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Gear

Here’s the Best Gear for the Eco-Conscious Skier

From recycled ski edges on skis to apparel made from plastic waste in the ocean, these are brands making gear that is better for the planet.

As more skiers grow concerned about climate change and sustainability, it’s no surprise that a number of gear brands are doing all they can to minimize the carbon footprint their gear creates during the manufacturing process. From recycled ski edges to apparel made from sugar cane, brands are getting creative to produce sustainable ski gear that also meets our performance demands.

Perhaps the most sustainable thing most skiers can do, however, is not buying new gear at all. Repairing and reusing ski gear next season is a surefire way to decrease your carbon footprint. And that starts with proper gear storage, as well as knowing when a ski’s damage is repairable or not. To get started on the best way to extend the life of the gear you already have, ask yourself the question of whether you should reuse, repair, or replace your gear when ski season ends.

If your skis are destroyed or your jacket is completely worn out, there are a number of brands making great gear from sustainable sources. Some apparel brands offer buy-back credit for old outerwear, and their new products are made with environmentally-friendly components and methods. For ski companies, there is a revolution slowly taking place with companies like WNDR making skis with bio-based resins in addition to a buy-back program. Learn more about these efforts and other brands using sustainable manufacturing processes.

Eco-Friendly Outerwear

FUTURELIGHT from The North Face

If you’re in need of new technical outerwear, The North Face’s FUTURELIGHT products include a waterproof/breathable membrane that is made entirely from recycled materials, and the DWR application to the products’ exteriors are PFC-free. Check out the origins of FUTURELIGHT and how it’s already changing the game.

Picture Organic Clothing

Person wearing Picture jacket and mittens
Picture Organic Clothing might be the most sustainable apparel company available in North America. Photo: Courtesy of Picture Organic Clothing

Picture Organic Clothing is considered to be one of the most sustainable outerwear brands on the market, and their fashionable jackets and pants are made with sugarcane and recycled fabrics as well. Their line for next year was at the top of its class in terms of performance as well. In other words, the brand that’s leading the sustainable outerwear movement isn’t who you think it is.

Adidas x Parley for the Oceans

If you’re looking for more general apparel or shoes for the upcoming summer, Adidas, who sponsors Mikaela Shiffrin, partnered with Parley for the Oceans. Together, the brands are making products with plastic that has been pulled out of the sea. The lineup includes a ski jacket and extends into hiking shoes, running shoes, and workout clothes.

Skis and Ski Boots that are Better for the Environment

Rossignol’s New Experience Line

If new skis or boots are on your list for next season, Rossignol is one of the major ski brands leading the way with sustainably made skis. Their new Experience line is made with 15 percent recycled material in the tops sheets, 30-70 percent recycled ski bases, and 100 percent recycled steel edges. Learn how science, sustainability, and World Cup ski racing shaped Rossignol’s new skis.

Bio-Based Backcountry Ski Boots

While SCARPA has been using Grilamid Bio and Pebax Rnu materials in their backcountry ski boots for a few years, Fischer recently jumped into the bio-sourced plastics process for their new TransAlp backcountry boots for next season. While we’ll have a full review in the 2022 Gear Guide this fall, here’s a taste: They ski uphill and downhill really, really well.

Keep an eye on our Environmental Sustainability channel this year for more great gear from brands doing all they can to stop climate change.