Fashion is an inextricable part of daily life and a way for many people to express themselves. However, due to the fashion sector’s environmental impact, many people are reassessing their consumer habits, especially when it comes to acquiring new threads and throwing away old ones.
According to research, the fashion industry is responsible for at least ten percent of the world’s carbon emissions. These are the very same emissions known to exacerbate global warming and climate change. Certain manufacturing processes also consume high quantities of water resources while polluting rivers, streams, and oceans. Studies have shown that ninety-three billion cubic meters of water is used each year by the fashion industry. To put it into perspective, that same amount of water could be used by five million people. Additionally, the ever-changing nature of fashion trends has caused eighty-five percent of textiles to be thrown away in dumpsites each year.
Given these repercussions, many brands are striving to implement more sustainable practices in their production processes. This includes using recycled and ethically sourced materials for their products. Consumers also have the power to create a cleaner and greener future for the fashion industry. Working towards this future can be as simple as creating a more sustainable wardrobe. This involves adjusting spending practices, taking care of existing garments, and using preloved clothing items. These methods have been found to be very effective in preventing wastage and lessening resource consumption.
If you want to go green by building a more eco-friendly wardrobe, below are six tips to help you get started:
Prioritize High-Quality Items
In order to sell more products for lower prices, certain clothing manufacturers often cut down their production costs. Unfortunately, this usually results in garments that are flimsy and fragile. So while purchasing these products might seem like a good deal, they’re likely to get damaged faster. Hence, you may end up throwing them away after just a few uses, buying new ones to replace them, then repeating the whole tedious process. This not only creates a lot of waste, but also causes you to spend more money in the long run.
Keeping this in mind, try to prioritize quality over quantity when buying new threads. Be sure to examine the build-quality and durability of any apparel before purchasing. High-quality clothes are likely to last longer, which means you won’t need to replace them with new ones any time soon. Products made from quality materials are usually worth investing in, even if they cost more, as you can easily use them for years to come. Of course, this doesn’t mean that quality items have to be expensive. For example, if you want to know where to shop for cotton women’s leggings online, a quick search will provide you with plenty of stores that sell high-quality leggings at affordable prices.
Repair and Alter Your Garments
Learning how to mend your own clothes can save you a lot of money while helping the environment. If you find some damage on a garment—like a stain or a hole—try repairing it first before junking it. You may be able to prevent a still-usable garment from adding to your trash. Plus, addressing damages like stains and holes is a fairly simple process as long as you fix them immediately. This will prevent holes from turning into bigger tears and stains from permanently setting into the fabric.
Additionally, if you’ve recently purchased some nice clothes only to find that they’re ill-fitting, don’t fret. Rather than throwing them out, you can opt to have them altered by a tailor. You’ll be surprised to find how nicely a tailor can transform a garment, making it look like it was made for your body. By altering ill-fitting clothes, you can prevent them from turning into a wasted investment.
Practice Better Garment Care
For eco-friendly fashion, you’ll need to practice better garment care to ensure that your beloved wardrobe pieces last longer. Research shows that keeping your clothes in good condition for at least nine months can lessen water consumption, waste generation, and carbon footprints by twenty to thirty percent each year.
There are many ways to keep your clothes in good condition. For instance, you may want to avoid washing certain garments after every wear, as frequent washing can cause color fading and ruin fabric quality. Clothes like jeans and sweaters don’t have to be laundered after each use unless they’re quite dirty. It also helps to pay attention to the care labels on your garments. Make sure to follow their instructions, as this will prevent you from using cleaning and drying methods that may damage your clothes.
When it comes to drying, it’s best to air-dry your clothes before storing them. Air-drying is gentler on most fabrics compared to the harsh heat from dryers. Folding knitwear will help them retain their shape while using wooden hangers will prevent clothes from being stretched in all the wrong places. You might also want to invest in a steamer since many fashion experts say that it’s the best tool for freshening up your clothes and leaving them wrinkle-free.
Take Stock of Your Wardrobe and Organize It
Before you shop for new threads, try to shop your closet first. Taking stock of your outfits and organizing them is a good way to build a more sustainable wardrobe. After all, you may have some stunning garments that you haven’t used very often. Plus, inventorying your closet will help you figure out if you have any missing fashion staples. This way, you can create a thorough shopping plan that’ll encourage you to make more deliberate purchases. Similarly, searching through your closet may help you find certain items that no longer suit your taste. Rather than disposing of them in the trash, try donating them to charities or organizations that repurpose used clothes.
Donate Clothes You No Longer Need
If you find clothes that you no longer need or want, you can choose to donate them to charities. There are many organizations that accept donations in the form of clothing items. Rather than throwing unwanted clothes away, you can give them to people who have better use for them. Not only will this prevent clothes from ending up in the waste, but you’ll also be making a positive difference in someone’s life. Do be sure that the clothes you donate are in good condition, as they should still be useful to the people you’re donating them to.
Another alternative to donating clothes would be to swap them with friends and family. You may not be fond of a certain garment, but someone you know might be interested. Swapping clothing items can be fun, as you may score some amazing wardrobe pieces during your trading. This kind of clothing circulation can prevent more items from ending up in landfills. You can even swap shoes with your loved ones—all you need to do is give your new pair of kicks a thorough clean.
Besides friends and family, you can also swap clothes with other people. You can easily find big swapping events through social media, digital applications, and online sites. Attending larger swap events means that you can find more unique and stunning garments without having to spend a penny.
Sustainability shouldn’t only be applied to the production processes of clothing brands, but also your own choices as a consumer. This doesn’t mean that you have to compromise style for greener options. By following the tips mentioned above, you can build a practical and beautiful wardrobe collection while still supporting a better future for the planet.