The sustainable fashion movement is easy to follow in theory. Simply, we all love the idea of a thriving, eco-friendly future, but have a hard time breaking fast, convenient fashion habits. With more things to do, outfits to wear and kids to entertain, the summer months often call for the benefits of easy fashion.
The trendy tank or flowy shorts may be calling your name, but these are fashion bandaids. Fast fashion garments are often poor quality and don’t last, so acquiring clothes this way may keep you in an endless consumer loop. Sustainable fashion is here as the remedy. Sustainability standards can be upheld while not sacrificing the easy, breeziness of summer fashion.
Here are 5 sustainable fashion tips that are perfect for summer!
Sustainable Summer Fashion Tip 1: Update what you have
It is said that the most sustainable wardrobe is the one you already have. Transforming a garment you already own is a fun and innovative way to update your wardrobe. Consulting a top online or local tailor about their services is an easy process that often provides quality results. Altering a well-loved garment is a great way to keep your favorite clothes in circulation.
Turning an old tee into a tank or cutting and hemming pants into shorts are great ways to add cooler outfit options for the warmer months. Another fun alteration is cutting a maxi dress into a mini dress. Voilà! “New” clothes!
Sustainable Summer Fashion Tip 2: Do mindful laundry
Summer is the season to bare a little more skin than normal. Summer clothing is made of considerably less material than any other season. This means having the option of fitting more clothes per laundry load and ultimately reducing your water consumption weekly. Washing less is an easy way to uphold sustainable, ethical fashion practices.
Other tips on washing mindfully provide a similar level of ease. Spot-cleaning spills on your clothes that are otherwise clean is a sustainability staple. When you are doing your laundry, try using a washing bag to filter microplastics shed from synthetic fabrics. Save electricity and try drying your clothes via wind by hanging them on an outdoor line.
Sustainable Summer Fashion Tip 3: Stick to natural fibers
Natural fabrics such as cotton, linen, and blends of these fabrics are the epitome of “easy, breezy.” Natural fibers are more lightweight and breathable than synthetic ones. This means materials such as linen will likely keep you much cooler than its nylon or polyester counterpart. Hemp, bamboo, and jute are also great materials to look for while building an ethical wardrobe.
The best thing about natural fabrics is that they are biodegradable. As alluded to in the previous section, synthetic fabrics like acrylic, spandex, and polyester shed microfibers when washed or worn in water. These microfibers are made of plastic, which in turn pollute water ecosystems, aquatic animals, and ourselves when we consume seafood. Choosing natural fibers is a sure way of upholding ethical fashion practices.
Sustainable Summer Fashion Tip 4: Support local businesses
Supporting our local communities is sustainability at its finest. When we shop local, we build community-sustaining local practices, where all members are healthy and thriving. This is the very goal of sustainability, maintaining an environment where all can survive and benefit.
Buying local, sustainable fashion supports local artists and designers. Additionally, often shopping in your town or city reduces greenhouse gas emissions from transportation. So take a stroll downtown or stop at your local farmers market for lightweight graphic tees or unique accessories.
Sustainable Summer Fashion Tip 5: Shop sustainable brands
Designers worldwide have started to see the benefits of ethical fashion. Sustainable fashion is a very broad term that encompasses many ethical fashion practices. It is important to know what your clothing is made of- look for those natural fibers that are mentioned above. Garments made of recycled or deadstock fabrics can also be great choices.
To be truly sustainable, it is imperative that not only the product is ethical but also the process. Sustainable brands often practice fair trade and give fair wages to their partners and employees. Many also give back to support sustainable charities or practice carbon-offsetting for their shipping. You can read about most companies’ practices in their “About” sections. Some leaders in the sustainable fashion industry are Reformation, Everlane, Pact, and Hackwith Design House.
Have an easy, breezy, sustainable summer everyone!