothing? Make sure to browse online marketplaces such as Facebook, Etsy, eBay and Depop.
Knit wraps and shawls
It’s only natural to want to wear layers in winter to stop your bare skin from feeling the crisp, cool air. Bundling up in knit wraps, shawls and scarves will help to keep your body temperature warm inside and out. We’re loving the vibrant Minna Dunes Wool Scarf (US$347) ethically handmade in Uruguay using 100% wool. There’s also the Boody heavyweight knitted shawl (A$114.95) made in premium organically grown bamboo if you prefer staple colours such as grey and white.
If you’re an avid reader but don’t have the space for more books in your home and don’t want to face the freezing temperatures just to borrow library books, a Kobo eReader (starting price US$149.95) will help solve those problems. It will allow you to indulge in your love of books whilst saving you the money over the long-term (the money you would have spent on books). The best part is that you can borrow eBooks from most public libraries and read them on your Kobo eReader – free of charge.
Netflix binge-watching is even better with a good vegan wine in hand and if you have a taste for wine, look no further than the vegan-friendly box from Naked Wines. If you’re looking to coast through the next few months in the comfort of you home, supporting independent Australian winemakers while you do it. You can rewatch episodes of the award-winning This Is Us with wine glass in hand whilst trying not to ball our eyes out, again.
In-home spa treatment
There’s nothing like a good wellness ritual to improve the mood and manage those winter blues and that’s where House of Medicinals comes in. This purpose driven wellness brand delivers plant-based, all-natural eco-conscious products to inspire everyday feel good moments that promote a sense of calm and relaxes the mind. Draw a bath, light up one of their hand poured Pure Essential Oil Candles and let the soft scent and ambiance wash your worries away. Add the Bath Tea, a blend featuring sea salts, oats, pure essential oils and natural botanicals in a plastic-free, biodegradable tea bag for a soothing and hydrating bath experience. Finish your treatment with their Bath & Body Oil, massaging it into the skin for nourishment and hydration.
The moody temperatures can cause the blues but a cup of tea can help to bring a sense of wellness to your day. Certified B Corporation T2, who have been overhauling their business model over the last couple of years to ensure it meets high standards of social and environmental responsibility, have a huge selection of teas to choose from. There’s are novelty teas such as the highly rated Creme Brulee, and herbal teas such Lemongrass and Ginger loose leaf tea, and traditional teas such as English Breakfast and Early Grey. Whichever tea blend you decide, make sure to savour the moment.
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Disclosure: This curated list does not fully take into account all ethical considerations that are unique to each individual. Before making a purchase, we encourage you to do your own research paying particular attention to the supply chain and your own particular set of ethics. Prices are correct at time of publishing. For more information, click here.
Cover image via Bearaby.