Reduce Your Impact With These 5 Simple Clothing Care Habits
10 months ago | Features|
Image: clothes air drying on the line. Image source.
Are you looking to reduce your wardrobe impact? Well aside from the tried and true advice of Dame Vivienne Westwood – “buy less, choose well, make it last” – there are also some everyday clothing care habits that you can adopt to extend the life of your clothes. These habits help to reduce your waste and energy output, for a cleaner, greener wardrobe overall.
Just bear in mind that well-made garments and sustainable materials are your best friends when it comes to clothing that is built to last. So, once you’ve got those foundations down, it is all in the TLC.
Here are our five top tips when it comes to caring for your clothes well.
1) Wash less, wear more
Sometimes we can get into the habit of over-washing our clothes. We may wear a piece once and then automatically throw it in the laundry basket out of force of habit. But this can wear down our most-loved clothing items much faster than is necessary. So consider wearing your clothes more and washing them only when they really need it.
2) Handwash where possible
The way we wash our clothes is super important too. Where washing machines can be harsh on our garments – and also on the planet, using vast amounts of water and electricity – handwashing is a great way to reduce your impact. We recommend handwashing in cold water where possible, to prolong the life of your clothes.
3) Choose a gentle eco detergent
What you wash your clothes with can also affect your impact. Where conventional laundry detergents contain some nasty ingredients that can actually cause our clothes to break down faster, gentle eco detergents are a great way to keep your clothes in good nick for longer. They are also less harmful to the ocean and marine life, when washed down the sink afterwards.
4) Take care in drying and storing your clothes
The way we dry and store our clothes is really important too. Air drying is much better for the environment and for your clothes than chucking them through a spin cycle in the clothes dryer, because it requires less energy and is less abrasive on our garments. Carefully folding your garments is usually a good storage solution as well, because hanging can place strain on some delicate items like knitwear.
5) Recycle properly
If you find that there are certain pieces you no longer wear, don’t let your old clothes gather dust in your closet. Organise a clothing swap with your friends instead or donate them to someone in need. Once your clothing really has reached the end of its life, though, it's important to research your local textile recycling facilities and make sure that you’re recycling those garments properly.
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