Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders

Top 10 Sustainable Apparel Thought Leaders

By Jesse Mayhew

Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders


This week, Repair the World® is proud to present profiles of ten individuals who are bringing disruptive change to the textile industry. Each of these leaders in sustainability has worked in unique ways to increase public awareness and demand for ethically manufactured, eco-friendly clothing. To remain informed of their latest activities and innovations, be sure to follow all of these individuals on twitter and help promote their initiatives!

1. Yvon Chouinard
Yvon Chouinard - Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders

Photo from Men’s Journal

Founder of Patagonia, Yvon Chouinard has been involved in sustainable fashion practices for decades. Not only does Yvon prioritize sustainability when it comes to his product line, he also focuses on corporate social responsibility and other important principles in his business beliefs. Follow Yvon on twitter @patagonia.
2. Mark Heiman
Mark Heiman - Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders

Photo from Repair the World® Apparel

Co-Founder of Repair the World® Apparel, Mark Heiman is a patent-holder and textile innovator in the field of high-performance sustainable apparel products. With over thirty years of executive experience in the textile industry, Mark has held senior roles in operations, manufacturing, and product development. Before founding a business to help repair the world, Mark lived and worked in numerous countries and communities around the globe. You can follow Mark simply by following us here at Repair the World® on twitter @rtwnow.
3. Kim Poldner
Kim Poldner - Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders

Photo from

Kim Poldner’s passion for eco fashion has led her to co-found the first eco fashion store in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, pursue work with ModaFusion towards Ethical Fashion Show in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, contribute regularly to ecofashionworld, and pursue her PhD research on ethical fashion at St. Gallen University in Switzerland. You can follow Kim and her many eco fashion projects around the world @ecofashionkim.
4. Jill Fehrenbacher
Jill Fehrenbacher - Top 10 Thought Leaders

Photo from @jillfehr Twitter

Founder of the sustainable design website, Jill Fehrenbacher also launched Ecouterre in 2009, a website devoted to the future of sustainable fashion design. Ecouterre showcases designers who create beautiful garments while also considering their work’s social and environmental impact. The site aims to "follow the evolution of the apparel industry toward a more environmentally sound future, as well as facilitate a conversation about why sustainable fashion matters." Become inspired and informed by following Kim and her work @jillfehr.
5. Starre Vartan
Starre Vartan - Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders

Photo from @Ecochickie Twitter

Starre Vartan is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Eco-Chick, the first site covering green fashion and beauty for women. Starre is also the author of "The Eco-Chick Guide to Life." Starre is a seasoned blogger and green living expert who has been in featured in publications such as The New York Times, Elle, Glamour, and Whole Living. She is currently Editor-at-Large for Coco Eco Magazine. You can follow this eco fashion expert @Ecochickie.
6. Summer Rayne Oakes
Summer Rayne Oakes - Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders

Photo from @sroakes Twitter

Model, sustainability activist, television host, industry leader and ecofashion activist – Summer Rayne Oakes is often referred to as "The Eco-Model," and for good reason. Oakes founded her company Source4Style in 2010. Source4Style is a B2B online marketplace connecting designers to sustainable suppliers around the globe. Oakes was named a 2011 Gamechanger by NY Enterprise Report. Other honors Oakes has received include being one of Vanity Fair’s
"Global Citizens," one of AMICA’s "Top 20 Trendsetters Under 40," Shape magazine’s "Women Who Inspire Us," and Glamour’s "70 Women of Green." You can follow her @sroakes.
7. Shana Yansen
Shana Yansen - Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders

Photo from @jutejackfruit Twitter

Shana Yansen is as passionate about fashion as she is about the environment. Shana writes about both of these topics as the Editor of, which was started as an initiative to raise awareness of the importance of sustainable fashion. Shana also launched Jute and Jackfruit, an organic, sustainable and fair trade online clothing boutique that features sustainable fabrics, and works with women’s coops worldwide. You can follow her @jutejackfruit.
8. Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff
Rachel Sarnoff - Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders

Photo from @rachellsarnoff Twitter

Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff founded Eco Stilleto, a website featuring fashion, beauty and lifestyle ideas, and products that are sustainably focused. She also blogs as Mommy Greenest and has appeared on the Today show, Access Hollywood, CNN, and more. She can be followed @rachellsarnoff.
9. Elizabeth Cline
Elizabeth Cline - Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders

Photo by Matt Roth

New York-based journalist Elizabeth Cline has written for publications such as The Daily Beast, New York Magazine, Popular Science, The New Republic, Village Voice, and Cline recently wrote her first book “Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion.” Her blog, The Good Closet, is dedicated to alternatives to the low-priced, mass-fashion industry. You can follow her @thegoodcloset.
10. YOU!
YOU! - Top 10 Sustainable Thought Leaders

Photo from Repair the World® Apparel

By purchasing sustainable apparel and supporting innovative brands working to help people and the planet, you are a key player in the sustainable apparel movement!

Who have we left out? If you know somebody who is doing amazing things to promote slow fashion and sustainable apparel, please share their information below:

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