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The Best NATURAL Fabrics For Active Wear Clothing | Plastic-Free Work Out Clothing Brands

If you're looking for natural fabric athletic clothing, you're in the right place! This blog post includes all the best fabric types and brands for exercise apparel (all made with natural fabrics). Perfect for those pursuing more "low-tox" lifestyle.


Disclaimer: This blog post contains affiliate links, which means if you make a purchase through one of my links, I may receive a small commission. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting my blog!


Most modern activewear clothing is made with synthetic fabrics (aka plastic). These common fabrics include: polyester, nylon, spandex, microfiber, acrylic, etc. Using plastics for clothing is not the best for the environment or for our health. And honestly, not as comfortable as natural fabrics either!


Important note: This article is not meant to encourage you to throw out your entire wardrobe to buy all new natural fabric clothing. It's just to give ideas for better alternatives when your clothes wear out or need to be replaced.


Keep in mind, when it comes to low-tox living you do not need to be perfect (and it's not possible to be). Small changes over time can make a difference. Go at your own pace and be proud of yourself for every effort you're making.


What type of natural fabric is best for exercising?


One of the very best natural fabrics for exercise is merino wool. I know what you may be thinking—won't wearing wool while exercising cause me to overheat? The answer is actually, no! Wool is an incredible fabric that's temperature regulating. It keeps you warm when it's cold, and can help cool you down when you're hot. That being said, when I'm going to the gym or exercising in warm/hot weather, I always like to wear thiner merino wool clothing. This helps keep me cool!


Alpaca wool is excellent for exercising, too. It is even softer than merino wool, because the fibers are smother.


Hemp is another great natural fabric for workouts. It's soft, breathable, and temperature regulating. It's also antibacterial, which makes it so it often doesn't smell as bad as other fabrics. I have some leggings that are a hemp/cotton blend that I really like using for exercise!


Cotton isn't quite as breathable and temperature regulating as wool and hemp, but it many people love it for exercise! It's a great option and usually cheaper and easier to find. Organic cotton is typically softer, more durable, and more breathable than conventional cotton—which can make a difference when you're exercising!


Where can I find plastic free clothing?


When it comes to exercise clothing made with wool, cotton, or hemp, it can be tough to find options that are 100% plastic free. Most options will have a certain percentage of synthetic fabric (even as low as 2-5%). Personally, I am not concerned with that low of a percentage of synthetics, but I do appreciate companies that use 100% natural fabrics!


Below I will list brands that offer 100% natural fabric clothing and also brands that offer mostly natural fabric clothing. You may also want to check out your local thrift shop to see if you can find some natural fabric clothing at a discounted price.


The Best Natural Fabric Exercise Clothing Brands (Plastic Free)



Woolly Clothing is one of my favorite activewear companies! They have merino wool tanks, tees, shorts, leggings, and underwear. They are my "go-to" clothing for rock climbing, hiking, and pilates.


Lots of their clothing is 100% merino wool, and some has a small amount of elastane in it. All are excellent quality!






Ridge Merino has a great selection of merino wool activewear! Their merino wool bralette is a staple in my wardrobe. So soft, breathable and comfy.


They have a collection of 100% merino wool clothing, but most has a small percentage of synthetic fabric in it. They also have a collection of merino wool and tencel blends, which is really nice for exercising too. Tencel is a semi-synthetic fabric.




Arm of Andes makes alpaca wool clothing, and it is incredible quality! They have different weights of fabric available for different climates and activities. I personally have a pair of their sweatpants and absolutely love them!


This company is actually 100% plastic free, which is rare to find. Arm of Andes is expensive, but such high quality. I'd recommend giving their clothing a try if it's in your price range.





Eco Aya makes organic pima cotton clothing, and is also 100% plastic free! Their clothing is so soft and durable. I love it for traveling or gentle workouts but usually prefer to wear merino wool when exercising.





Menique Clothing has some great merino wool clothing, and they are one of the few companies that sells 100% merino wool sports bras and underwear! Pretty cool.




Here are some other brands worth checking out:



I hope this blog post was helpful for you. If you have any suggestions for natural fabric exercise clothing brands, please leave them in the comments! We'd love to hear from you.


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