From Legacy to Lingerie: Cambaj’s Commitment to Ethical Intimates

6 mins

Whether you’re on the hunt for pretty essentials or something a little more playful, Cambaj Lingerie offers sustainable options that allow you to curate an eco-conscious, stylish underwear drawer

As we become more conscious of our clothing choices, sustainability should be a factor from head to toe, including those pieces that are closest to our skin: our lingerie collection.

While the nature of lingerie lends itself to being more sustainable – it can feature timeless designs in more expensive materials – the industry is by no means exempt from issues that plague the fashion world as a whole. Fast fashion practices from mainstream underwear brands still drive mass overconsumption and waste while the reliance on cheap synthetic materials such as polyester and nylon contributes to pollution. The textile industry accounts for around 10 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions, with the lingerie sector contributing to that total.

But the future looks promising as the global lingerie market inches towards sustainability. With a projected value of US$ 141.8 billion by 2030, the industry is witnessing an uplift in the number of brands embracing eco-friendly materials, ethical manufacturing and body-positive designs.

Cambaj Lingerie

One such trailblazer is Dubai-based Cambaj Lingerie, founded by Magali Mercier in 2022 with a vision to create luxury undergarments with a conscious twist.

Combining desirability and responsibility, Cambaj’s locally-crafted collection features bralettes, briefs and strings, bodysuits, and catsuits made from sustainable materials such as Tencel lace – derived from FSC-certified wood pulp – and Italian GRS certified recycled mesh. Each piece is also lined with 100 per cent organic cotton for comfort. Breathing new life into dead stock factory waste as well as recycled polyamides, Cambaj recreates stunning, eco-conscious lingerie such as the L’Intemporelle Catsuit featured above.

Magali tells The Ethicalist that lingerie was an obvious choice for her as not only is it feminine but by its very nature can be the most sustainable part of your wardrobe: ‘I always wanted to steer my career towards lingerie, because it doesn’t have the cyclical pattern of any other apparel or accessory,’ she says. ‘It isn’t influenced by seasonality or trends; rather it depends on the fabric, mood, and a deep understanding of people.’

Lady lying on the sand with a red bodysuit
The L’Alcove Bodysuit is made from recycled flocked paisley mesh and retails at AED 515

Founded as a testament to womanhood and legacy during pregnancy, the roots of Cambaj Lingerie are found in five generations of inspirational women in Magali’s life, from her own grandmother down to her daughter and future generations.

‘While “Cambaj” doesn’t translate to “legacy” in any language,’ she explains, ‘it represents my personal connection to legacy as the initials of all the women in my family, spanning five generations. The blend of letters symbolise inheritance, womanhood, and enduring bonds’

‘While sustainable choices are available for period panties and sports underwear, there is a noticeable lack of delicate designs that cater to women looking for a little more allure’

Magali Mercier, Founder Cambaj Lingerie

Driven by a connection to femininity, Magali recognised a void in the sustainable lingerie market for sensual designs.

‘It was clear that there was a need for more feminine options that don’t compromise on ethical production,’ she shares. ‘While sustainable choices are available for period panties and sports underwear, there is a noticeable lack of delicate designs that cater to women looking for a little more allure.’

ladies modelling black panties
(L) L’Alcove brief AED 295 and (R) L’Alcove string AED 255

Cambaj was created to bridge this gap, offering elegant and eco-conscious lingerie to help women feel more confident, beautiful and responsible in their choices. The L’Alcove collection pictured in the recycled mesh bottoms and bodysuit above, and the La Resille bodysuit in Tencel mesh below, created with minimalism and sensuality in mind, are perfect examples of this.


Staying true to its sustainable ethos, Cambaj carefully considers every component of its designs, including details such as the metallic fastenings. In the beginning, Magali faced challenges sourcing recycled closures in small quantities with suppliers often requiring a minimum order of 2,000 pieces.

‘For a sustainable brand, producing 2,000 pieces goes against our core values,’ Magali explains. ‘The industry is gradually evolving, and we have managed to find suppliers providing recycled closures in smaller quantities that are environmentally friendly and ethically sourced.’

lady in the desert wearing a white lace bodysuit
 The La Resille Bodysuit is one of Cambaj’s most iconic designs. Seen here in Breezy Moonrise. AED 580

Certain elements like wires and push-up features are still currently absent from their collection because the available sustainable options don’t meet their criteria because of production processes or minimum quantity constraints.

Not Dying for Dyes

When it comes to selecting lingerie, many women overlook the dyes used in their underwear. When non-certified dyes are used there is no guarantee that the textiles are free from toxic chemicals such as formaldehyde or lead, which have been linked to various health issues including skin irritation, allergic reactions, respiratory problems and even cancer upon direct contact or prolonged exposure.

‘As a woman, it seems outrageous to me that there are brands where the dyes are not OEKO-TEX certified. Underwear, the garments closest to our skin, should never pose a risk to our health’

Magali Mercier, Founder Cambaj Lingerie

Opting for lingerie made with certified dyes, such as those with OEKO-TEX certification, ensures they are free from hazardous chemicals making them a safer choice. This commitment to the health of women, as well as the environment, is why Cambaj uses only certified dyes in their designs.

La Resille bralette and briefs in Radiant Sunrise. AED456.93 and AED260

 ‘As a woman, it seems outrageous that there are brands where the dyes are not OEKO-TEX certified’ says Magali. ‘Underwear, the garments closest to our skin, should never pose a risk to our health. By choosing natural, non-toxic dyes, we prioritise the health and safety of our customers while also reducing the environmental impact of synthetic dyes.’

Try Before You Buy

Currently Cambaj is on offer in The Edit retail outlet in Dubai and will soon to be available to buy at the Wild Fabrik store in Festival City. Customers can also purchase their lingerie collection online. Understanding the challenges faced with online purchases, they decided to introduce a unique ‘Try Before you Buy’ service in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. By offering personalised no-obligation shopping appointments, customers can book a time and have someone from the Cambaj team come to their doorstep, allowing them to try on lingerie in the comfort of their own homes.

woman wearing black lace lingerie
La Resille bralette and briefs in Abysmal Dream. AED456.93 and AED260

‘We cater to women of all sizes, from 34 to 44, but we recognize that each body is unique,’ explains Magali. ‘This service means customers can try on lingerie in a comfortable environment while it also offers us valuable feedback. As a young brand, we’re continuously learning about our customers preferences, so this lets us to see how our lingerie fits, helping us with future designs’

Cambaj Lingerie’s commitment to sustainability and style ensures that you can make sartorial choices that align with your values, offering eco-friendly lingerie options that allow you to feel confident, elegant, and ethically conscious from the inside out.

Founder of Cambaj Magali Mercier
Founder of Cambaj Lingerie Magali Mercier

To book a Try Before you Buy service visit the Cambaj website here

For more articles related to sustainable fashion, visit our STYLE section

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