Jeans Made From Shrimp Shells? That’s What’s in Madewell’s New Denim Collection

madewell sustainable jeans shrimp shells
Blue Jeans and Shrimp Getty Images

Madewell is taking the push for sustainability to the next level! The clothing brand, which is known for cute and casual ensembles, announced on Tuesday, August 28, that their denim will be more eco-friendly.

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Instead of using harmful chemicals to dye the cotton used to make jeans, Madewell has chosen to utilize a sugar from shrimp shells called chitosan, which allows for a toxic-free way to get that classic blue hue in the fabric. In other words, the clothing company will be using shrimp shells to color its jeans.

According to Madewell, that’s just the start of the brand’s “earth-friendly upgrades.” The clothing retailer also says the eco-friendly collection, which is currently on sale, will use organic cotton denim from the Candiani mill in Italy — where they recycle 100 percent of their production waste. Furthermore, before it’s dyed with help from crustaceans, which in and of itself saves water, the cotton used comes from GMO-free seeds and isn’t treated with toxic chemicals.

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Though the idea of wearing shrimp pants might not be appealing to all consumers, there’s no doubt Madewell is serious about the commitment to sustainability. Since the production of this eco collection prioritizes renewable energy, any waste produced is turned into bricks, which are then used to build affordable housing.

madewell sustainable jeans shrimp shells
Shrimp Getty Images

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Lastly, thanks to the shrimp, the denim in Madewell’s eco collection requires 65 percent less chemicals and 75 percent less water than conventional fabric. Additionally, the new initiative is a part of Madwell’s recently rolled out extended sizing, meaning the line ranges from size 23-37.

Tell Us: Would you wear jeans dyed with shrimp shells?

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