4 Tips For Embracing Sustainable Fashion

When we think about making ethical fashion choices, the sad truth is that we all could be doing more. Sometimes, the challenge is knowing exactly what you can do to make those positive changes. The last thing you want to have to do is to stop enjoying fashion – will you need to only wear clothes made from hemp, and avoid washing your clothes for the rest of your life? In a word: no. There are plenty of smaller, simpler changes you can make to embrace sustainable fashion, and here are 4 tips you can easily follow.

1. Don’t buy anything unless you can commit to wearing it 30+ times

An impulse buy always feels harmless and innocent at the time, and it gives you a momentarily thrill, but the damaging thing is that we probably know in our heart of hearts that we won’t wear the garment many times. Next time you see something and feel that impulse, ask yourself the following 4 questions:

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  • Is this something I really need?
  • How often am I likely to wear it?
  • Do I already own a similar garment?
  • Does it go with any clothing I already own?
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2. Think ‘conscious’ and ‘affordable’ when you shop

It doesn’t have to cost a fortune to purchase ethically-produced clothing. H&M have been developing a Conscious Exclusive collection since 2011, aimed at producing stylish and beautiful clothes made from nothing but sustainable materials. 

Among their recent collections, there have been jacquard jackets made from organic silk, dresses made from recycled polyester and high-neck blouses made from a silky fabric derived from wood pulp called Tencel. All of these come with attractive price tags, so there really is no excuse for avoiding the sustainably-produced products.

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3. Take good care of your clothes so that they last longer

If you can get your clothes to last longer, you won’t need to buy as many clothes as you otherwise would. There are various things you can try to take care of your clothes, such as:

  • Switching to a cooler wash when you do laundry (30 degrees is good)
  • Hang your clothes up to dry, rather than putting them through the tumble dryer
  • Try airing clothes before deciding to wash them – they may not need washing yet!

Remember that when you clean your clothes, the chemicals you use can be toxic to the environment. Natural alternatives like white vinegar can be great for removing stains from things like leather and suede – far more eco-friendly than visiting the dry cleaner.

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4. Be informed

Don’t be afraid to ask the important questions. If a brand isn’t forthcoming about where there clothing comes from, you should ask those questions. Where are the garments made? How are they made? Who makes them? When you ask the right questions, and do some diligent research on the brands and stores you choose to purchase from, you can feel more confident you are doing your bit for sustainable fashion. There are clothing brands that are making an effort for sustainability – you just need to find them.

As things stand, if the fashion industry were a country, it would have the world’s fifth-highest carbon emissions behind the US, China, India and Russia. So much goes into the production, and still over 15 million tonnes of fabric and textiles are discarded every year in the USA alone. 

It is down to us, as individuals, to make the lifestyle changes that will reduce the impact of the fashion industry on our environment, and it only needs small changes to make a big difference.

(This Article was from Guest writer Lucas White of Lucas White Media and was not written by Gails Rails)