Sunday, April 22, 2018 – Earth Day
Aside from choosing brands recognized for their ethical and eco-friendly practices, dressing responsibly is about resisting aggressive marketing tactics, taking good care of the clothes you already own, and focusing on basics that can be mixed and matched to suit your moods.
It’s also about changing the way you shop! As consumers, we share a part of the responsibility.
Here are 5 tips for a more ethical fashion sense!
1. Invest in quality
Focus on making better choices and buying less, as opposed to turning to throwaway fashion. Being a good consumer means making smart choices. On average, women wear only 30% of what’s in their closet (according to a study by Wrap). Imagine the waste! Our jeans, shirts and dresses shouldn’t be throwaway items—they should be durable goods. Investing in quality, timeless styles that will last several seasons is the first step towards more responsible consumer behaviour. Pair them with a few trendy pieces featuring a splash of colour, floral, stripes or dots!
2. Give your clothes a second life
Spring is the perfect time to clean out your closet! Whatever you do, don’t throw out your clothes—no matter what condition they’re in! According to RECYC-Québec, each person throws away 24 kg of clothes every year. Put together, these 190 000 tons of fabric would form a pile 55-metres high, as high as an 18-storey building. What’s the solution? Give them a second life by taking them to a drop-off location or giving them to charity. Your items will be sold, given, sorted for recycling or used to make something new.
3. To wash or not to wash?
Did you know that approximately 25% of a clothing item’s ecological footprint is made after purchase? Eco-friendly fashion also involves learning to care for your clothes! By washing your clothes less often and setting a lower water temperature, you reduce your ecological footprint and keep your clothes looking better for longer. Also, consider using biodegradable detergent and avoid fabric softeners. If you can, let your clothes air dry. Lastly, dry cleaning is to be avoided as much as possible given the use of chemical solvents. And don’t forget that one large load per week is better than running two small cycles!
4. Make a shopping list
Are you the type to make spur-of-the-moment purchases that you don’t really need? Take inventory of your wardrobe and make a list of what you need. For your next shopping trip, it will be easier if you follow a list! It allows you to lay out your expenses, set your priorities and stay on track. You’ll also avoid coming home with clothes that don’t match anything in your closet!
5. Support your local industry
When possible, choose locally made clothes and accessories. You’ll be helping your environment (fewer miles means fewer emissions), supporting your local industry, and encouraging Quebec business and job growth. Here’s another good tip: keep watch for end-of-season sales!