20 gorgeous sustainable summer dresses from UK brands 2022
Summertime, the time of year that you can finally ditch those tights and put on something floaty and flattering! If you’ve been looking to give your summer wardrobe a refresh, we’re here to help you seek out some ethical brands for your next favourite summer dress!
But where can you find sustainable summer dresses in the UK, without breaking the bank?
If supporting eco-friendly brands and ethical factories is important to you, here’s how you can spot truly sustainable clothing brands and get your hands on a holiday-worthy sustainable summer dress!
What makes a fashion brand sustainable?
These certifications attest that no toxic chemicals have been used during the treating of the fabrics, a key point when looking for brands that don’t put their workers’ health and the environment at risk for the sake of stylish pieces!
The mainstream fashion industry is also infamous for unfair labour standards, so you can expect sustainable brands to also be transparent about working conditions under their supply chain.
The best sustainable summer dresses for UK shoppers
So, what are our top picks for sustainable summer dresses in the UK?
We’ve ranked some of our favourites in order of price, with the most affordable at the very top:
1. Beyond Retro
Price: £16 – £65
Sustainability creds: Sells 100% pre-loved clothing.
If you’re looking for the most affordable and unique vintage dresses to step into the summer with, look no further than Beyond Retro.
Arguably the biggest online retailer for vintage pieces, this is the perfect stop for finding pre-loved dresses and supporting second-hand fashion — a great alternative for reducing your carbon footprint without adding to the demand for new clothes, no matter how sustainable they might be!
Made in: China, Portugal, Romania, Turkey, India
Price: £39 – £75
Sustainability creds: Uses FSC-certified viscose, organic cotton, BCI cotton, and OEKO-TEX certified finishes.
Omnes is another affordable brand creating beautiful and sustainable summer dresses in the UK. Their designs range from gorgeous floaty everyday dresses to those reserved for special occasions.
The company has partnered with Earthly, a carbon-offsetting project, to become carbon positive, and it exclusively uses eco-conscious materials for all garments, including LENZING ECOVERO (made from wood sourced from responsible forests) and organic cotton.
The brand also shares the wages and working hours of its factory workers in full transparency. We’d love to see more brands with such transparent and ethical practices!
Made in: China, Vietnam, Greece, India
Price: £29 – £95
Sustainability creds: GOTS cotton, sustainable fabrics, factories using standards such as SMETA, GOTs and Oeko-Tex, sustainable packaging and labels
UK based Albaray has a great range of sustainable summer dresses from t shirt dresses to midi dresses. They come in linen, organic cotton and sustainable viscose, and designs are anything from floral to spotty to animal print. Something for everyone.
The brand regularly visits its factories to ensure standards are upheld and states that they use a range of ethical standards.
Based: Penzance, Cornwall
Made in: India
Price: £32 – £85
Sustainability creds: Uses GOTS-certified cotton, closed-loop viscose, and recycled fabrics.
Inspired by the beauty of Cornwall, Seasalt offers lightweight, sustainable summer dresses for UK shoppers who want to support sustainable and ethical manufacturing.
The brand uses GOTS-certified organic cotton, linen, and Tencel, and only works with factories that adhere to the Ethical Trading Initiative base code, of which Seasalt is also a member.
5. Nobody’s Child
Made in: Bangladesh, China, Morocco, Ukraine
Price: £35 – £95
Sustainability creds: Uses certified organic cotton, GRS-certified recycled synthetics, and Bluesign certified chemicals.
London-based brand Nobody’s Child offers affordable mini, midi and maxi dresses in classic floral patterns and colourful prints.
The company uses eco-friendly fabrics for most garments, including organic cotton and LENZING ECOVERO viscose, as well as recycled polyester.
When it comes to the finishing process, all chemicals must be either GOTS, OEKO-TEX, or Bluesign-certified.
6. Nomads Clothing
Made in: India
Price: £47 – £78
Sustainability creds: Uses GOTS-certified organic cotton and sustainable viscose.
Established in 1989, Nomads Clothing offers an extensive collection of dresses, with half of their entire collection being made from GOTS-certified organic cotton and a quarter from FSC-certified viscose.
A member of the of BAFTS Fairtrade Network, promoting Fair Trade retail in the UK, the company is committed to ethical trading and works almost exclusively in SEDEX and GOTS-certified facilities.
It also uses exclusively non-toxic dyes for all garments reducing its environmental impact further!
7. Joanie Clothing
Made in: China, India
Price: £48 – £55
Sustainability creds: Uses organic cotton, recycled materials, and sustainable viscose.
Though not 100% eco-friendly, Joanie offers some of the best vintage-style and sustainable summer dresses in the UK, all very affordable.
The brand is very transparent about what items in the collection are made from sustainable materials like organic cotton and recycled synthetics.
Joanie is a member of SEDEX and has audited 70% of factories through the initiative.
Made in: UK, China, India, Portugal, Turkey
Price: £69 – £89
Sustainability creds: Uses organic cotton, REACH-certified dyes, sustainable viscose, and recycled synthetics.
The company is also a member of the Made In Britain initiative and exclusively works with ethically audited factories.
Made in: India
Price: £75 – £100
Sustainability creds: Uses deadstock fabrics and organic cotton. Offers a recycling scheme.
The company is registered as a social enterprise, giving back part of all earnings to charities in India and providing all local workers with fair wages and training opportunities.
Jenerous uses Fair Trade organic cotton for dresses and deadstock fabrics to create its girls’ collection, as well as using eco-friendly dyes for printing.
Made in: Nepal, Indonesia, India, China
Price: £55 – £110
Sustainability creds: Uses GOTS-certified materials, recycled PU and PET plastics, and sustainable fibres.
Established in the late 80s, Komodo is a pioneer in the world of ethical dresses.
The brand uses recycled plastics to create unique and versatile dresses, all made from sustainable and natural fabrics including GOTS-certified organic cotton, Tencel, hemp, and bamboo fibre.
11. Organic Basics
Based: Copenhagen, Denmark. Has a dedicated UK website and stocks at Liberty, London.
Made in: Turkey, Italy, UK, Portugal
Price: £55 – £110
Sustainability creds: B-Corp certified, uses organic cotton and sustainable fabrics like Tencel.
B-Corp fashion brand Organic Basics features a great collection of everyday dresses and basic pieces made with eco-friendly materials, including GOTS organic cotton and Tencel.
The company exclusively works with ethical European factories that allow no forced or child labour, pay a living wage, and ensure a safe working space.
Made in: China
Price: £49 – £130
Sustainability creds: Uses GOTS-certified materials, 100% organic cotton, Tencel, and hemp.
Thought offers a wide and versatile range of summer-ready dresses, all made with sustainable materials like GOTS-certified organic cotton, Tencel, LENZIG ECOVERO, hemp fabric, and recycled polyester.
The brand’s fabrics are also OEKO-TEX and GOTS-certified, and they are manufactured exclusively in ETI-audited factories.
Made in: Malawi
Price: £39 – £159
Sustainability creds: Uses organic cotton, natural dyes, and deadstock fabrics.
Mayamiko is the fashion brand of the Mayamiko Trust, a social enterprise operating in Malawi born with the mission of teaching trade practices and transferable skills to disadvantaged local women.
The brand works in close partnership with the charity and offers colourful designs and prints for their unique summer dresses, using GOTS-certified organic cotton and plant-based dyes for the majority of garments, all made in a solar-powered workshop in Lilongwe.
14. People Tree
Made in: Bangladesh
Price: £59 – £155
Sustainability creds: Uses GOTS-certified materials, organic cotton, and sustainable fabrics like Tencel.
People Tree is one of the most well-known sustainable brands in the UK, offering a great collection of GOTS organic cotton, linen, and Tencel summer dresses.
Most of the brand’s products are certified by Fair Trade International, and People Tree itself is also a member of the WFTO Guarantee System, ensuring that garment workers are compensated fairly for their labour.
15. Saint + Sofia
Made in: Italy, Portugal, Bulgaria, Turkey
Price: £69 – £179
Sustainability creds: Uses exclusively GOTS organic cotton and sustainable fabrics.
Saint + Sofia is the place to go for a classic floral dress!
The brand uses 100% GOTS cotton for all designs, as well as Tencel and eco-friendly viscose.
It also participates in carbon-offsetting initiatives and employs smart transporting to cut carbon emissions, choosing road freight and electric vehicles throughout.
Made in: Portugal, Romania, Bulgaria
Price: £79 – £179
Sustainability creds: B-Corp certified, uses sustainable viscose, recycled fabrics, and organic cotton.
Baukjen is another B-Corp certified brand offering a wide range of light and flowy summer dresses, relying on organic cotton and LENZING ECOVERO for most designs.
Rated in the top 5% of all B-Corps worldwide, Baukjen is a proud Living Wage employer and requires all factories to sign a strict code of conduct, based on the ETI code.
17. Blonde Gone Rogue
Made in: Bulgaria
Price: £88 – £158
Sustainability creds: B-Corp certified, uses organic cotton and deadstock fabrics.
Blonde Gone Rogue is a B-Corp company making some of the very best sustainable summer dresses in the UK — think feel-good prints for the day and backless mini dresses for a great night out!
The brand uses either end-of-roll cotton or organic cotton for dress designs, and manufactures all products in a small factory in the Bulgarian owner’s hometown.
18. Ninety Percent
Made in: Bangladesh
Price: £65 – £195
Sustainability creds: Uses organic cotton and sustainable fabrics like Tencel.
Ninety Percent is the master of essential designs, featuring a wide range of summer dresses for all occasions.
The brand uses exclusively GOTS cotton and Tencel for its dresses, and manufactures all products in traceable factories, audited for health and safety by an undisclosed third party.
19. Beaumont Organic
Made in: Portugal
Price: £85 – £250
Sustainability creds: Uses GOTS-certified organic cotton and OEKO-TEX certified materials.
Beaumont Organic offers maxi and midi sustainable dresses for all occasions, using GOTS-certified cotton for the majority of its collection as well as linen pieces.
On top of offering a pre-loved collection packed with affordable dresses, the brand also offers a repair and resale scheme to ensure products are made to last, easing the pressure on our landfills!
Based: USA Ships to: Worldwide and has stores in London
Made in: China, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Pakistan, Turkey, USA
Price: £70 – 705
Sustainability creds: Climate-neutral certified, aim to be climate positive by 2025, use of sustainable fabrics, use of deadstock materials
Based in the US but with stores in London, Reformation’s mission is to ‘bring sustainable fashion to everyone’. They make beautiful pieces that create elegant silhouettes and effortlessly celebrate the feminine form. Their dresses range from mini dresses to silk wedding dresses, with everything in between including linen styles and kids’ dresses.
Utilising low-impact fabrics, deadstock and repurposed vintage clothing, Reformation has given classic, timeless style a modern edge.
While it started as a small vintage store in LA, it now designs its own cute styles. They offer free express shipping and returns worldwide.
Building a sustainable summer-ready wardrobe
If you want to start building a capsule wardrobe to last for many summers to come, it’s worth taking a closer look at how your dream dresses are made and what sustainable practices manufacturers have to ensure that the entire supply chain adheres to truly eco-friendly and ethical standards.
Thankfully, from pre-loved clothing to pieces made from low-impact fabrics, online shoppers are really spoiled for choice when it comes to finding sustainable summer dresses in the UK!
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