Sustainable living isn’t just minimising the amount of single-use products we buy, it is considering the process of making every product we buy. Clothing is a really important thing to get right, for many reasons! For example; is the product good quality, comfortable, breathable fabric, fashionable (if that’s your thing). Do many of us consider beyond the point of wearing and shoving it in our wardrobes with the rest of our clothes?
Sustainable clothing means looking at the garment through its whole life cycle. For example, how and where the product is made. We, as the consumer, want to know where our clothes are made and whether the staff who are making these clothes are treated fairly. We also need to look at the quality of the product and consider it’s longevity. Buying into fast-fashion creates a massive contribution to landfill, selling cheap, poorly made products that barely last more than 3 wears. Lastly, we need to consider the fabric being used to make the clothes we wear. I now want to only purchase clothes that have ethically made fabric, that is safe on skin and has a smaller carbon footprint.
It is no secret that the mainstream clothing brands do not bring the sustainability of their products to the forefront; by glazing over the issue and focusing on how cheap the garment is. Fast fashion is growing in popularity, especially over lockdown when no one could go out to shops. I won’t lie, I have purchased several products in the past from these brands, such as Missguided, Nasty Gal and Boohoo. However, I have become sick and tired of the clothes being so flimsy and breaking so quickly. Unless you spend upwards of £30 (which is considered expensive for these brands) the quality is just not there. This is one factor which turned me off buying from these brands. The other factor for me is the impact on the planet.
The fabrics used to make these cheap, almost single-use garments for fast-fashion are terrible for the planet. The fabrics are usually synthetic, poorly made and are not good for our skin. They are packed with harsh chemicals which we should not put directly on our bodies. These fabrics, when binned, do not break down either. They just contribute to the ever-growing landfill waste which is ruining our oceans and wildlife.
I know this is heavy information. So heavy in fact, that a lot of us tend to turn a blind eye and continue to purchase because it is cheap and convenient. We need to stop this bad habit we have all fallen into and stop to consider what we are spending our hard-earned cash on. Sustainable products are the way forward for many things, but especially clothes.
Recently, I have vowed that I will no longer buy cheap clothes and only invest in slightly more expensive, sustainably made garments. I’m trying to buy much higher quality clothes, less often, that will hopefully last a lot longer. In doing so, I have been doing my research and have come across some great brands for sustainable fashion.
& Other Stories – Sustainable Collection
This brand is known already for its good quality. A slightly more expensive high street brand, that provides high-quality garments and stunning fashion pieces. I already loved this brand, I only have a few items from them but I whole-heartedly love every single one. I recently looked on their website and typed in ‘Sustainable Material’ on their search bar and LOADS came up. They label their products where they have been made sustainably and they also have products which are made with eco-friendly fabrics, such as Tencel Lyocell. I recently purchased 2 new vest tops from their Sustainable Collection, and I have to say the quality is excellent. They also feel great to wear knowing that they are better for my skin and the planet.
The two vest tops below are from & Other Stories’ sustainable range. The white racer cut tank top is made from organic cotton, which is much more sustainable than regular cotton, as it uses much less water to process. The black V neck is made from Tencel Lyocell which is a sustainable fabric.
Nu-In Fashion – Sustainable Brand
Nu-in Fashion is a discovery for me. They are doing amazing things. Their whole brand is dedicated to affordable, sustainable fashion. They use both eco-friendly materials as well as recycled fabrics to give them a second life. I have so far purchased two items from them; Jumper and Jeans shown in the images below.
The jumper below is made from 75% Ecotec Cotton, 20% Recycled Polyester and 5% Mixed Recycled Fibres. This jumper is incredibly soft and comfortable.
The jeans below are made from 50% Recycled Cotton and 50% Organic Cotton. This is great for two reasons; the regular cotton (which uses a lot of water and pesticides to make) is getting a second life and the rest is organic cotton, which uses 91% less water than normal cotton and no pesticides and is all around better for the planet. The jeans are very comfortable and they are of high quality, it doesn’t even compare to the high street made jeans.
H&M – Conscious Collection
The conscious collection is a good option if paying for high prices isn’t an option. As H&M is generally quite a cost-effective option and the quality is decent, the conscious collection is a good alternative to their mainstream products. As H&M’s products vary on quality, you’re better off spending slightly more on their Conscious Collection as their more expensive products can be great. I would like to see H&M making their Conscious clothing a bigger feature than their other brands in the future.
Finisterre – Sustainable Brand
Finisterre is a Certified B Corp which sustainability at the heart of the business. They make clothes and hiking accessories. All of their clothes are made from sustainable materials and their passion for the planet is at the core of what they do. One of the most sustainable services that Finisterre provide is their repair service. For any of the Finisterre garments you own, they offer an in-house repair service for many different types of damage such as tears, holes, and various garment refreshing services. The most sustainable clothes are the ones you already wear; therefore, Finisterre helps you keep your garments alive for longer.
So, there you have it. There are plenty of sustainable options out there to opt for when you next need to buy clothes. Outside of these brands mentioned, there are loads of other brands out there, which I will continue to share about on my platforms. I hope this information has helped you realised how much there is to consider when you next spend your money on new clothes.