How to Be a “Material Girl” at the Beach


After a particularly awful bought of pneumonia, I am finally getting out of bed and heading on a beach adventure!
Although packing for a beach vacation is pretty self-explanatory (bathing suit, sunscreen, etc.), as I continue to focus on becoming more eco-conscious, I have become a material girl, but not in the way you think.
There are plenty of companies using greenwashing techniques to convince you that you’re buying something good for the planet, but whether there is truth to that claim comes down to the materials used.
Hemp, bamboo and natural rubber have all made the grade, and are currently in my beach bag, and here are three companies that are using these materials in their collections to make outstanding eco products.
 

The Fourth Gentlemen

You cannot embark on a beach vacation without sunglasses. and decidedly one of the most fashion-forward sunnies brand is The Fourth Gentlemen. All of their sunglasses and watches are made from the highly sustainable bamboo. For those unfamiliar, bamboo is actually a grass, and one of the fastest growing materials. It’s also incredibly strong and mimics the look of wood.

My favorite of the sunglasses collection are the Komodo glasses. They are both chic and sophisticated and have a slightly vintage, 1960’s look to them. They are also polarized, rust resistant, provide 100% UVA and UVB protection, incredibly lightweight and the best feature of all – they float – so, you’ll never have to worry about losing sunglasses while in the water!

Beyond using environmentally friendly materials, TFG also donates a portion of each sale to a number of different foundations committed to helping our planet and all of its inhabitants

So, chuck your cheap plastic sunglasses, and go with a “gentlemanly” pair.

real rubber flip flops

Olli

Another required item for lazy beach days, are flip flops, but unfortunately, almost of all of them are made with plastic power. Enter Olli. These sandals may look identical to the $1 pairs available each season, but that is the where the similarities end. Naturally biodegradable, these flip flips are made from real, fair trade rubber, and offer the comfort (no toe rubs here!) and foot support that you wouldn’t find anywhere else.
Olli is currently in the midst of an IndieGoGo campaign, so if you want to have a sustainable summer, make sure to back the brand. You’ll not only be helping them, but you will receive a fantastic discount, and help to employ the mostly female rubber workers around the globe.

prana beach wear

prAna

Obviously, clothing is another packing essential, and with the stylish, versatile and, of course, sustainable clothing from prAna, you will be ready for every adventure. Comprised of “doers” (think: yogis, climbers, and world travelers) prAna has mastered looking good while playing hard. Their collection is made from a variety of earth-friendly materials including organic cotton, recycled wool, and hemp.

When shopping the site, I decided to go with the super soft and light as air Liana Sweater and the comfy Mantra Pant in what I’m calling “life proof” (read: stain resistant) cargo green.

Both pieces are extremely versatile, going from the plane to the beach, or a yoga studio to brunch. I’ve even mixed up the pieces and paired with other sustainable items from my closet, which is an easy way of reducing the number of items you pack.

If you love these items as much as I do, be sure to use the promo code ib4pGZ for 15% off any order at prAna.com!

Other Eco Essentials:

I receive complimentary product and was compensated for this post. All opinions are my own. 

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