Sustainable Swimwear in Panama

Looking for sustainable beachwear in Panama? Recycled materials, might not be the only way to help reduce the impact we’re having on the earth.

While polyester, polyamide, elastane, nylon, or spandex, the most common materials used in swimwear, are now being recycled to create fabrics made from recycled plastics, there might be more to choosing your sustainable swimwear. 

In the fashion industry, a couple of key factors are used in defining a garment as sustainable 1) the fabric that it’s made of and 2) the environment that it’s made in. But providing a fair work environment and using recycled materials might not be enough to make a brand sustainable. 

In an article with Vogue Jackie Savitz, chief policy officer at the nonprofit Oceana explained that “we can’t really collect, process and use it [plastic waste] fast enough. The real solution is to stop making so much plastic.” It’s the classic turn of the tap before your grab the mop scenario. 

The focus needs to be on reducing plastic consumption in the already existing operations of a company, and in our daily lives. This is not to say recycled plastics like Econyl made from discarded fishing nets are bad, they’re great, there are just more things to consider as a consumer.

First off, you might want to think about shopping locally. 

A number of smaller brands in Panama are trailblazing sustainable fashion. By shopping locally you reduce the amount of energy used in getting your garment to your door. And by working with a brand that takes orders, or someone who is only making a small number of garments, you are supporting a small-scale production, not a fast fashion brand that might be overproducing and creating a tonne of waste. Another bonus is that when you work with someone locally you can usually make personal requests like plastic-free packaging, and paperless invoicing, which are hard to make with a big company. 

Shop quality.

The longer it lasts, the longer it lives on. Fast fashion is made to fall apart, but quality-made garments are made to last. When we wash or throw away clothes made with recycled plastic they still end up in the ocean, so a longer-lasting swimsuit might still be better than a poorly made one even if it’s derived from non-virgin plastics. 

Who was it made by?

While the garment might be available locally, is it made locally? When you buy from a supplier who knows where their materials come from you can ensure sustainable practices are followed from the source. 
Don’t be afraid to ask, most vendors will be happy to share this info! 

Shop for timeless pieces.

Buy only what you absolutely love. Instead of hopping on and off trends, make your closet your own. Include only what you love now and will still love for years to come. 

Use a washing bag.

Microplastics come from your suit every time you wash it, if you wash it in a washing bag like the Guppyfriend bag, you can prevent them from getting into the water system.

Before you buy 

The most sustainable swimsuit is the one you already own.

When it’s time for a change, think about selling your lightly used beachwear in Coronado, before you buy new. There are two ways to sell clothes on consignment in Coronado. 1) Local markets like the Hippe Market in El Palmar, and 

you can also sell/donate lightly used clothing and household items using the playa community classifieds here. 

Here are 5 sustainable swimwear brands in Panama

1) Revoulta 

Andrea Villarroel, creator of Revoulta really encompasses what it means to be a sustainable brand with Revoulta. Since moving her headquarters to Panama City Andrea is also offering repair and up-cycling classes. Revolta’s newest swimwear line is made with recycled materials and the prints are a collaboration with local artist Insano, which makes them even more unique to Panama. Andrea also has a line made using recycled off-cuts pieced together using quitting techniques. 
@revolutawear | SHOP


Brug Swimwear offers fabrics that are certifiably sustainable and are 50+UPF. Each item is thoughtfully designed by a Panamanian artist and is hand sewn by female Colombian artisans. This brand offers vintage cuts, original prints, and high quality. Another great bonus is sustainable packing, there was no plastic, and even plantable tags that grow into flowers. @brugswimwear | SHOP 

3) Almeda 

Almeda swimwear created by Melissa Ramirez, is made in the small surf town of Cambutal Panama. Her new collection “The Ocean is our Home” offers a wide range of styles many of which work well for surfing and beach life in general. Melissa also uses recycled nylon for her suits, with prints inspired by original works of watercolour art. @almedaswimwear | SHOP

4) Paulina Sabioncello

This brand caters to sports enthusiasts by offering a range of suits that stay put no matter what you’re doing. Paulina Sabioncello uses LYCRA® EcoMade, a line created from pre-consumer recycled materials, and works with women heads of families to create each suit in Brazil. Find beachwear from bikinis, surf suits, and yoga wear in a range of bold and colourful prints in the online store here. TIP: There are several reversible, which are great options when creating a more sustainable wardrobe. @paulinasabioncello.panama | SHOP 

5) Kanél

Because sustainable beachwear should be for everyone! This young Colombian brand is bringing handmade swim shorts made from recycled plastic bottles to Panama. Shop Kanél on Panama’s most eco-friendly online marketplace.