Queen Elizabeth and her brood might be known for their fancy gowns, bespoke suits, and opulent jewels, but despite the grandeur, the wardrobes of the British royals are fairly eco-friendly. For one thing, almost every member of the royal family has been known to repeat outfits, which is sustainable in itself (reduce, reuse, recycle). Prince Charles famously hates waste of any kind, and has even dabbled in his own sustainable fashion line. As for Princess Diana, not only did she rewear outfits, the Princess of Wales even had a few pieces remade into completely new designs (recycling!). For her wedding day, Princess Beatrice’s dress and tiara were loans from the Queen’s closet, and she rewore the shoes she wore to William and Kate’s wedding. The late Prince Philip is said to have worn the same pair of black shoes for more than 70 years. And in 2019, the Queen announced she would no longer wear real fur.
But when it comes to fashion, no royals are watched more closely than Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle, both of whom have style influence on a global scale. When one of them is seen wearing something, it’s almost certain to sell out immediately. It’s a responsibility that both Duchesses take seriously, as they have each used their fashions to make statements about the kinds of brands they support. Here, find some of Kate and Meghan’s favorite sustainable and ethical fashion brands.
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This ethical London-based brand is behind some of Kate’s most popular looks, such as this dress she sported in September 2020. The brand is dedicated to fighting human trafficking and labor exploitation. The Duchess of Cambridge also been spotted wearing other items from Beulah, including their Yahvi dress and Ahana Blush dress.
McCartney is one of Middleton’s most frequently worn designers, and this blue dress is one of the pieces she recycles most often. Focusing on eco-friendly materials and technologies, as well as a transparent supply chain, Stella McCartney has held sustainability at the forefront of their mission since the brand’s inception in 2001.
Of course, Meghan is a big Stella McCartney fan, too. She’s worn the designer on multiple occasions, but most notably when she stunned in a custom-made McCartney gown on her and Prince Harry’s wedding day. After the dress went viral, McCartney redesigned the style using a plant-based textile and made it available to customers.
The Duchess of Sussex’s closet also has a fair share of Reformation pieces, including this dress, which she wore on a visit to Fraser Island in October 2018. The Reformation brand was quite literally built on sustainability and ethical practices; they’re already climate neutral and have vowed to be climate positive by 2025.
The royals are certainly no strangers to jewelry with special meanings. Such is the case for Kate’s Trio Diamond Midnight Moon Necklace—which features the first initial of each of her children’s names—from Daniella Draper. The Duchess of Cambridge favors the necklace and has worn it repeatedly, such as during this appearance in January 2020. From the metals they use to the suppliers they work with, sustainability is a central value at Daniella Draper.
Any royal watcher will recognize these sneakers from Veja, which frequently grace the feet of Meghan, Kate, and even Princess Beatrice. The brand participates in fair trade practices, transparent supply chains, and uses ethically sourced and recycled materials.
MORE: 29 Photos of the Royal Family Wearing Sneakers
During a visit to Courtenay Creative in Wellington, Meghan Markle chose an ethically made blazer dress from New Zealand designer Maggie Marilyn. The label practices sustainability in a multitude of ways, such as using materials that meet the Global Organic Textile Standard and compostable packaging.
Theory is a popular American fashion label beloved (even by royals) for their fashion forward styles, ethical sourcing, and sustainable manufacturing. Meghan sported this off-the-shoulder plaid top during a trip to Cardiff Castle.
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