Effective Tips to Care for Clothes that are Sustainable
Sustainability has become a hot topic as of late, mostly as a result of the pandemic. People across the globe have become more conscious about the way they live, the foods they eat, and the clothes that they wear.
The truth is, while we are aware of global warming and how reducing carbon emissions are important, we often forget the role that our clothing plays in it all. This doesn’t make us horrible people; it simply means that there are so many different aspects to sustainable living that we have not yet considered.
Waste in the fashion industry
Each year, the fashion industry produces more clothing than the world needs. In addition to this, there’s the odd impulse buy or promotion-induced shopping spree where we end up buying more clothes than we need. All too often, these items of clothing get pushed to the back of the closet before finally being thrown out.
To put this into perspective, the average consumer throws away around 32 kilograms of clothing and textiles each year.
Environmental impact of washing clothes
While clothing waste is a big problem, an even bigger issue is the impact of using a washing machine on the environment. It has been estimated that every time you run your washing machine, you release over 700,000 microscopic plastic fibres into the water and as a result, the environment. These plastic fibres can be toxic when injected and kill the surrounding plant and animal life.
The truth is, to ensure that your clothing lasts, you need to be smarter about your laundry habits. By simply wearing your clothes more than once, you can make a difference. Not only does this prevent unnecessary wear and tear on your favourite clothing items, but it also reduces your impact on the environment. This begs the question, “What is eco-friendly washing?”.
Let’s consider the fact that most modern washing machines use 15 to 30 gallons of water to wash clothing, while older models use 29 to 45 gallons. This indicates that washing machine manufacturers are looking into ways of promoting eco-friendly washing. The next thing to consider is that the most eco-friendly washing temperature is between 86 and 104 degrees Fahrenheit – it uses around 40% less electricity than any other cycle. So, if possible, use a cycle that washes at this temperature to reduce your electric bill and help reduce your carbon footprint.
The truth is when you’re asking yourself “How often should you wash your clothes sustainable?”, the answer is as little as possible. This relates to everything we have discussed so far.
Sustainable fashion brands
When it comes to promoting sustainability, there are a few fashion brands that are getting it right.
Dockers uses soft, chemical-free organic cotton and hemp to make sure you get maximum comfort all while reducing your impact on the environment. In addition to this, their clothing is also designed to last, which means that you won’t need to buy a new pair of jeans or chinos every month or so.
When it comes to a brand that thrives on sustainability, Boden always comes to mind. Not only do they use responsibly sourced, sustainable materials for their clothing, but they also make use of eco-friendly packaging when it comes to shipping their products.
Another noteworthy, sustainable brand is Tree. They are Free Trade certified and use GOTS certified materials. In addition to this, they also use low impact dyes and actively look for ways to give back to their community.