Connect with us


These 10 African Clothing Brands Are Championing Sustainable Practices In The Fashion Industry

Avatar photo



Sustainable fashion in Africa is constantly evolving as consumers and manufacturers are more aware of the effects of textile production on climate change and the environment. Hence are taking steps to reduce the negative impact of their activities on the environment.

A rising number of ethical and sustainable fashion brands are establishing themselves and fostering change throughout the fashion industry, including in Africa. These innovative brands are reclaiming African fashion, creating a brave and beautiful future for emerging African fashion designers with their contemporary views steeped in history.

Compared to their western counterparts, Africa’s sustainable and ethical fashion industry still has a long way to go. However, some African brands are breaking down barriers and making a name for themselves.

Throughout our BellaNaija Style Declutter & Donate campaign, we will raise awareness for sustainable fashion in Africa. Keep up with our activities on Instagram #BNSDeclutterDonate and on to keep up with all our activities.


Lisa Folawiyo Studio

Nigerian eponymous womenswear brand Lisa Folawiyo Studio is considered one of the first African fashion brands to use the Ankara fabric with modern tailoring techniques and sequin trim.

Lisa’s designs are made from locally sourced textiles and have beautiful tailoring and intricate beadwork done by decently compensated female Nigerian craftsmen. She has also started working together on a project with the Ethical Fashion Initiative.


WUMAN is a contemporary African fashion-art brand founded in 2013 by Ekwerike Chukwuma. The womenswear/menswear brand draws inspiration from the female form, which Chukwuma fell in love with during his early university days. The garments by WUMAN unify culture, heritage and African art with cross-disciplinary affinities to anatomy, poetry, architecture etc.

At WUMAN, garments are seen as storytellers and created within moments of grace unique to Chukwuma and the times. The garments are art made to speak to and engage their wearer and audience and become a tool of change.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by WUMAN (@thewumanbrand)


The Nigerian fashion brand headed by Nkwo Onwuka strives to reduce waste, which has led to the invention of a “new African fabric” called DAKALA CLOTH. NKWO is a pioneer in Nigeria’s sustainable fashion movement that emphasizes resource conservation.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by NKWO (@nkwo_official)


Designed and manufactured by artisans in Dakar, Senegal, the ALLËDJO clothing line was founded by Beninese designer Kassim Lassissi in 2017. The brand was created by merging the designer’s love of travel and exquisite clothing with heavy reliance on a colourful palette and free-flowing materials. The brand reflects the man and woman on the move, committed to sustainability and the preservation of cultures.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Allëdjo (@alledjostudio)


Sustainable Ivorian menswear brand OLOOH, led by Kadar Diaby, pays homage to Ivorian artisans by employing female workers in the commune of Treichville to dye the eco-linen used for the brand’s pieces. The leather sandals and wide-brimmed wicker hats are also from Abidjan. Olooh in Senufo, a language influenced by the Ivory Coast, Morocco, and the creator’s exposure to the West, means “Our” in the language.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by OLOOH (@oloohconcept)

Sophie Nzinga

Using biodegradable materials and fabrics (such as silk, satin, and semi-precious stones.), sustainable fashion label Sophie Nzinga crafts exquisite designs that blend several cultures, particularly Sophie’s Senegalese heritage and New York City education.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Sophie Zinga Official (@sophiezinga)


Osei-Duro was established in 2011 by Maryanne Mathias and Molly Keogh. Their pieces are hand-dyed, utilizing vintage methods such as West African batik, wood carving, botanical dyeing, block printing, hand painting, and more.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Osei-Duro (@oseiduro)


This South African ethical knitwear brand was founded in 2010 by Laduma Ngxokolo. Laduma has explored and reinterpreted traditional Xhosa beadwork, patterns, symbolism, and colours to inspire his modern knitwear line by incorporating the Xhosa aesthetic. Keeping his heritage intact while protecting the environment.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by MAXHOSA AFRICA™ (@maxhosa)


Co-founded by Rosario Dawson and Abrima Erwiah, this Accra-based fashion and lifestyle brand is made in Africa and produces African and African-inspired content and clothing. It has won recently won the prestigious CFDA Lexus Fashion Initiative for Sustainability. The label works with artisanal communities that specialize primarily in plant-based dye, hand-batik and kente weaving for production.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Studio 189 (@studiooneeightynine)

Lukhanyo Mdingi

Since its inception in 2015, the eponymous label has held a profound interest in considered and sincere design. The spirit of collaboration yields the LUKHANYO MDINGI label in creating meticulously made pieces. The intention is to ensure a pragmatic and mindful approach to product development, looking into human ingenuity as the provenance in creating a design that is honest, steady and strong.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Lukhanyo Mdingi (@lukhanyomdingi)

This is by no means an exhaustive list. In Africa, there are more ethical and sustainable fashion and accessory brands. Please feel free to add brands you know in the comments section below.



Star Features