Eco-Friendly Clothing


What makes clothing eco-friendly? Is it produced in a socially responsible manner? Is it a natural sustainable fiber that doesn’t deplete the planet of its most valuable resources? Does the production of your clothing cause more pollution than necessary?

The problem is, when you walk into an ordinary clothing store, there is no way of knowing! You can easily purchase eco-friendly clothing online and many major designers are now featuring eco friendly fabrics like hemp and bamboo. If you are really passionate about this area of green, perhaps deeper research will help you to determine where you can shop.

Vegan clothing is harder to find (but becoming more readily available. When it comes to vegan clothing, you can be sure that no animals were harmed in the making of the materials. Wool is not considered vegan, but can be eco-friendly. It depends on your point of view. Not all vegan clothing is good for the environment, because of the use of synthetics that are not biodegradable. As with many of my green living tips, this is one area that takes consistent reading of labels and a thorough education about how and where clothing is produced.

Eco-Friendly Clothing: A bamboo T-shirt
Eco-Friendly Clothing: A bamboo T-shirt

Understanding Eco-Friendly Clothing and Fabrics

Bamboo and hemp are by far superior to organic cotton for quite a few reasons. Although organic cotton is natural, it uses far more water in both growth and production of the fiber. Organic cotton is a good alternative to standard cotton or the dreaded polyester, but it isn't the greenest way to go!

Bamboo and hemp are fast growing plants that don't require and excessive amount of water and don't pollute the environment in growth or production. The fabrics developed are superior to synthetics, and easy to care for and are incredibly soft.

What's wrong with synthetics? Many require the use of petroleum products, contain chemical residues that will be absorbed by your skin and pollute the environment during production.

You will find that most companies that create eco-friendly clothing also produce their clothing in a socially responsible manner, paying employees a fair wage and not employing children.

Watch the videos for more details and a closer look at the latest eco-friendly clothing.

Hemp Fashion
Hemp Fashion

A closer look at bamboo clothing:

Tips for an Eco-Friendly Wardrobe

Here are some basic suggestions to keep in mind when you are shopping for clothing for you and your family:

  1. Choose clothing that doesn't use animal products, from socially responsible companies. This may take a little investigating.
  2. Avoid synthetic “mystery” fibers.
  3. Bamboo clothing is a wonderful clothing option from a renewable source. It may not sound soft and comfy…similar to silk and cotton it is a breathable fiber, easily washed and cared for and extremely wrinkle resistant. Many designers are now using it to create their lines of eco-chic clothing because of it’s wonderful flow and softness.
  4. Hemp is more durable, softer and requires less water than cotton to produce. It even provides better UV protection than other fabrics. Look for clothing made from hemp. Some of the top designers are no including this eco-friendly fabric in their fashion lines. Hemp is also a great option for home furnishings fabric.
  5. Vintage clothing is making a comeback. Take a look in consignment shops for gently used clothing.
  6. Investigate clothing, handbags and shoes made from recycled materials. Many companies are now creating clothing and handbags from some interesting recycled materials.
  7. Choose jewelry made from recycled glass and other materials for an interesting necklace or conversation piece.
  8. When shopping for new clothes, select a classic style that will last for years rather than trendy styles that you will get bored with or will be "out" next season.
  9. Only buy clothing that you will really wear - avoid impulse buying!
  10. Rent formal wear for weddings and other events. Women's evening wear rentals are now available in most cities.
  11. Buy some gender neutral clothes for your kids that can be passed on to someone else and easily shared with siblings.
  12. Dress casual more often! Clothing that needs to be dry cleaned leaves a bigger carbon footprint.
  13. Buy wash-n-wear clothing whenever possible. Avoid the chemicals of dry cleaning for your health and the environment.
  14. Tired of your clothes? Host a clothing swap - get a bunch of friends together and swap what you no longer wear.


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Comments 19 comments

Narayan 7 years ago

I like this article very much. Point No. 12 is very good point, specially for children. Children grow very fast so unisex clothings that bought for bigger children also equaly good for younger ones.

If there are more unisex clothings for big people, it is much better.


amy jane profile image

amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut Author

Thank you Narayan, I'm glad you enjoyed this! I have three girls, so it is easy to make sure that everything gets well used in our home. I think it is harder for families with boys and girls (and costly). Buying unisex clothing does help save money and is less wasteful.

Thank you for reading!


thelesleyshow profile image

thelesleyshow 7 years ago from US

As a mother of boys and girls I think uni-sex clothing is brilliant. My daughters only wear jeans and t-shirts anyways so it's not a big deal. What a great hub! That's why your score is a solid 100! Thumbs up!!


amy jane profile image

amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut Author

Thanks Lesley! It is easier when your kids aren't too picky about what they wear. I love to be able to save things for the "next kid in line," especially shoes. :)


LondonGirl profile image

LondonGirl 7 years ago from London

Isaac doesn't care what he wears, so quite a lot of his early life has been spent kitted out in the stuff my mother, grandmother and great-grandmother sewed and knitted for the four of us when we were kids. Other than the dresses and skirts, uni-sex all the way!


amy jane profile image

amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut Author

That's so cute! I love handknitted baby and children's sweaters! How nice that you have all those clothes saved. You're luck he isn't too picky. Boys are good about that until they get a little older. :)


LondonGirl profile image

LondonGirl 7 years ago from London

When he was about 6 to 12 months old, he wore a jumper my great-granny knitted when my mother was pregnant with me. We have a photo of each of the four of us, and Isaac, all wearing the same dungarees that my mother sewed, and the jumper. WE all look pretty similar, too (-:


amy jane profile image

amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut Author

That is so cute! You will have to save the outfit now for your future grandbabies! Can you imagine passing it down another generation? I love traditions like that.


midnightbliss profile image

midnightbliss 7 years ago from Hermosa Beach

i love your article and your suggestions. I've seen a fabric made of bamboo and i would have though that bamboo could make such a soft fabric.

great info, thanks


amy jane profile image

amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut Author

Thanks midnightbliss! It really is incredibly soft and comfortable!


Duchess OBlunt 7 years ago

This was very interesting and informative. I am finding it very interesting some of the Hubs here.

I never gave this much thought, but I certainly will in the future.

Thanks for sharing such great ideas.


amy jane profile image

amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut Author

You are welcome, Duchess! Glad to hear this gave you something to consider next time you go shopping! :)


ghosht profile image

ghosht 7 years ago from Bangalore

Very nice article. So good to know about people who are so careful about environment.Please share your knowledge of diffrent ecofriendly fabrics more often.


amy jane profile image

amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut Author

Thanks ghosht! I really have a passion for eco-friendly clothing, particularly bamboo fabric. I will share more soon! :)


Randy 6 years ago

If you're looking for a place to find eco-friendly clthing retailers, you can find a list at http://www.ecofriendlysites.org/Apparel/


skgrao profile image

skgrao 6 years ago from Bangalore City - INDIA.

Do you know how Bamboo fiber is made,converted in to yarn and made in to fabric.

If all the people start using Bamboo fabric how many Bamboo Trees will be cut,what is the time required to grow a Bamboo tree and a cotton ball in a given area which is more economical.To converts Bamboo to fiber too much of water is needed,to make the same quantity of cotton fiber no water is required.Save Water.Let go Bamboo.

Make a Bamboo Hut and a Bamboo door stay cool and let cotton grow.

Look for Green Label Logo - Authority on Eco Friendly - it is EU Standard.


amy jane profile image

amy jane 5 years ago from Connecticut Author

Thanks for the tip Randy!

Skgrao, bamboo grows incredibly fast and can "grow back" within a year. Far more water is needed to grow and process cotton, not to mention the massive amount of pollution it creates from the pesticides used in farming and chemicals fro processing. Bamboo is clearly the better, greener choice.


realfree profile image

realfree 5 years ago from Indonesia

I like your article.

Fantastic.

Please visit my blog:

http://globalgreenview.blogspot.com

It's about stop global warming campaign. Let's join now


fjohn profile image

fjohn 4 years ago from india

good article.. everyone should be aware of this. great.

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