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Five from Finland

Sustainable fashion

Sustainability is in fashion in Finland.

Julia Helminen

Providing alternatives to much-maligned fast fashion, Finland is home to many brands dedicated to sustainable and ethical practices.

It’s not news that the fashion industry is considered one of the most polluting industries in the world. Luckily, more and more fashion producers and consumers are doing their part to halt the industry’s environmentally and socially harmful practices by shifting towards more sustainable materials, less resource-intensive ways of manufacturing and more responsible choices.

Finnish companies are leading by example. Helsinki-based men’s fashion house FRENN has been inspiring positive change in the industry since 2013 and topped Pro Ethical Trade Finland’s sustainability report for domestic clothing brands twice, winning praise for its climate work, as well as transparent and ethical production processes. Sustainability and transparency are also at the heart of Pure Waste. Born from a vision to address the immense waste problem in fashion manufacturing, the company produces garments solely from recycled fibres. A deep commitment to the ethos of “no new materials” is in the DNA of Globe Hope as well. The Nummela-based company manufactures clothing and accessories by upcycling discarded materials.

Below are five more Finnish fashion companies and brands working hard to make a difference in the industry.


With its versatile garments, Morico promotes a more mindful way of consuming fashion.

Morico / Facebook

Founded in 2015 by Tytti Alapieti and Jenni Koli, a duo of clothing industry specialists with a shared passion for snowboarding, MORICO challenges the norms of fast fashion and encourages a shift towards more sustainable consumption patterns and production methods.

The company’s approach to fashion is holistic, emphasising the use of eco-friendly materials, such as organic cotton and recycled polyester. Rather than having seasonal collections, MORICO opts for continuity and production according to demand and available materials. Versatility is another crucial factor. All garments are designed to be suitable for multiple purposes, from everyday use to special occasions. And many are reversible.

“[Our] unique collections are inspired by nature and sustainable materials,” noted Alapieti. “Circular design is one of our goals, and we strive to increase the use of recycled materials and move towards zero-waste design thinking.”


Halla Halla stands out for vibrant designs and eco-friendliness.

Halla Halla / Facebook

Finland’s first sustainable swimwear brand was born out of two friends’ quest to find their perfect bikinis. To the surfers-turned-entrepreneurs, Hanna Chalvet and Salla Maisonlahti, “perfect” meant looking fabulous, being comfortable to wear and, most importantly, eco-friendly.

Halla Halla uses a high-quality fabric made of recycled plastic waste – such as bottles, bags and fishing nets – collected from landfills and oceans around the globe. Inspired by the diverse beauty of nature that needs to be preserved for future generations, Chalvet and Maisonlahti design all the pieces themselves, and the swimsuits are ethically manufactured in Bali, Indonesia.

The idea has taken over the world, with orders flying in from everywhere and new collections quickly selling out online. All Halla Halla items are shipped to their new owners in biodegradable bags or can be picked up in person from its downtown Helsinki shop.

“It was clear to us from the start that we wanted to combine eco-friendliness and fashion in our swimsuits. These were two things we didn’t want to compromise on,” Maisonlahti told us a few years ago.


Founded by three young entrepreneurs, Cuitu creates accessories from top-quality circular materials.

Cuitu / Facebook

Turku-based Cuitu has built an entire business model around sustainability. Cuitu’s modern accessories for urban people are made from deadstock materials, as well as the leftover materials of selected production companies, such as cutting surplus from diving suit production. Previously, Cuitu has also collaborated with entities known for their sustainable textile innovations, including Spinnova and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland.

In addition to using innovative materials and following a zero-waste policy, Cuitu focuses on minimalistic, functional and often unisex designs while capturing the essence of trendiness. Such an approach disrupts the typically seasonal nature of the fashion industry and makes investing in Cuitu’s items worthwhile.

“We acknowledge that the mass production of fashion can’t keep going the way it’s going now, with several collections each year and changing fads that make their way to consumers through cheap fast fashion,” co-founder Vilma Piironen explained. “However, trend-conscious people will always want to stay on top of things. We’re not trying to make people stop buying, but rather our aim is to help them to be trendy by choosing materials that can be reused and recycled.”


Népra’s products are crafted for individuals who value sustainability as much as they do their fitness and wellbeing.

Népra / Facebook

Founded in 2015 by textile professional Essi Enqvist and CrossFit enthusiast Anna-Mari Niutanen, Népra is a sustainable activewear brand aiming to create long-lasting items, ensure ethical production and stay transparent throughout the entire process. The brand encourages all sports lovers and active people to make more responsible choices.

Népra’s clothing is designed in Finland, the certified toxic-free fabrics come from a family company in northern Italy, and the products are manufactured by a partner in Estonia. Its less sporty and more casual collection, Lazywear, is produced in collaboration with Pure Waste, an innovative garment company with a focus on recycled materials.

“The actual design process starts with ideation, sketches and the mapping of alternatives already on the market, so that we don't launch a product that is already available,” CEO Enqvist told, adding that nothing gets wasted throughout the design and production process.

“We try to utilise the waste that comes in small products, such as scrunchies.”


Costo brings a playful twist to the headwear scene with its line of hats featuring replaceable pom-poms.

Costo / Facebook

Founded in 2006 by a group of friends with backgrounds in design and fashion, Costo sees its mission in creating “sustainable, high-quality headwear that brings joy and inspiration to the world”. The brand's signature approach involves repurposing leftover and surplus materials from the textile industry, transforming them into stylish, durable products.

“I was fresh out of school, working at an interior design store, where I eventually realised that fabric swatches of sofas were thrown away after each season,” reminisced Hannes Bengs, co-founder of both Costo and Pure Waste. “My brother Anders had made hats as part of his clothing design studies, and it turned out that one piece of a swatch was enough to make one hat. So, we thought: Let's start here; it's ecological.”

Beyond its environmental initiatives, Costo places a strong emphasis on craftsmanship and ethical production practices. The hats are handmade in Tallinn, Estonia, while the beanies are crafted in Yli-Ullava, Finland. Costo’s timeless designs reflect a blend of Nordic minimalism and urban sophistication, complementing any wardrobe and ensuring years of use.

By: Zhanna Koiviola