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PFAS chemicals in outdoor clothing

I am looking for outdoor clothing that does not contains PFAS chemicals. Two questions:

1)  I recently purchased the REI Rainer Rain Jacket but the online specs do not indicate if it has PFAS chemicals or not.    Hope you can help and let me know.  

2)  I am also looking for winter jackets (both male and female) that also do not contain PFAS chemicals.  Can you please advise on what is available.

I would appreciate any advice. Warm Regards, Joe   

 

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.
4 Replies

@Joe Thanks for reaching out!

We're going to connect with our Co-op Brands team to get answers to your questions. Thank you for bearing with us while we get the correct information for you. In the meantime, feel free to check out our Sustainable Product Practices page. Near the bottom of the page there is a section on sustainable chemistry that says:

Durable Water Repellents (DWR): Concerns about the toxicity and environmental persistence of certain durable water repellents (DWR) is driving a transition in the industry. As of 2019 product lines, REI has eliminated DWR treatments that contain long-chain PFAS from our supply chain. Use of short-chain PFAS alternatives is a positive stepping stone while we explore non-fluorinated alternatives, which we believe will eventually provide the best balance of performance and environmental stewardship.

We'll get back to you as soon as we have more information regarding your questions about the REI Co-op Rainier Rain Jacket and some options for winter jackets.

Thanks!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

@Joe Thanks for your patience as we connected with our sustainability team. We heard back from them today and here's what they had to say:

While the industry is working to transition away from the use of PFAS in manufacturing water-repellent apparel, most brands still use short-chain PFAS-based chemistry due to its performance and durability. As noted previously, REI’s Co-op Brands has moved away from the use of long-chain PFAS for the DWR treatments used on our products. In addition, we’re a committed bluesign® System Partner and use bluesign®-approved materials for the majority of our apparel fabrics, including the recycled ripstop nylon shell used in the REI Co-op Rainier Rain Jacket we currently have in-store. Bluesign® is a group that works with brands and factories to certify the chemical inputs, materials, and suppliers that create certified products. The Bluesign® system focuses on consumer safety, resource use, occupational health and safety for workers, and water and air emissions. You can learn more about Bluesign® in REI’s Expert Advice article on the topic.

If you’re looking for PFAS-free rain jackets, there are a handful of options currently at REI, including the North Face FUTURELIGHT series (available here) and the Marmot PreCip Eco Jacket (available here). PFAS-free options will likely become more common in the future as brands continue to innovate and develop additional PFAS-free durable water-repellent technologies that perform as well as those that use PFAS.

Hope this helps!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

Hello, I would like to follow up on this question. I am curious if you have an answer yet. I understand that there is a class action lawsuit against you for selling products that contain the forever chemicals. I have an REI brand rain jacket that I'm concerned about. I'm not going to wear it anymore. I would like to find a rain jacket that does not contain forever chemicals. How can I find out this information? I would like to know that REI is committed to giving us quality information about the products we are using, especially in regards to the cancer causing and liver damaging forever chemicals. Thank you for your time and attention.

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@Leela 

Thanks for reaching out about your REI jacket.  If you would like to return the item, please refer to the co-op’s return policy on REI.com if you purchased the item in the last year as a member.

At REI, we strive to sell high-quality, durable gear while minimizing impacts to the environment and people. A durable water repellent (DWR) finish is sometimes necessary to achieve stain and/or water-resistance and meet the durability and performance expectations of our customers. Any time we use a chemical treatment in the creation of a product, our goal is to do so in a way that minimizes the impact to people and the planet.   

REI has a rigorous chemicals management program for the products we sell under the REI Co-op brand, to safeguard consumer health and safety. This involves chemical testing of materials that go into the products we sell for compliance with REI’s Restricted Substances List (RSL). We also partner with bluesign® to utilize certified materials with the aim of preventing chemicals of concern from entering into our products during each step of the manufacturing process. 

If you’d like to learn more about REI’s product sustainability efforts—including those related to chemical management—please visit our recently released Impact Report here

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.