Bamboo underwear has been bandied about in the sustainable clothing world as a more eco-friendly option. While bamboo itself is a fantastic choice from a sustainability perspective, underwear that claims to be made of bamboo does not really exist. Rather, bamboo is often processed into rayon or viscose. And while that doesn’t necessarily take it off the greener underwear list, it can make it a less sustainable choice than it should be.
To get the best results, you need to choose a brand that produces their bamboo knickers using the Lyocell (Tencel) process. This is a closed-loop system that uses solar power for production and recycles the water used to wash and stretch the fabric.
One great option is Cariloha, which makes GOTS-approved (Global Organic Textile Standard) bamboo lingerie. Their thongs, boyshorts and bikinis are made of 95% bamboo viscose and 5% spandex. Their underwear is soft and breathable so it’s comfortable all day long and won’t ride up. They also have a wide range of sizes from US size five to quintuple extra-large (5XL).
Another brand that produces a good quality set of bamboo knickers is Boody. Their women’s bamboo underwear is made from 80% bamboo rayon and 7% spandex. Their underwear is soft, breathable and odour-resistant. And like Cariloha, their underwear is sized to fit the way you want it to with no gaps and extra support where needed.
Lastly, we have Warm Sun. Their women’s bamboo knickers are 95% bamboo viscose and 4% spandex. They have a lot of options including bralettes, high waist and low waist undies and G-string thongs. Their underwear is odour-resistant and hypoallergenic so it won’t irritate your skin or cause chafing. They have a good range of sizes from US size five to US size 10.
All in all, bamboo underwear isn’t the worst thing out there but it’s not the greenest option either. Hemp, on the other hand, is a more sustainable choice for a triangle bralette or that high waisted bikini. Hemp requires no pesticides, doesn’t need to be replanted, and can absorb up to five times more carbon than trees.