Outdoor Gear

Last updated: September 2016 


Get Ready For Your Winter Ramble


Winter is upon us, so it's time to check whether your fleece and waterproof have become moth-eaten or mouldy at the back of the wardrobe. 

Don't worry if they have, help is at hand.

The collection of guides below will give you all you need to know about shopping ethically for your walking gear, with company ratings and Best Buy advice. 

Walking Boots

Walking Boots are an essential item for many keen walkers.  While some of the most popular brands sit at the bottom of the scoretable (Jack Wolfskin, Adidas, Columbia), it is positive to see more ethical companies selling walking boots. 

Eco Vegan Shoes

Eco Vegan Shoes

The vegan companies selling walking boots made from synthetic materials all get a best rating. Eco Vegan Shoes, Wills, Vegetarian Shoes and Ethical Wares. They are all available to buy online but Vegetarian shoes also has a shop in Brighton. 

See our guide to Walking Boots for more information.  




With temperatures dropping, a warm fleece is necessary for a crisp autumn walk. Patagonia pioneered the idea of making fleeces out of recycled plastic bottles in 1993.

Guide to fleeces 

Now many companies are using recycled plastic in manufacturing. Therefore we recommend Paramo, Fjallraven & Patagonia’s recycled fleeces. 

See our guide to fleece jackets for more information. 




Larger rucksacks are now nearly all made of polyester or nylon with a synthetic waterproof coating. However, some of the most popular brands (Adidas, Puma, Reebok, Regatta, Trespass) continue to use PVC, which is known to be environmentally toxic. 

Image: guide to rucksacks

Our best buys are Fjallraven, Deuter and Patogonia as they all receive a best rating for supply chain management. 

See our guide to Rucksacks for more information.  




Waterproof Jackets

If you live in the UK, it's probably best to invest in a waterproof. One of the key issues is the use of animal down in jackets. Down is used to keep you warm without weighing you down. 

It is a prized commodity for the outdoor equipment industry. Every year tonnes of it are processed, from millions of ducks and geese, who are often alive when they are plucked. 

Image: guide to waterproof jackets 

Our best buy is Paramo who doesn’t use down in its jackets. It also receives a best rating for supply chain management. 80% of production takes place in a factory in Colombia, giving new opportunities to vulnerable women. Read more about Paramo's story in our Q&A

See our guide to waterproof jackets for more information. 



Outdoor gear & sportswear shops


We have also rated 13 of the biggest sports & outdoor gear retailers. Sports Direct is responsible for around half of the sports' retailing market. The sports giant is not short of controversy for poor workers’ rights and the rest of the sector don't seem to be much better. Every single retailer receives a worst rating for supply chain management. 

Image: sports shops

The best out of an unimpressive bunch seem to be Intersport and Trespass. 

See our guide to sports & outdoor retailers for more information. 


Clothing Guides

Clothing guides

Wrap up warm this Autumn

See a selection of different product guides to help you with your seasonal shopping. We have updated guides on everything from underwear to jeans. 

Read More



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