The current zeitgeist is focused on the outdoors in a variety of ways. People are venturing out more than ever before; impact and production are being scrutinized more closely; more brands are entering the community than ever before.
It's an exciting time to be involved in the outdoor industry, particularly as a consumer; it's hard to remember a time where there's been this many capable, performance-driven brands with unique takes on what it means to get outside. Whether you're the glamping type, a hiker, a cyclist or just generally into recreation, chances are there's a brand that addresses your performance needs — and just as importantly, your outdoor aesthetic.
As we walked the showroom floor at this summer's Outdoor Retailer, we saw heritage brands like Hydro Flask, Fjällräven and Scarpa showing off their wares, but what really caught our eye were the five up-and-coming brands you'll see below. Each addresses a unique segment of the market in new and novel ways.
Here are the five outdoor gear brands you may not have heard of yet that you should keep an eye on this year.
Making boots that are wearable and lifestyle-oriented enough to be at home both on the trail and around town, Thesus Outdoors continues the trend in blurring the line between the urban and outdoor. Aside from style, the brand racks up points for its sustainable and eco-minded production and materials, which are both vegan and recycled.
The Get Out
Cheeky branding, bold colorways and utility-driven design with a little flair define The Get Out. The new (camping) kid on the block produces tents, soft coolers and a host of accessories that make the idea of getting out appealing to even the most novice of campers. By reinventing the classics with an infusion of modern materials and designs, The Get Out has us all in.
The bandana is getting a lot of attention lately — from technical releases like the Nomadix Bandana Towel, to more style-driven options like those from Bandit Bandanas. Don't let the pretty prints fool you though: BB is as mission-driven as the best of them. For each bandana produced, the brand works with an individual artist on the design; once they're up for sale, 10 percent of the sales proceeds are donated to the charity of the artist's choice.
The bandanas themselves are 100-percent organic cotton, and are GOTS certified and sustainably sourced from Chetna Organic - an organization that supports and improves the livelihood of small farmers in India.
About as small and cool as they come, Hiker Kind is both an apparel company and a hiking club with a heavy emphasis on maintaining elevated personal style outdoors. Creating outdoor gear that embodies the spirit of authenticity on and off the trail, the brand produces basics like shirts, pants and shorts that are anything but. Our favorite item from the brand so far? The Shirt_01, which is made in New York City from Bluesign certified recycled materials and is a technical take on the classic hike button-down.
Are canteens coming for the insulated water bottle? That's what Canu Canteen is betting on: the five year-old brand makes functional, unique water vessels built to respect the environment and support your next hike. The bottles are made with BPA-free, PP plastic, an eco-friendly Yulex neoprene carrying case and straps made from up-cycled climbing rope. The stretchy neoprene case can fit your phone, keys and other small items while you trek, so you can free those hands up while you're on the trail. Made in Denver, the canteens are a fresh take on trail hydration.