It’s no secret that the fashion industry is a major contributor to our growing environmental crisis. The average person spends more than $600 on clothing each year, and the industry uses a lot of water and energy to create clothes. Many people don’t realize how much energy goes into making just one pair of jeans: up to 500 gallons of water, 2,800 pounds of cotton and 1,000 gallons of water-based dye.
In order for us to change the way we think about fashion, we have to change the way we make it. There are many things we can do at home that will help reduce our impact on the environment. Here are three things you can start doing today:
1) Use reusable shopping bags when possible. Shopping with reusable bags is better for the environment because it reduces plastic waste and helps recycle old bags instead of sending them down the drain. It also saves money because reusable bags cost less than disposable ones!
2) Choose natural fibers over synthetic ones whenever possible. Natural fabrics are made from plants or animals (like wool or silk), so they’re biodegradable and don’t contribute carbon emissions into our atmosphere. Synthetic fabrics are made from chemicals, so they’re not as environmentally friendly.
3) Buy secondhand clothes. Buying secondhand means buying used clothing and accessories from thrift stores, consignment shops and flea markets. It’s a great way to save money on your wardrobe while also keeping old clothes out of landfills!
4) Recycle old clothing that can’t be donated or resold. If you have some old clothes that are too worn-down to donate but still wearable, then don’t throw them away! Instead, recycle them into new products like rags or insulation. Many brands actively take recycled clothing, like H&M.
Join Vancouver Sustainable Fashion Week, a Fashion Week that is made of sustainable products, by sustainable activists/designers, and for promoting sustainable fashion in general!