Making environmentally conscious shopping decisions in today’s retail landscape isn’t as easy as it should be. With Earth Day, April 22, right around the corner, we’re paying a daily homage to notable up-and-coming labels that are rooting their ethos and manufacturing processes in creating sustainable products.
A quick peek at Instagram would make it seem like swim brands have taken over the fashion industry. Every other day a cute, new, millennial-catered swim label makes itself known with bright rainbow prints, sleeved bikini tops, and the requisite round-up of chic, indie models. But where swim newcomer OOKIOH also encompasses all those attributes, it has a leg up on its competitors: Straight out of the gate, the entire launch collection will retail for under $100 and be made from 80% recycled materials.
It's not often we come by many new swimsuit brands that run on the "affordable" end of the spectrum. And though we don't knock the fact that manufacturing quality swimwear is definitely pricey, it's difficult for the masses to justify dropping $400 on a pseudo-underwear set soon to be saturated in chlorine and/or sea salt. Unfortunately, that leaves a large gap for fast-fashion retailers to fill, which often results in a slew of knock-off accusations and lesser quality suits that people are more likely to buy. And with swim trends changing up as often as they have, we wouldn't blame them.
But OOKIOH seems to strike a balance. Launched the last month, the L.A. based swimwear brand is disrupting the idea that high quality does not always have to result in a high price. Led by an all-female creative team (albeit a male founder), OOKIOH's birth resulted from the previously noted price gap for quality suits. The brand describes its primary goal as "providing style-forward and conscious fashion swimwear at an affordable price point." And it seems to have taken that pretty seriously. OOKIOH's final product is a line-up of sustainable swimwear, all for less than a new dress from Zara.
According to the brand, its name is a play on the Japanese word Ukiyo, which is a literal translation to "the floating world" defined as "the pleasure-seeking lifestyle of the Edo Japan period and the famous Ukiyo-e woodblock prints that emerged from it." Ukiyo-e is meant to "depict scenes of travel, landscape and female beauty, celebrating living in the moment and escaping the bothers of life." Whimsical speak for the fact that OOKIOH's bright, primary color schemed minimalist suits invoke a heavy dose of travel lust and an itch too book an Instagrammable beach vacation, ASAP.