From increasing air pollution to climate change every year, some industries are responsible for deteriorating the ecosystem and one of them is the fashion industry. This is primarily because from manufacturing to the final sale of the garment, each stage usually requires the use of chemicals, plastics, non-biodegradable raw materials, and the practice of other environmentally harmful techniques due to which our planet is suffering day by day.
To protect our ecosystem, the concept of Sustainable Fashion came into existence. Sustainable Fashion refers to the practice in which all stages of garment production and distribution are exercised in an environmentally friendly manner. This movement tends to spread the awareness among consumers to buy and consume sustainable outfits, which are manufactured and distributed causing no harm to the environment. The process of creating green apparels starts from creating designs, selecting fabrics, raw materials, manufacturing, packaging and distribution in a manner that ensures no damage to the planet.
The concept of sustainable fashion has become a topic of interest and concern over the years. It is now widely noticed due to the coverage in media, workshops, debates and seminars around the world. As more and more customers are becoming aware, many brands start taking initiative to convert their business model and design their garments taking the environment in concern as well as treating workers in a better manner. With more support from people, more brands will aim to follow sustainable clothing.
Why Sustainable Fashion is Important?
Sustainable fashion may be a new concept for some people but it is very crucial to understand that why we need it. The fashion and textile industry happens to be the second most polluting industry after the oil industry. It is said that thousands of chemicals are used to make garments from scratch and if any one of them doesn’t sell or becomes an outdated trend, it is dumped adding pollution to the atmosphere.
Most of the customers like to shop for stylish clothes that are available at cheap rates, which is quite obvious. But many of those cheap, stylish clothes are manufactured with polyester blended fabrics. These synthetic fabrics are wrinkle-free and after sometimes cause irritation on the skin. Tees and tops in synthetic fabrics start to stink after a few washes, due to which they are discarded. But, before buying and discarding these clothes, do we know that it takes around 200 years to decompose that piece of cloth?
Thus, it is important for us to know that we should opt for clothes that are made from organic fabrics such as cotton, silk, hemp, linen, etc. and are long-lasting. The fibres of these fabrics
grow naturally and hence they cause no harm to the environment. On the other hand, synthetic fabrics such as Nylon, Rayon, Polyester, Spandex, Acrylic, etc. should be dumped to save the planet, as they are chemical and polymer based ones.
If consumers support and demand for sustainable clothing after understanding the pros of it, then the fashion brands will start taking their demands into notice. It is consumers who have to stand against synthetic fabrics or chemical based fabrics in order to make clothing brands realize what they should sell. Once, every customer starts to shop wisely then we can see many benefits of it in the near future.
Also, nowadays people are more into flaunting their outfits on social media due to which they don’t want to repeat the same outfit again. They unnecessarily shop for more and more outfits leading to exploitation of natural resources. Therefore, it is important that people should know about its adversity and cut down on their unwanted needs so that they can live in a healthy environment. People should start a new trend of Sustainable Lifestyle, instead of flaunting their new outfits every other day. They should encourage people to repeat their outfits and also to buy clothes that are made from organic fabrics and not the chemical based ones. Once, people start to adopt sustainable fashion lifestyle, it is surely going to bring about some better changes in the long run.
Is there any forum to support Sustainability in Fashion?
There is a forum too to support sustainable practices in fashion industry. The forum is named as EFF (Ethical Fashion Forum). It was established in 2006 and is a non-profit organization that aims to raise awareness about sustainability and green fashion among people. To diminish poverty and environmental damages, the forum provides the needed tools and resources.
EFF has thousands of members in over 100 countries with the same objective, to raise the bars for fashion industry and make it run by keeping environment and planet in concern. So, to make it happen, EFF has come out with policies with top ethical bodies to form and spread ethical and sustainable practices to benefit society as well as the earth. Thus the main motive of EFF is to make fashion business develop in three variants; social, commercial and environmental.
How can customers select sustainable fashion clothes?
First of all, a customer should search for organic fabric clothes. This does not mean that they should buy regular cotton clothes to support the movement but the organic cotton clothes. Organic cotton grows naturally while the inorganic cotton requires harmful pesticides and a lot other chemicals just to make a single piece of shirt. Customers can select the organic cotton clothes through the certified tags such as OCS (Organic Content Standards) and GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard). These tags ensure that the garments are manufactured socially and sustainably. Thus, every time when a customer purchases outfit made from organic fabric, he/she’ll be saving lots of water, energy and carbon emissions.
Secondly, while purchasing clothes, customers should look for outfits labeled under Fair Trade Act. This ensures that no animal is harmed during the entire process of manufacturing and distribution of the product. It also means that the cruelty-free outfit is not made from leather or fur. Not only this, the tag also ensures an ethical work environment in which the workers are treated properly and paid adequate wages.
In this way customers can support Sustainable fashion and spread the awareness around themselves. Whatever customers demand, brands will manufacture that. So, it’s our responsibility now to demand for organic, recyclable clothes that are long lasting, timeless and stylish at the same time. Whereas, trendy clothes exist until the trend gets outdated and then they become useless and are discarded to create pollution. If we all come together and take the initiative to support green sustainable fashion, then surely soon we will see some better changes for the environment as well as for the whole planet.