Sustainability & Garment Care
We know that the sea levels are rising and we know that we need to work on our carbon footprint. But, do we know the damage that our clothes are causing the environment? Our regular and mundane chores are more influential than you may think, 39% of a garment's environmental impact comes from consumer care.
Laundry contributes to household waste in the form of plastic waste, chemical residue from your laundry detergent packaging, CO2 from energy consumption and microplastics that come off your synthetic fabrics during the wash.
Our laundry habits play a significant contribution to climate change, energy consumption and environmental pollution. Sustainable fashion starts with conscious consumerism but it doesn’t end there.
By shifting a few simple habits, you can minimize your impact on the earth, get the most life out of your garments which will save you money and learn to simplify your laundry processes. Here are some ways you can lower your laundry footprint by adopting sustainable practices:
Many laundry detergents on the market today contain a host of harmful chemicals including formaldehyde, phosphates, ammonium sulfate, and dioxane. Finding a detergent that does not contain these toxins will make your wash as healthy for your skin and the run-off water as possible.
Keep a look out for low impact packaging solutions for detergents. Listed below are some green alternatives:
Simple, affordable, compostable and entirely natural detergent, try Soap Nuts; Dried nut husks made from soapberry and produce saponin when put in water. Sold in bulk; you then take three to five nuts, place them in a small fabric bag, and toss them in with your wash. They’ll act just as a regular detergent would, and each bag of soap nuts lasts approximately five washes.
Allergies? Soap Nuts are actually a berry, related to the lychee and are not nuts at all. They are completely nut allergy safe!
Package free shop: Laundry Detergent, Made from organic and natural ingredients, one 32oz jar of The Simply Co. laundry detergent will clean up to 60 loads of laundry.
Dr. Bronner's unscented pure Castile liquid is another option! It’s concentrated, biodegradable, versatile and effective (powerful enough for tasks like dishwashing, mopping, laundry and even pest control)
Water Temperature & Washing
Wash your Laundry using cold water.
90% of the energy used by washing machines goes towards heating the water. Washing your laundry in cold water will conserve energy and help preserve your clothes. The detergent you use is what really makes the difference in wash results, not the temperature of the water.
Other than the process being more energetically draining, hot water can be damaging to the fibers and the color quality of the garments. Keep in mind that not all stains respond to hear. For example, sweat can actually set into fabric in hot water. Bypass fading, shrinkage and wrinkles through altering your water temperature!
“According to the American Cleaning Institute, if Americans washed on cold every four out of five loads, each household would save 864 pounds of carbon per year — the same as driving 1,000 miles”
Our general wash care instructions
It is advisable to hand-wash your handloom garments for longevity. Always use cold water to wash handlooms & handweaves. Hang to drip dry your handwoven garments in well ventilated evening settings or shade since direct sunlight causes colour fading.
What if I want to sanitize my garments? White distilled vinegar! All vinegars contain acetic acid, which is the magical ingredient that helps to brighten, soften and improve your laundry due to its PH-balancing properties.
White distilled vinegar is incredibly versatile, when navigating & embodying a sustainable lifestyle. Through incorporating it you can clean both your laundry and washing machine!
How to use it? a combination of 1/8 cup food-grade glycerin, two cups of water and two cups of white vinegar. Use about 1/4 cup per load
Make sure to check with your washing machine manual before using vinegar. If this method doesn’t suit you or your machine, you can purchase cold water detergents made specifically to help get tougher stains out without using warm water
Synthetic garments are a significant source of microplastic pollution, with thousands of fibres washing off every time you do laundry. But as you adjust to only buying sustainable garments there are now products, like the Cora Ball, designed to throw in your washer as a filter to capture the microplastics in your laundry
The Cora Ball is made from diverted or recycled, and completely recyclable, rubber. It is suitable for all types of washing machines and has proven durability with an expected life cycle of over five years!
Let it All Hang Out! Reduce dryer use with a clothesline. Hanging your laundry on the line or laying it flat to air dry will lead the way to:
Cutting back on energy use
Your clothes will dry without static cling or shrinkage and additionally extend the lifespan of your garments!
Naturally whitens and sanitizes fabrics.
There is some sort of environmental impact to almost everything we do but we have the power to pave a path that is least destructive and most loving!
- Take a leap to be a conscious consumer! Avoid pollutants such as synthetic fabrics! If you tend to wear natural fibers more than synthetics, you’re already off to a good start.
- Think twice before you drop your clothes in the laundry basket! Is it actually dirty?
- Invest in a eco-friendly detergent that obtains a positive impact on your skin, garment & the environment
- On your next load of laundry, turn the dial from hot or warm to cold and you'll instantly cut your energy use.
- Unharmful sanitization: White Distilled Vinegar
- Trap Microfibres by using the Cora Ball
- Air Dry your clothes!