How To Dress Sustainably and Do Sustainable Fashion
Sustainable fashion or slow fashion is actually easier than you think, plus you can stay in fashion and save money. Here are 17 easy tips anyone can do to reduce the environmental impact of our wardrobe with ethical fashion choices.
This year has meant lots of changes. One for most of us, being saving money! I used it as an opportunity to look into what sustainable fashion aka slow fashion is. Here’s what I learned…
Stay on trend with these eco-conscious, slow fashion shopping habits, tricks, care instructions & influencers tips. I’m answering all of these questions and more.
What is sustainable fashion?
Why should we learn more about eco-fashion? Don’t worry, it doesn’t mean being off trend, this is a fashion blog after all.
What can we do to reduce our fashion carbon footprint that saves rather than costs money?
Where can we learn more about ethical fashion?
Fast Fashion | We’ve reached a buying stuff peak!
Clothing and fast fashion is saturated with synthetic, mass produced clothing that we don’t really need but feel like it’ll make us happier. It might seem fine on the wallet but we’re already facing an unprecedented climate change.
The way our clothing is manufactured has a massive environmental impact we can help avoid.
Fast Fashion Facts
There’s half a million tonnes of microfibers washed into the oceans each year and total greenhouse gas emissions from textiles production are more than all generated by international flights and maritime shipping combined!
What can do to reduce our fashion footprint?
Ethical fashion, slow fashion or sustainable fashion doesn’t mean spending a fortune on specific brands but making sure the clothes we already own are well taken care of and treasured for a lifetime.
1. Borrow clothes from friends
There are occasions where we want to wear something special and not wear it over and over. Minimize consumption & save money by borrowing from your friends.
2. Learn from your shopping mistakes
When you clear out your wardrobe, be mindful of your mistakes. Note what’s being tossed and whats going on. E.G: is it something you bought because price was too good to not, something you only wore once because it turned out to be not really your style, materials you don’t find comfortable?
Use clear outs as a lesson in what not to buy in the future.
3. Mend your clothes, don’t throw them out
Easy and free. If you can’t do it yourself, give it to your local tailor or if it’s a lose hem just use Wonder Web which just irons on (the needle and thread free solution).
4. Give older pieces a modern update
Take old clothes you love but feel a little tired and/or dated to a local tailor. By simply adding new buttons, adding a tailored fit, changing the length, changing the color, or adding embroidery, you can give clothes a new lease of life and make them fashionable again.
5. Unsubscribe/unfollow any accounts you’re always tempted to buy from
I’m a crow that gets sucked in by shiny things and sales so I have to do this. Out of sight, out of mind and way less temptation.
6. Try to buy less new stuff you don’t need
Think before you buy: Do I need it? Will it really change help my self-esteem? Is it better to save up for something special that will last and still look great in 10 years?
7. Take inspiration, follow and learn from ethical fashion activists
Have a look at ethical fashion influencers Hoda Katebi, Aja Barber, Céline Semaan, Caryn Franklin, Safia Minney, Orsola de Castro, Tansy Hoskins, Kate Fletcher, Dilys Williams, Safia Minney, Eve Dawes. You’re sure to find a style influencer you can relate to and get sustainable fashion inspiration from.
I have so many outfits on repeat right now. Some from when I was 18! It all comes down to taking care of your clothes, shoes and accessories and knowing fashion is cyclical and will come back around. Even if that means adding a modern twist to it.
8. If you need something new, investigate other ways to shop
Second hand shops. I’m not talking about just charity shops but luxury online stores like the realreal.com or rentals like Rent the Runway.
9. Have a look for ethical, sustainable clothing brands
If you can’t find what you need secondhand, have a look for an ethical fashion company. Sustainable clothing brands you can support that take its responsibility to people and the planet seriously.
10. Care for your stuff to help it last longer!
Hand wash your clothes or wash them on cool. Washing your clothes at 30 degrees is reported to reduce energy usage by up to 40% compared to the standard 40-degree wash.
Dry them naturally to further save energy and protect clothes.
11. Upcycle or recycle them when they have really come to the end of the line
There are so many organizations such as Goodwill or Dress For Success that will gladly take your unwanted clothes off of your hands. Do good, feel good, look good!
12. Organize Your Wardrobe
When you can actually see what’s in your closet it makes everything easier to find. Sometimes having less makes it feel like you have more! Be inventive when styling outfits.
Another benefit of having less clutter in our wardrobes/closets, is that our minds are calmer and our headspace is clearer.
13. Try to Always Buy Organic or GOTS Certified Cotton
Microfibres often end up polluting our oceans and are difficult to clean up because their particles are so tiny.
14. If you do have synthetic clothes, invest in a Guppy Bag
Wash all of your synthetic clothing in bags that minimize pollution.
Guppy Bags are a scientifically approved solution against microplastic pollution from washing.
15. Ask Brands Questions When You Aren’t Sure
Knowing the origin and how it reaches its final product will help you make more eco-conscious buying decisions.
For example, shop local: If you live in USA, look for clothing made in the USA to lower your fashion carbon footprint. Chances are, if it’s made in the USA, you’re also supporting fairer wages.
A few brands committed to sustainable fashion are Mother of Pearl, Ninety Percent, Stella McCartney, Mara Hoffman.
16. Check the Quality of Pieces Before Buying
Have a look to see if a piece of clothing is built to last or if the seams are already coming undone. You can also use buyer reviews to check the quality.
17. Learn more about Sustainable Fashion: Fashion Transparency Index
The Fashion Transparency Index discloses how much information brands share about their suppliers, human rights and environmental objectives. It makes learning about Sustainable brands less confusing and gets down to the facts.
Other ways to stay fashionable on a budget | Ethical Fashion & Beauty
If you’re trying to save money, these 12 Tips for Staying Fashionable on a Budget will help keep you fashion forward minus the hefty credit card bill.
Moving on from slow fashion…Now our wardrobe’s sustainable and affordable, let’s move onto how to get savvy with our makeup and skincare spending with these Best Budget Cruelty Free Beauty Products .
Eve Dawes is a Blogger, Podcaster, Mrs. England World 2020, a WBFF Pro Diva, SAG-AFTRA actress, NASM certified Personal Trainer, Founder of Dawes Custom Cosmetics and GlamourandGains.com. Eve's also the host of BFF (beauty, fitness & fashion) segment on Spill The Tea Live! The show for British Expats. Eve has over 15 years experience in the fashion world, is an avid traveller and cruelty-free beauty advocate.