Why I Love it: Cotopaxi

The socially-conscious and colorful outdoor brand makes rugged and stylish gear I rock from city streets to mountain trails. And it's high time the rest of the Internet knew about them.

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The first thing I got from Cotopaxi was in 2015. It was a blue puffer jacket, insulated with llama fur, that could pack into itself and form a 7"x7" cube that was perfect to take in my carry on. Not only was the jacket warm and water-resistant, it was stylish and the fit was impeccable. Today, the jacket is a bit more beat up than when I first started wearing it, but hey, that's what six years and over 20+ trips will do to a puffer. Cotopaxi doesn't offer the jacket anymore (the closest I can find is their Laguna Jacket), but that hasn't stopped me from amassing a solid collection of their gear. Cotopaxi is one of my favorite brands, and I'm going to tell you why you should love them too.

Why I Love The Brand

They sent me a free hat one time. That's probably the biggest reason. Honestly though, I love this brand because they make top quality gear and clothing I can travel with, beat up, and brush off only to do it all over again the next weekend. My puffer jacket looks like it was run over by a snowmobile following a Zamboni, but it's only gotten more comfortable with age. And my Luzon 24L daypack comes with me on almost every trip I go on. It's small enough to pack into my luggage and unfurls into a day pack large enough to take with me as I check out new cities or day hike mountain trails—I also still sport a snowboarding jacket that I've had since 2015, if you needed any more proof of my obsession. At this point, I could probably take advantage of their Gear Trade-In option, but I love my beat up equipment. It's honest. It tells a story riddled with adventure.

Another reason I love this brand is because they don't want you to keep buying their apparel and gear season after season—never call 'em fast fashion. To put their money where their mouth is, they'll repair, replace, or reward you if you have an issue, like if a pack of racoons (aka a gaze) rips up your hammock or you accidentally get too close to the campfire because you’re distracted by your friend trying to set up a tent at 11pm in total darkness and he keeps missing the grommets. 

The bottom line is that Cotopaxi crafts functional, stylish, ethically-made wares that'll keep you cozy, organized, and comfortable wherever you wander. They also donate and give back like you wouldn't believe. Let's chat about that.


Why You'll Love The Brand

A lot of brands like to throw around buzzwords surrounding sustainability and ethics. Cotopaxi isn't exempt. However, unlike many brands that will simply tell you they're sustainable, Cotopaxi will show you—you can check out (and even download) their impact reports here. In 2020 alone, the company "provided over 661,000 people with malaria treatments, donated $447,000 to over 36 major and community grants, and aided 822,000 people directly (3.2 million indirectly) through poverty alleviation programs." Cotopaxi is also B Corp Certified (meaning their workers, suppliers, community, and practices are all assessed and deemed to be serving both an environmental and economic good), and Climate Neutral Certified with a focus on eliminating single-use plastics by 2022.

And you don't have to be an avid hiker or outdoor enthusiast to appreciate Cotopaxi. Their clothes are as comfortable in the city as they are atop a 12,000-foot peak (or atop a small hill if 12,000-feet seems a little much). Need a new blanket for the park that won't carry dirt and grass on it when you pack it up? They've got that. Cotopaxi's also teamed up with brands like Teva, ENO Hammocks, and MIIR to make, well, sandals, hammocks, and camp cups.

Take a look around the site. I guarantee you'll find something you like, and they'll guarantee you'll be feeling great—both with your comfort and your conscience.

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