Eco-friendly clothing is not a luxury, it is a necessity today. It is the process where the manufacturer decides on the fabric and ends up in your curated wardrobe and lasts really long. Consumers across the globe are making more conscious choices when it comes to fashion and thus, helping the people, animals, and our planet.
Sustainable fashion is a revolution that aims to redesign the whole fashion industry for better. With ever-evolving fashion styles, ideations, influences, technologies, and innovation, sustainable fashion is constantly redefining and offers many advantages to the apparel world.
Here are the benefits of sustainable fashion:
1.Easy to maintain:
Eco-fashion products are produced from natural resources and do not call for any special washing and maintenance. Imagine buying a product from bulk manufacturing, which if not treated carefully will not give you the wearability you desired and due to the poor quality, you cannot really wear such clothing more than six times.
2.Good for health:
Production of regular cotton requires harmful pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, and fertilizers. Around 8000 hazardous chemicals are used in textile processes during washing, bleaching, dying, and treatment. Many of these chemicals are carcinogenic and may be the reason for bad allergies, constant itching, and redness. Organic cotton on the other hand utilizes little to no chemicals in growing and processing. Also, organic fabrics feel so much better on your skin.
The most embraced fashion industry kills 4.30 billion animals per year. The pelts and skins are used to make products such as fur, wool, leather, down, and silk. Animals such as sheep, cows, minks, pigs, goats, rabbits, crocodiles, birds, and even snakes among others are poorly treated and slaughtered in the name of fashion. Sustainable fashion brands have increasingly embraced the use of cruelty-free and vegan alternatives. Fashion is now produced from raw materials such as polyester obtained from the trash in oceans, plant-based leather (java), silk from yeast, bio-fabricated vegan wool, leather from leaves of pineapple, mushroom, and so on. There are great innovations in this sector and there is plenty of room for more.
4.Saves water and environment:
Water is a major resource for the fashion industry. From manufacturing, dyeing, processing, and finishing, all steps require water extensively. It takes a whopping 2,700 litres of water to produce a single T-shirt. Fashion industry alone produces approximately 17-20% of wastewater globally, of which only 20% receives proper treatment. 80% of deforestation is for agricultural production and cotton occupies 2.5% of it. Organic cotton utilizes 91% less water as compared to conventional cotton. Sadly, only 1% of cotton production globally is organic. Linen, hemp, REFIBRA™ & recycled fibers like recycled cotton are among other sustainable fabrics that require little to no water during the production phase.
5.It is cost-effective and unique:
Repurposing and reusing are the main slogans of eco-fashion, and hence, it is cheap. Sustainable fashion might seem expensive at the buying stage, but imagine wearing the products for years on end as compared to the poor-quality fast fashion products that wear out soon, it does not seem so expensive now, does it? Considering the thrifting option, the eco-outfit has an obvious added financial value as well. Moreover, while thrifting on may for certain stumble upon vintage gems which add uniqueness to your fashion ensemble. Since sustainable fashion does not promote bulk manufacturing, it definitely is unique to one’s style and wardrobe.
The pandemic has bought to light the plight of children and workers in the fashion industry. The proponents of fast fashion, practice inhumane manufacturing methods, where factory workers, mostly young women, and children are paid below the legal minimum wage, and forced to work long hours in unsafe environments. These sweatshops are established in developing countries like Indonesia, Bangladesh, The Philippines, and Sri Lanka where there are no schooling facilities for children and the masses are dependent upon farming and garment factories to earn a livelihood. Ethical brands strive to provide humane working conditions, health care, and fair wages for their workers and show empathy toward creating economic opportunities for the worker community.
With the advent of sustainable fashion, local brands gaining importance again. The local production houses have a better understanding of body types, culture, and preferences of consumers, and can provide fashion at much affordable costs. Also, while sourcing raw materials saves transportation costs, it also helps reduce the emission of CO2 and greenhouse gases. Consumers are making a more conscious choice of buying from local manufacturers. This gives a boost to the economy and helps one’s country grow.
Clothing plays a big role in our day-to-day life, and a positive choice by opting for eco-ethical fashion will help affect change. As a consumer, we have to be the change we want to see. By committing to sustainable fashion, and using as many recycled, organic, ethical, and upcycled as possible, we are pledging to reduce the pressure on the limited resources and help restore the balance between people and our beloved Earth.