EASY WAYS TO MAKE YOUR WARDROBE MORE SUSTAINABLE
You’ve started to make a few eco-friendly upgrades to your home, your food and your purchasing habits, but have you thought about the clothes that are already sat in your wardrobe?
The statistics about clothing waste are shocking to say the least, so there’s no doubt that action needs to be taken. Of the clothes we own, it’s said that 57% of these will end up in landfill, and it’s only getting worse. The time is now to make your wardrobe more sustainable. However, we know this can be a daunting thought and a huge issue to try to tackle as an individual.
Creating a more sustainable wardrobe doesn’t mean that you have to get rid of all of your favourite pieces, or limit your shopping options. It’s about learning the facts so you can make informed choices which link up to your belief’s and what matters to you on your conscious journey, as well as some slight changes in your day-to-day life and your mindset. We’ve put together some of our favourite tips and mindset shifts which you can easily adopt to make your wardrobe a little more sustainable.
EASY WAYS TO MAKE YOUR WARDROBE MORE SUSTAINABLE:
Buy organic cotton
Most people don’t realise that made-made fibres like polyester are actually a plastic product. This means that each time you wash your clothes, the plastic is melting and slowly releasing tiny plastic particles into our water. These particles can’t be filtered out so eventually this plastic ends up in our oceans.
So switch to buying organic cotton clothing instead. Organic cotton is carbon neutral and can be grown without the use of pesticides and toxic chemicals, meaning that it’s good for the planet and good for your overall health.
Wash your clothes on a cold and line dry
Washing your clothes with cold water, at 30 degrees Celsius or lower is not only better for your clothes but better for the environment and better for your utilities bills. Washing them less, after a couple of wears or when they show visible signs of dirt, will also dramatically reduce your environmental impact.
Drying your clothes outside in the sun will not only save your energy bills but it also helps to kill any nasty bugs and reduces your impact on the environment.
Get to know your clothes journey
Get to know the clothes you are thinking of buying and the brands you are shopping with by investigating the supply chain they use and the ethics of the brand itself. Getting informed is one of the best ways to ensure that you are looking out for the planet, and it also means that you will be able to make the best choices for you. There are so many brands out there who are adopting a more transparent shopping method, by showing the factories and suppliers they use or producing locally. Most brands are also happy to answer your questions if you fancy getting in touch with them directly.
Organise your wardrobe
Organising your wardrobe so you can actually see what’s in it is one of the best ways to become a more conscious consumer. By getting organised, not only will you be able to select your outfits without the stress of rummaging through a mound of clothes, you will be able to better identify those staple pieces which you are missing which might mean that you actually wear more of your clothes, and you might even find some gems hidden at the back which you had totally forgotten about. This means you are better equipped to make great style choices from your own wardrobe and less likely to buy more.
Trash the trends, buy classic
Get out of the habit of buying clothes which are ‘on-trend’ – designed to be worn for a season or two and then disposed of. Fast fashion brands are built on this with the sole intention of persuading us to buy more and more just to stay up with the latest fashions. Invest in quality pieces in classic colours and designs which you will wear more, and for longer, so that you can buy less overall.
Try out the #30Wears campaign designed by Livia Firth, the founder of Eco Age (a company which certifies brands for their sustainability). This campaign encourages us to think ‘Will I wear it a minimum of 30 times?’ and only buy an item if we really know that we’ll wear it.
You should NEVER put your clothes in the bin. Instead, donate your clothes to second-hand or vintage shops. Not only will these pieces find a new home with someone that will love these, but you’ll also make a contribution to the charity. Humanitarian charities often send any unwanted clothes to third-world countries who desperately need them too, so you’ll be doing good. Use the one-in-one-out policy and donate an item when you buy a new one to avoid the clutter build up.
Mend and make alterations
If you love a piece but never find yourself wearing it, or it’s become slightly uncomfortable around the (ehem) mid-line, make some alterations yourself or find a good tailor who will help you to transform it in to a piece that you do love. This is also a great mindset to have when buying vintage pieces.
Find your clothes a loving home
300,000 tonnes of unwanted clothes are binned, not recycled, every year so it’s clear that sharing our wardrobes and contributing to the circular economy (an economic system aimed at minimising waste and making the most of resources) is a step toward a more sustainable future. If you really don’t want to keep a piece in your wardrobe any more, trying to find a new home where it will be loved with friends or family.
Clothing swap parties are a great way do this, and bag yourself those pieces that you’d always coveting in your friends wardrobes, without spending any money.
Want more sustainable fashion? We think you’ll like our article, 5 OF THE BEST AFFORDABLE ETHICAL CLOTHING BRANDS