There are a variety of different ways that you can shop sustainably. Making some changes to your shopping habits are an easy way to reduce our carbon footprint and protect the planet’s natural resources.
Here are some ways to sustainably shop for your clothes and build a sustainable wardrobe.
Buy From Sustainable Brands
Choose ethical brands that care about the environment, pay their workers a fair wage, and are transparent across their entire supply chain. These brands are a great way to support a better fashion industry. Many companies continue to use unethical labour practices despite promoting sustainable clothing lines that are made from renewable materials. It is important to do your research on a brand before buying from them.
Shopping sustainably doesn’t necessarily mean buying something new; buying pre-owned clothing from thrift shops, consignment stores, vintage sources, and online resale shops can be a great alternative, and are better for the planet (and your bank account!). Shopping secondhand reduces the impacts on the environment and waste from the overproduction of new merchandise.
Invest in Clothing That You Will Like For a Long Time
It is likely that sometimes what you may be looking for can’t be found at a sustainable brand or a thrift store. It is perfectly okay to purchase a new piece of clothing you know will remain in your wardrobe for many years. While it may not be made with your preferred fabric, or the brand may not be totally transparent, the garment holds a lot of weight in terms of longevity and value.
Look for clothing made with eco-friendly and sustainable fabric fibers instead of synthetic fabrics, as well as materials that have dyed with eco-friendly dyes or plants. Natural alternatives to synthetic fabrics include organic cotton, hemp, organic linen, wool, Lyocell and Micromodal. Polyester, nylon, spandex, and acrylic are some synthetics fabrics to avoid as they are made from petroleum, a high-emission fossil fuel, which increases the amount of microplastics in rivers and oceans that come from the synthetic fibers that shed during washing.
Organize a Clothing Swap
Hosting a clothing swap with friends and neighbours is a great way of adding new clothing to your wardrobe, all the while reducing the environmental impacts of not buying new clothes. Clothing swaps provide an excellent opportunity to give your unwanted clothing away to someone else, while finding items that you may find more appealing. The concept of clothing swaps helps reduce our environmental footprint and supports a circular economy.