As humans, we have a lot in common, including the planet we live on and the desire for a comfortable and functional wardrobe. Sustainable underwear and clothing company In Common was the result of the frustration of shopping during the pandemic. Founder Allison Bloch explains she and her partner “struggled to find affordable basics that didn’t compromise on either quality, fit or ethics.”
In Common’s mission is to go beyond fast fashion, creating a line of bras, underwear, tanks, joggers, hoodies and more that are long lasting and environmentally-friendly. In fact, the company’s focus goes well beyond making clothing to giving back to the community.
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In Common was born out of a desire to build a brand that conscious consumers could feel good about. Therefore, they put the spotlight on the core principles of “better manufacturing processes, sustainable fabrics, fair-wage employment and modern and comfortable design, all at a fair price.”
Sustainable underwear fabrics
In Common’s standout product is the wire-free Zero Bra. The innovative design features natural materials like non-toxic sugarcane pads (with no harmful chemicals).
“The In Common team knows that sustainability is a spectrum and very nuanced,” said the company. “With plans to continue evolving and improving over time, the brand has built a strong foundation [in its material selections].”
One example is TENCE Modal, a plant-based fiber extracted from beechwood. The fibers are produced using low-energy requirements. Additionally, they are certified as compostable and biodegradable so they can complete the circle back into nature at the end of the product life cycle.
Products also include BCI Cotton, a brand dedicated to supporting cotton farmers and the environment through improving soil health, water management, greenhouse gas emissions and climate resilience. It also addresses inequality, farm working conditions and ensuring fair wages for a higher standard of living.
Regardless of the fabric being used, it is stitched together with EcoVerde Threads, which is made from 100% recycled premium polyester. The product is built for durability. It’s also both STANDARD 100 and OEKO-TEX Certified.
Packaging the underwear
In Common material selection also rolls into the packaging and shipping department with the use of plant-based poly bags. Each product is packaged in corn-based bags, which are 100% biodegradable. Then, they are shipped in compostable mailers to avoid the use of petroleum-based plastic.
Furthermore, the company encourages community involvement and enrichment. With this in mind, the company has hosted an assortment of “successful pop-ups and community meet-ups (beach clean-ups, etc.) in Los Angeles, Austin and NYC.”
Review of In Common Zero Bra
When the company offered to send me a product sample, I accepted delivery of the flagship Zero Bra. If you wear bras, you’ll understand my general hatred for bra shopping and regular discomfort in having them as part of my wearable wardrobe. Let’s be honest, bras are problematic on many levels. They either dig into your skin or leave you looking like you have a “uni-boob” while squished into a sports bra.
Traditionally, the idea of “lift and separate” included underwires to help the bra maintain its shape while providing support. However, anyone who’s spent any time wearing an underwire has also experienced the jab once the wire inevitably busts out of the fabric and into your skin.
Rant over and onto the review. My Zero Bra arrived quickly and packaged in plant-based, plastic-free packaging as promised.
I requested a very neutral almond color, because I’m practical like that. The bra is available in six colors and a wide range of sizes. I ordered a size on the smaller end of the sizing recommendations because, in past experiences, the material stretches over time. The goal is, therefore, to start on the largest setting and have additional hooks to move to as the bra relaxes. This bra offers four sets of hook options to grow with the lifespan of the product.
The first time I put the bra on, it felt a little snug around the ribcage, but within a few hours I was no longer uncomfortable. The material is very soft and pliable, so it moves with me rather than being rigid. The stitching is close together and appears durable. The hooks and straps are made of quality materials as well.
All in all, the Zero Bra provides great support without an underwire. I appreciate the strap around the ribcage doesn’t roll or tuck beneath the breasts, but stays in place as it’s supposed to do. Since it’s a common issue, it’s also worth mentioning the straps didn’t dig into my skin anywhere. Overall, it’s a bra that performs like you’d expect a bra to perform, without the plastic, wires, inferior construction and environmental damage we can all do without.
Images via Brad Ogbonna
Editor’s Note: This product review is not sponsored by In Common. All opinions on the products and company are the author’s own.