How to Dress More Sustainably

The world is getting more eco-conscious, aware that our actions are having a lasting impact on our environment, the weather, and the creatures that live on this planet. Some damage is already irreversible, but at the moment, if quick action is taken, some damage could be reversed with time. Fast fashion is a well-known problem for the climate – the amount of energy and water used in fast clothing production is vast, and most of it quickly ends up in landfill, leading to plastic and chemical pollution. So what can we do to dress more sustainably? 

Buy From Sustainable Manufacturers 

Businesses in all fields are listening to consumers and trying to produce items in a more sustainable way. Some are focusing on their pollution or energy usage, and others are ensuring that the materials for their products are sourced in an ethical way. You will be able to find products for all aspects of your wardrobe, from accessories to socks. If you’re new to sustainable buying, then why not start small and look for sustainable clothing essentials to replace items that are worn through? It is against the ethos of sustainability to just throw away your wardrobe to buy completely new from sustainable companies – do it bit by bit as you need new clothing. 

Maintain Your Clothes

The convenience of shoving everything in the washing machine and not needing to think about cleaning our clothes carefully is incredible and one that should not be taken for granted. However, it is quite possible that this method of cleaning our clothes is reducing their lifespan. Make sure that you pay attention to the care instructions for your clothes and follow them to keep your clothes going as long as possible. You should always wash the same materials together and experiment with the temperature and spin to see if you can still have clean clothes at a lower temperature and a reduced spin cycle. Drying your clothes outside is not only better for the environment but also better for the clothes. 

Learning simple repair techniques is also a sustainable way to dress. Instead of getting rid of an item of clothing because it is broken, you can try to repair it. Embroidery and clothing dye are great ways to bring an item of clothing back to life – whether it has simply seen better days or you can’t repair it to look the same as it was. You can use dye, embroidery, and sewing to alter your clothes to new styles – think Marge Simpson and the Country Club.

Buy Strategically 

If you can, save money to buy individual pieces strategically. Try to think of clothing pieces as an investment – something that should last you for years to come so that you focus on quality, not quantity. This involves getting rid of the fast-fashion mindset ‘see it, get it,’ which is going to be hard. Create a list of items that you need and refer back to it when shopping – that way, you will buy to fill gaps in your wardrobe rather than on impulse. This is also a good way to resist impulse purchases; if you see something you like, write it down and then check when you’re back home to see if you really do need it. If it’s just an impulse, then you’re unlikely to return to the store for it. This way, you can buy sustainably but still have items of clothing that you love.