Men’s Clean List 

JUMP TO:

Denim | TEES | WEEKDAY Looks | KNITwear | Weekend Looks | COMFY STUFF

ATHLETIC | TRENDSETTING

Sneakers | Shoes & Boots | OUTERWEAR | OUTDOOR

Undies | ROBES | SwiM | Hats | SUNGLASSES & GLASSES

I require 2 criteria of every brand I recommend:

(1) Sustainable - What is it made of? I look for natural fibers that will biodegrade, like linen, hemp, bamboo, cotton, wool, silk, cupro, tencel, viscose, rayon, and modal. I prefer that cotton be organic. I don’t love recycled polyester, but I allow it for outdoor, athletic, swim, shoes/sneakers, and accessories, where there may not be many alternatives. Leather - veggie tanned leather is very trendy right now in sustainability, but it isn’t the only sustainable solution. I allow responsibly produced chromium tanned leather as well. When there is an alternative to leather - whether Pinatex (pineapple leather) or recycled leather (old jackets or couches remade into new jackets or bags), I encourage you to save a cow & consider those options first.

(2) Ethical - Who made it? I look for living wage, fair trade, or production in a low risk country like the US, EU, UK, Japan, etc.

** - Two Asterisks = Check Fabric. The company produces ethically and most of their products are sustainable, but they may use some regular cotton or polyester. Certain gorgeous artisan cotton fabrics are not yet widely available in organic (African wax fabric, certain Peruvian textiles), but I couldn’t bear to exclude them from the list. Check the fabric content on the tag or garment’s web page before purchasing, and I suggest avoiding polyester.


denim

How do you find the perfect pair of jeans? I have devised a simple decision tree to help. :)

(1) Are you committed to the hipster selvage denim look? Do you hate being able to bend your knees? If yes, head straight to Dearborn Denim (US, Chicago), Imogene + Willie (US, Nashville), or Black Horse Lane Ateliers (UK). Nudie Jeans (Sweden) also has selvage options.

(2) Do you reside, or do you plan to reside in Brooklyn? Do you need edgy, non gender specific jeans that can both shield you from inclement weather AND be a conversation piece? If yes, then you want AndAgain Co.

(3) Is Justin Bieber your style icon? No judgment here, be your bad self! Head straight to G Star Raw and don’t look back.

For every other man:

  • Start with a brand local to your country. This will keep shipping costs low if you want to try more than one pair & return the extra.

  • Start with a slim fit. A slim fit is like a tailored suit - it’s neither the skinniest nor the loosest option, and it looks good on most heights and builds of men. Most men who want a very skinny jean or a loose jean will already know this about themselves.

What wash should I get?
Lighter wash - Generally the most casual option, also currently on-trend. I would recommend a light wash for a weekend hangout, a very casual work environment, or a casual night out. You can wear lighter wash jeans with tees, button downs, and flannels.

Darker wash - More formal. If you usually wear a suit to work, and your workplace has a casual Friday, choose a dark jean. It’s not out of style, but it’s not in style. Pair with tees, buttondowns, even a blazer. (PSA: A suit jacket is NOT a blazer!)

Gray and black jeans - Youthful and cool. Wear these in a creative work environment or to hang out or go out on weekends. Pair with tees or buttondowns, with a hoodie or a blazer. The world is your oyster.

Selvage & Specialty Denim

USA

Europe & Australia


Tees

USA

Europe & Australia


Weekdays

USA & Canada

Europe & Asia


Knitwear


WeekendS

USA & Canada

Europe & Australia


Comfy Stuff

USA

UK & Europe

Asia/Pacific


Athletic


Trendsetting

USA

Europe & Australia


SNEAKERS

Every man needs a great pair of kicks!

The first row below are options for the gym - Adidas, Brooks, and Reebok. The rest are fashion sneakers, for hanging out, a creative work environment, or a casual night out. A pair of Vejas, for example, will look good with everything from jeans and a tee to an unstructured suit.

Vegan options - I do not endorse wearing vegan leather when it means virgin plastic. The vegan brands that I’ve indicated offer plant leather options like Pinatex (pineapple leather) and apple leather, or textile options. They may also offer plastic vegan leather - please check the materials & avoid that! I recently bought a Pinatex handbag, and I think you’ll be impressed with its durability.

Gym Sneakers

Fashion Sneakers


Shoes & Boots

USA & Canada

UK & Europe


Outerwear


Outdoor

USA & Canada

Europe & Aus/NZ


Undies


Robes


Swim


Hats


Sunglasses & Glasses