Lifestyle & Culture

The Groovy Mozzie-Free Tee That Could End Malaria: Borne Clothing

Feeling socially and environmentally conscious? It’s 2020, of course you are! Phoebe Metcalfe explores how Borne Clothing is helping us locally and globally with the mozzie problem.

We’re getting to that time of year where campus (and the country) is overrun by mozzies. What else were we expecting? UON’s Shortland and Hunter campuses are situated on wetlands, and as beautiful as they are in winter when summertime hits; it’s survival of the fittest.

However, there is a new innovative brand of clothing that is determined to help us while simultaneously contributing to the eradication of mosquito-borne diseases; Borne.

Winners of the 2019 University of Newcastle Grand Challenge, the team received $10,000 funding to start their mosquito repellent clothing company.

Team members Bal Dhital and Timothy Keys (medical students), Dan Robson (graphic designer), and Pat Prell (mechatronic engineer) have created one of the most socially, ethically, and environmentally conscious business models of 2020.

Not only are they ‘thinking globally and acting locally’, but they’re also acting globally.

“Getting bitten can ruin your day, but for some people that bite can quite literally ruin their life”

Bal gave me some insights into the issue: “Did you know that malaria kills one child every two minutes? In a world where bednets and medications are cheap and accessible, that statistic is beyond insanity.”

Half of all their profits will be going to Nothing but Nets, a company committed to providing mosquito nets and medication to those who couldn’t afford it otherwise.

Borne is also partnered with SD Strategies, a company that identifies human rights and sustainability issues within supply chains, for them to make informed decisions to have the most socially and ethically sustainable business.

For a mere $55 bucks you can get yourself a groovy shirt that uses Insect Shield technology to repel the mozzies across 97% of your bod!

“The graphics [on the shirts] themselves pull from our local environment, with earthy tones, local birds and botanical illustrations. Our latest design, for example, features a Citronella flower which is a natural mozzie-repellent.”

“Everyone gets bitten by mozzies, and we love the idea of bringing people together through this shared experience.”
That single shirt will have the same effect for about 70 washes. This shirt will also be delivered to you via Sendle; Australia’s first 100% carbon neutral delivery service.

Borne have just launched their first 250 shirts!

“There are only about 20% left,” says Bal. “We have sold out of so many sizes already, and we’ve had to create waitlists for these products. To put that in uni terms, it’s a group project that we’ve actually enjoyed doing – how crazy is that! Impossible really is nothing!”


“A mozzie-free tee will give you a mozzie-free summer AND half of the profit from it will fund bednets and medications overseas. Sounds like a pretty good deal to us!”

If ending horrible mosquito-borne diseases, like malaria dengue and zika, doesn’t razz you up then just think about not getting bit walking across from Shortland to Hunter…

“We’ve ordered a bunch more colours and designs and we’re super stoked to share them with you. You’ll be able to get a sneak peek on our social media, so head there to be the first in line for a preview!”

Keep up to date with Borne’s progress, global footprint, and products on their Facebook and Instagram or order your own mozzie repellent shirt!

Feature Image: Maddy Gardiner, Yak Media Designer

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