We have heard about sustainability a lot. People are trying to minimize their carbon footprints by choosing an alternative option. But in terms of fashion, can you make sustainable choices?
The answer is yes. Many fashion brands are slowly adapting themselves to bring a change. The fashion industry accounts for about 8-10% of global carbon emissions, and nearly 20% of wastewater. This is a huge percentage because for years clothing brands across the world are using unethically practise to flourish their businesses. It addresses the entire manner in which clothing is produced, who produces it, and how long the life span of a product is before it reaches the landfill. The environment, co-existing species and human health are greatly neglected by these brands which is why sustainable fashion is becoming the need of an hour.
There was a need for change which many brands have realized and that is why they are moving towards more sustainable practices. Whether it be a luxury brand Stella McCartney or a budget-friendly brand like h&m, there is a significant growth in the number of sustainable fashion brands. From using eco-friendly fabrics to animal-free leather, these brands are bringing in the change. A little credit goes to the slow fashion movement, sustainable clothing brands are doing their best to lower the fashion industry’s environmental impact by making eco-friendly clothes and running their business on a sustainable business model.
We respect the efforts made by these brands and it is now our time to change.
How can we support and be a part of sustainable fashion, let’s find out in this article?
What Is Sustainable Fashion?
Before knowing how to adopt sustainable fashion we need to make our basics clear. Sustainable fashion or eco-fashion is a term used when a brand uses environmental conscious practices in order to make their product. By using eco-friendly fabric, environmentally safe packaging, renewable energy in their factories, they try their best to reduce their waste in order to minimize their carbon footprints.
Reducing the environmental impact of fashion can combat air pollution, water pollution and overall climate change that could possibly prevent millions of premature deaths over the next century.
The goal of these brands is clear which is to provide comfortable and stylish clothing without compromising with the environment.
How To Practise Sustainable Fashion?
1. Less is more
In order to practise sustainable fashion, we have to start buying less and stop hoarding. Many people use shopping, especially for clothes as an escape mechanism. This leads to the hoarding of clothes sometimes which we don’t even need.
We should be utterly sure about what we are purchasing. Follow shopping hacks and ask yourself some questions- Do you absolutely need it? Will you wear it more than 10 times? Will you like it after a couple of months? Is it just for a trend? When you ask these questions to yourself, you’ll be able to do more reasonable shopping.
2. Go for low impact natural and organic materials:
You should try to purchase low impact and organic materials. Natural fibres are biodegradable and can compost easily whereas synthetic fibres are non-biodegradable and cause a lot of pollution. They release lots of toxic gases and causes water pollution which is not good from an environmental standpoint.
Look for organic certification (GOTS and ZQ certificate for wool to know about the purchase you are making.
3. Watch out for certifications.
Check for the certificates and look out for the information the brand provides. The dyes used by the brands should be eco-friendly and non-toxic. Keep an eye out for the Made in Green by OEKO-TEX and Bluesign certifications, which set out requirements for chemicals used during the manufacturing process.
4. Animal Friendly
Make sure the fabric used is animal friendly and plant-based. You can look out for plant-based leather and faux fur. We should acknowledge the co-existence of other species. The cruelty-free fashion is one way to step up towards the sustainable living
5. Zero or low waste design:
Undoubtedly, the fashion industry generates lots of waste. We should look out for brands that minimize the amount of water and energy used in the process of manufacturing. They should try to reduce waste by using biodegradable packaging alternatives and avoiding plastics.
6. Prefer slow fashion over fast fashion
Slow fashion advocates buying better quality, durable garments. There are many slow fashion brands that are trying to create awareness and bring a change towards the approach of fashion. It is ethical and sustainable. Unlike fast fashion which is made up of cheaper resources that do not last long, slow fashion is a better alternative.
7. Upscale it
We all have clothes in our closets which we do not want to wear anymore and are completely fed up with. Do not worry and dont discard them. Upscale them and create something new out of them. It is a good way of reusing your old clothes.
8. Avoid greenwashing
As consumers become increasingly aware of their environmental footprint, brands are getting clever with their marketing ploys. Greenwashing is the term used when brands use vague and misleading claims. Terms like ‘eco-friendly’, ‘sustainable’, ‘conscious’, ‘responsible’ which are also called buzzwords should be checked before making a purchase. The brand should be able to support its claim and shouldn’t be just used to create false claims.
9. Take good care
Always take good care of your clothes. When you take good care they last long. Manhandling clothes, not washing them properly can result in early damage. Following washing instructions, using good fabric cleaners, storing them nicely are some ways you can make your clothes last longer than they usually would.
10. Try renting
Clothes renting is becoming increasingly popular all over the world. If you don’t have to make a hefty investment or you know you’ll only wear a dress once, renting is a perfect option. Renting is a sustainable option and many people are embracing it with open hearts.
11. Support sustainable brands
We should try and lend our support to the sustainable brands that are making an effort towards the environment. Making an investment in these brands encourage them to do better and evolve. Understanding the new preferences, more brands will be encouraged to adopt sustainable and eco-friendly measures in their manufacturing..
Our Final Thoughts
Adopting a sustainable lifestyle is a need of an hour. The climate crisis and the greenhouse gases emission are real. If we start doing our bit now then only we could prevent damage to nature. It is not easy to change habits very quickly but small and gradual changes will lead you towards a happier, guilt-free life. This also ensures we are giving our future generation a better place to live in.
So don’t hesitate, start doing your bit from today!