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A New Wave of Performance

By Annie McBride

As surfers, we know better. We know petroleum doesn’t belong in the ocean. But still, it’s everywhere: in our wetsuits, bathing suits, boards, leashes, even wax. That’s why we’re psyched to partner with our friends at Cheer to find a better way. Together, we’re launching a limited run of high-performance, neoprene-free wetsuit tops — the latest addition to our FUTURESHOP lineup.

Stand out in a sea of black in the Cheer x Outerknown L/S Wetsuit Top, available in Olive and Navy. A little color and positivity in the lineup go a long way!

“I see these wetsuits existing to help drive change and to partner with other organisations to achieve this on a greater scale. When John and Kelly started Outerknown, they made their stance clear from day one; that they are not interested in contributing to the problems that already exist in fashion and will only produce high-quality items with the least amount of disruption as possible, and to use their business as a vehicle for change, which is why I’m stoked to partner with them.”
– Troy, Cheer Founder

THIS IS NOT NEOPRENE
Neoprene is toxic stuff! That’s why Cheer suits are neoprene-free, made with natural, renewable Hevea™️ rubber and recycled fabrics. The rubber is sourced from sustainably grown trees in Guatemala that are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council®. The milky latex sap is tapped and gathered without harming the tree. Watch the video to see how it’s done!

How’s a wetsuit made? A wetsuit sheet is made up of three parts bonded together: the bottom (skin-facing) lining, the middle foam, and the top (outside) lining. When it comes to our wetsuits, the bottom is recycled polyester, the middle is Hevea™️ rubber, and the outside is recycled polyester/spandex. Then it’s off to a Fair Trade Certified™ factory where it’s crafted into the final product.

By switching to responsible materials and processes, Cheer cut their emissions per suit by 72% (that’s 2.68 kg less CO2 per wetsuit)!

MANEUVERABILITY X SUSTAINABILITY
Usually, it’s one or the other, but our buddies at Cheer found the perfect balance of both. Unlike some other alternatives, Hevea™ rubber doesn’t compromise comfort or mobility for sustainability. We’ve tested these vests ourselves and we love ‘em; they’re light, warm, and extremely flexible. A good amount of stretch paired with reinforced seam junctions means these vests will maintain their shape and won’t blow out.

“I’ve tried some of the other sustainable options on the market, but they felt too heavy, too constricting, and did not fit right. Troy sent Kelly and me some suits, and the Hevea natural rubber and recycled linings felt good right away. Best part is that it kept me warm but felt just as flexible as any other suit I've owned."
– John Moore, Outerknown Creative Director

CHEER RECYCLES
Approximately 7 million wetsuits are produced every year, and a lot of them end up in landfill. And so began Cheer’s wetsuit recycling program. They have drop stations all around Australia to collect your old suits, which they’ll either repair and donate to surf empowerment orgs or recycle into fresh fundraising products like yoga mats. Visit their site to get in touch.

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