“Clothes aren’t going to change the world. The women who wear them will” -Anne Klein

“Clothes aren’t going to change the world. The women who wear them will” -Anne Klein

People will always be at the heart of Gemma Lee. 


Whether it’s the community that wears our dreamy wetsuits, or it's the hands that craft our special pieces together. 

So how did we ensure that from day 1 that our wetsuits and swimwear were ethically made and our crafters were well cared for?

Let’s just say it was a journey! And an overwhelming one for a baby 22 year old Gemma at the time. The world was a big place and who knew where to start! 


Pink wetsuit nz

We would eventually land somewhere close to home; wetsuits in Australia & swimwear in New Zealand, knowing that we could have utter confidence in the ethics of the factories, as we could often pop in and work closely with the team. This worked well for a couple of years, but it was only so long before we grew out of the capacity to be made locally. 


This began the challenging hunt of finding a factory that fitted our needs as a growing brand, but didn’t compromise any of our values. 


We remember at the time there were people who knew our struggles of finding a suitable factory that was ethical, and would turn to us and suggest just to find anywhere for now, and worry about the ethics later. 


But taking care of every person that came in contact with our surfwear brand was not something we were willing to budge on before, and we weren't ever going to change my mind on that topic, just because it would be ‘easier’ for us.


wetsuits and swimwear nz

It eventually led us to working closely with our favourite ethical certification organisation, WRAP (Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production)This standard is an ethical social compliance certification that ensures production facilities operate in a safe and socially responsible manner, while making a conscious effort to minimise environmental impact.  Each WRAP certified factory has undertaken thorough inspection by a WRAP auditor, and unannounced follow up inspections to ensure compliance is being upheld at all time.


WRAP kindly looked into their own database for Gemma Lee and emailed out our specifications of what we were looking for. Eventually the WRAP factory that was the perfect fit for Gemma Lee reached out to us, and we’ve worked together ever since. 


We are so grateful for the team that crafts our beautiful wetsuits & swimwear! They are beyond talented and have the most incredible eye for detail. It is because of them that Gemma Lee suits exist. 

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