Our waxed cotton is a durable, water-repellent material with a plant-based wax finish.
Waterproof gear is essential for keeping us dry, warm and protected from the elements. But as the apparel industry’s reliance on synthetic fabrics and finishes grows, so does its impact on our planet. Materials like virgin polyester depend on petroleum as a source for raw material, while the perfluorinated chemicals in durable water repellent (DWR) finishes such as PFCs and PFAS persist in our environment and never degrade.
As we shift to water-repellent membranes and finishes made without PFAS or PFCs, and prioritize recycled materials to build quality, durable synthetic gear, we’re also focusing on incorporating natural fiber alternatives with a lower environmental impact. Our next step in that journey is waxed cotton.
Waxed cotton is renowned for its durability, longevity and history. Dating back to 15th century sailors who first treated their sailcloth and slickers with fish oils for weather protection, it’s considered the original performance fabric.
We spent a decade perfecting a modern version of this centuries-old concept, working with a Scotland-based supplier that has more than 150 years of expertise. Instead of conventional, petroleum-based paraffin wax, we built a Cotton in Conversion fabric finished with EverWax Olive™, a 100 percent plant-based wax made from a mix of olive oil, sunflower oil and castor bean oil, all repurposed from food-industry waste.
The wax creates a soft matte finish, and over time, the material inherits marks and creases, building character and stories with each wear. It also helps your garment adjust to the environment, feeling softer and more breathable in warm weather, and sturdier and more windproof in the cold.
We built our waxed cotton to last for years, even generations. Because wax naturally and gradually comes off, part of that longevity is rooted in re-waxing your jacket or tote to keep it soft, supple and weather-resistant. To learn when and how to re-proof, check out our care tips.
In Fall 2024, we’re adding a lightweight waxed cotton jacket to our collection and hope to add more natural alternatives to synthetic performance gear.