Sustainable and toxin-free living

Sustainable and toxin-free living

My Sustainable Burning Man Outfits

One of the Burning Man principles is radical self expression. That means something different to everyone. To some people, it means going naked. To others, it means neon rave gear. To me, it meant a variety of outfits crafted from sustainable fashion elements.

Desert style Burning Man

We reached the Playa Sunday evening, but only made it in the Will Call parking lot before the torrential rain and hail unleashed. So when I cautiously peered out of our RV on what was supposed to be Day 1, I beheld a vast sea of mud. We were forced to hang out all day while the Playa dried out. To deal with the mud, I pulled on my old rain boots. To deal with the heat, I put on my ethically made We Are Handsome one-piece bathing suit. The festival pouch from Kaight, a water bottle sling from Etsy seller Spools in Love, and a leather hip bag from Happy Cow would all prove immensely useful in the week ahead. An American Apparel wool hat kept the sun off my face.

Vintage dress Burning Man

I put a feather shawl from the Garment District over this vintage dress from Mode Marteau, and paired it with cowboy boots I bought back in high school in Arizona.

Bali outfit Burning Man

Here I’m wearing a sarong I bought in Bali, and a headdress I made myself (instructions here). The parasol is from Leekan Designs on the Lower East Side. That place is a treasure trove of imported treasures. You must go.

Alden Wicker at Burning Man

Why suddenly the switch to fur? This is my outfit at dawn, after a night dancing on the Playa. The fur coat is from Stella Dallas in Williamsburg, the pants are Nike running pants, and the  boots are old Mukluks, which are made by an aboriginal-owned company in Canada.


  • Alden Wicker

    Alden Wicker is an award-winning investigative journalist and author of To Dye For: How Toxic Fashion Is Making Us Sick — and How We Can Fight Back (Putnam). She splits her time between managing her internationally recognized platform on safe and sustainable fashion,, and contributing to publications such as The New York Times, Vox, Wired, Vogue, and more. She’s made expert appearances on NPR’s Fresh Air, the BBC, and Al Jazeera to speak on consumer sustainability and the fashion system’s effect on people and the planet.

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Silk Boyfriend Shirt by Carrie Parry // made in NYC Garment District