It was only a few years ago that my clothing purchases were based predominantly on the style and price point of the piece. My priority with fashion had always been putting together great, comfy outfits at budget price. While I did shop mainly at secondhand clothing stores, I couldn’t help being drawn to the alluring bargains and styles by other designers or fast fashion stores at times. Being uneducated and oblivious about the importance of fabric origins and qualities, what the labels read were rarely a deciding factor.
A few years and a lot of research later, my approach to consumerism has drastically changed. I’m continually more aware of the products I’m buying, the materials they are made of and ultimately the companies I am investing in.
Plastics, being the enemy of our environment are an obvious evil invention that we need to phase out immediately. Plastic bottles, straws, packaging are items that we can immediately recognise and eliminate but unfortunately not all plastics are that easy to identify.
Every day and night we are surrounded by fabrics; Our clothing, our furniture, our bed sheets, car seats, our upholstery. Some of the most common fabrics getting around are Polyester, Rayon, Arcylic and Fleece.
These are what we call, Synthetic Fabrics, they are often made from dihydric alcohol, terpthalic acid, polycrylonitriles, causeic soda, ammonia, acetone, sulphuric acid, petroleum and perfluorinated chemicals.
Synthetic fabric is toxic, cheap and affects your health as well as the health of our planet.
Every time we wash these polyester and acrylic pieces, they shed thousands of micro plastics down the drain.
Micro-plastics are tiny fibres and fragments of plastic and are among the most abundant form of debris in the environment. The fibres that are released, travel to your local wastewater treatment plant where majority of them will pass through directly into our rivers, lakes and are often found on the ocean surface, the deep sea and the marine food chain.
We can’t see it, we can’t clean it up and we are generally clueless to this pollution that doesn’t degrade and inevitably ends up in the stomachs of our animal friends.
Fortunately, their are natural alternatives out there!
We just need to be aware, educate others and invest responsibility. Take the time to read the labels, research the brand and look for well-made products that use linen, hemp and organic cottons. Quality clothing may seem expensive and in some cases overpriced but raw materials are more superior, and take time and love to be woven into beautiful fabrics that are soft and durable on opposed to chemically treated disposable pieces. These are worth the investment.