Green or sustainable fashion is something that you may have heard a bit about recently, but either not paid too much attention to, or wondered what on earth it meant. Lets demystify it so you can shop a little more eco-friendly going forward.
Before we unpack green fashion, consider the fact that the average person in the USA generates 10 pounds of textile waste annually. That’s a total of 4 million tons of textile wise in the USA alone, in one year and globally; over 5% of waste in landfills is clothing. Now do you see why we need to look at other alternatives, and why throwaway fashion is fast becoming a problem that could one day equal that of single use plastics.
So, what is the solution? Green fashion. And this means shopping eco-friendly fabrics, buying gently used second hand clothes, vintage or repurposed items and ensuring that you don’t support stores that sell of cheap, synthetic garments on a regular basis.
Go Green In Style
If you want to go green and still stay fashionable then the following tips will help you do just that:
- Tencel fabric is made from organically harvested wood pulp and offers a great alternative to cotton that comes from fields sprayed with pesticides.
- Bamboo fabrics are also an excellent alterative to cotton and bamboo is the world’s fastest growing plant. It can also be sustainably grown and harvested, is naturally pest free when grown in crops and is insect resistant too. Plus, it absorbs 400% per cent more greenhouses gases and can produce more than 30% oxygen than mot trees.
- Organic cotton is as durable and as soft as conventional cotton, but it requires far less pesticides and water. The pesticides used in growing non-organic cotton don’t only pollute the air and the earth; they also release cancer-causing chemicals such as cyanide ad trifluralin. Thus, buying organic cotton is not only saving the environment, it is also saving yourself too!
- Vintage garments are as big a hit with fashionistas and are generally made from stronger, more durable fabrics as they were manufactured before synthetic fabrics became fashionable, or in some cases even invented! This means they will last longer and also retain their shape and style far longer than many of today’s fabrics would.
- Hemp is the fabric of the future, or so many people believe. It needs no herbicides, is pest resistant and grows incredibly quickly, without requiring a huge mount of water. If America replaced it 1.4 billion T-shirts sold every year with hemp T-shirts it would save 3.5 billion gigajoules in energy and a whopping 1.3 trillion gallons of water.
Last but not least, there is no point in greening your wardrobe if you are not bringing your own bag! There is already a plastic mass of bags that is twice the size of Texas floating in ocean, so when you hit the mall make sure you say no to plastic carrier bags and yes to sustainable eco-friendly alternatively- made of bamboo!