Ethics & Sustainability

Here at Tiwala Swim, we love Mother Earth! But we're not fond of fast fashion, sweatshops, waste, unethical pay, etc. We want our practices to reflect our beliefs. Here's how we accomplish our goals!

One way we combat excessive fabric waste is by creating only when necessary. Having our suits & accessories be made-to-order not only increases the ability to customize pieces, but it also reduces our waste. Because swimsuit fabrics are created from plastic, reducing the amount that doesn't directly go to the customer is extremely important. Microplastics are another area of concern for swimsuits. What many don't know is that microplastics are released from your swimwear when you put them through the washer/dryer. These microplastics can then find their way to the ocean, which harm the environment, animals, and can even affect our food supply. We encourage you to hand wash/dry all of your sets from us to reduce microplastics from being released. (See more at 'How to Care.')

Thankfully, as a one-person operation, our carbon footprint is already eons smaller than large, incredibly wasteful clothing companies. To make sure we keep this footprint as tiny as possible, we only restock when necessary from local and/or small businesses. When available, we will purchase fabrics that are deadstock, made from recycled materials, and/or created in ethical/sustainable ways. For example, many of the fabrics we have in stock are OEKO-TEX Standard 100 Certified (this guarantees that the fabric has no harmful substances to human health) and HIGG Index Certified (marks a product's sustainability throughout its entire life cycle). In stock, we also have many fabrics made from recycled plastics.

Living in Hawaii, I know how important it is to use sun protection! Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) measures the amount of UV radiation (UVB and UVA rays) that can reach your skin through fabric penetration. The Skin Cancer Foundation's recommendation is UPF 30+. A UPF from 30-49 is considered very good protection. UPF 50+ is the highest amount of protection fabric can have. Many of the fabrics we have are UPF 50+. To read more about specific fabric certifications and sustainability, see the 'Fabric Collections' pages.

We're always striving to better our environmental and ethical ways. Have any suggestions? Email!