Upcycling vs Recyling the Oceans


Upcycling vs recycling; what’s the difference? 

Upcycling and recycling. Two of the biggest buzz words in sustainable fashion. But what’s the difference?

Take a deep dive into the manufacturing revolution changing the way we turn waste into incredible new stuff. 

Reduce, reuse, recycle, repeat!

Simply put, recycling breaks waste down to be made into new things. Upcycling repurposes old materials while maintaining some of their original characteristics. 

Upcycling is also sometimes known as ‘creative reuse’. It’s the process of transforming by-products, waste materials or unwanted products into new materials or products of greater quality. This sometimes means artistic or environmental value.

Recycled vs. upcycled fashion? 

Textile recycling is the process of collecting fibers, plastic or fabric (often recovered from the ocean) and reprocessing the textile material into useful products. Due to the trend of over consumption and waste generation in global fashion culture, textile recycling has become a key focus of worldwide sustainability efforts for environmentally conscious brands. 

Upcycled textiles takes the clothes that would otherwise be thrown away by consumers and reinvents them. The whole principle behind upcycling clothing is to take used garments and create new looks.

Ecoalf Upcycling the Oceans

We love this brand, truly inspiring

Ecoalf was started in 2009 by Javier Goyeneche with a view of paving the way for a new generation of fabrics – recycled fabrics.

He wanted to create a truly sustainable fashion brand and believed the most sustainable thing to do was to stop using natural resources in a careless way. Recycling could be a solution if they were able to make a new generation of recycled products with the same quality and design as the best non recycled.

Over the past decade, Ecoalf has started many projects to clean up the Oceans from plastic. 

The sheer volume of plastic polluting the oceans is breathtaking, so it’s wonderful to see a fashion brand tackling this head on. Ecoalf actively collects junk from the ocean and recycles it, turning them into timeless designs for us to wear. 

“By 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish”

upcycling clothes

Tay-Bay Sustainable Swimwear

Turning waste problems into fashion solutions.

Tay-Bay bikinis are completely sustainable and produced from recycled fishing nets.

It is estimated that 640,000 tons of fishing nets are abandoned at the bottom of the ocean each year. FAO and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) estimate that one tenth of all waste in the oceans is made up of this “ghost gear”. ‘Ghost fishing’ occurs when lost or abandoned fishing gear stays in the ocean and traps fish or other marine life, indiscriminately killing whatever it catches.

Abandoned, lost or otherwise discarded fishing gear (ALDFG), as it is known officially, is being recognized as a topic that must be tackled now for the sake of our marine environment and the people whose lives and livelihoods depend on it. 

So, Tay-Bay bikinis turn these waste problems into solutions through a gratifying project, by creating up-cycled ethical swimwear. A small part to play in a much bigger picture – but each small act makes a difference. 

Our swimwear also comes packaged in biodegradable eco-friendly bags – perfect for the plastic-free time we live in. Eco-friendly options are wonderful for the island of Mauritius as the bags are completely compostable, saving the landfills from tons of plastic.

Shop our gorgeous, sustainable bikinis from the heart of Mauritius here or follow along on our journey on Instagram @taybayswim