worn. x blanc.
It's no secret that fashion is one of the world's most polluting industries. The Ellen McArthur Foundation uncovered that the fashion industry is responsible for 10% of annual global carbon emissions, more than all international flights and maritime shipping combined.
Aftercare plays a key role in the transition to a more circular fashion industry and this is why we have teamed up with BLANC - to help you care for your clothes and give them the long life they deserve. As the country's leading aftercare specialist, it's fair to say they know a thing or two about how to care for clothes, and have shared their best tips to help you lower your overall impact on the planet and eco up your laundry routine.
Why care about aftercare?
What you can do to reduce your fashion footprint
1. Buy less, choose well.
To start, it is important to remember that the most sustainable fashion garment is what we already have hanging in our wardrobes. Doing our best to shop for classics and avoid trend-based pieces pay dividends in the long run! When shopping, ask yourself 'how many times will i wear this?' and if it's under 30, it's probably worth avoiding. Working out a cost-per-wear is also a great way to know if something was worth the investment. Try building a capsule wardrobe of timeless, quality items that you wont get bored of and will last you a lifetime: great fitting jeans, a timeless bag, a crisp white short...
Another option to shop consciously is to buy pre-loved fashion form second-hand stores! Far from the old fashioned dusty cliché, pre-owned fashion stores are trendier tan ever and great for the planet!
2. Wash less and wash cold.
Washing at 30°C or 40°C (often lower than stated on the care label) can help you save a lot of energy. Not to mention that it will make your clothes last longer as high temperatures are not good friends with textile fibres and wear them out. As for the drying, skip the tumble dryer and favour line drying: it will again save some energy and eliminate the heat and friction happening in the dryer which significantly reduces the clothes lifespan.
3. Detergent matters: check your labels.
Just like for the food we eat, checking labels for cosmetics and cleaning products that are in contact with our skin is essential. Luckily most brands - BLANC included - believe that washing your clothes shouldn't cost the earth and their are many eco-friendly, non-toxic detergents on the market that work as good, if not better, as the conventional ones. The Tangent GC Delicate Detergent is organic and fossil-free and treats the cell structure of natural fabrics gently. For supersensitive skins try Bio D's Fabric Conditioner, which leaves clothes soft, static-free and delicately fragranced and is perfectly suitable for sensitive skins.
4. Say STOP to microplastics.
Synthetic clothes release half a million tonnes of microfibres into the ocean every year, equivalent to more than 50 billion plastic bottles. Thos tiny microfibres are released for each clothes wash and go down our drains to eventually end up in our oceans and waterways. Just like any other type of plastic, they do not dissolve or biodegrade and because they are extremely tiny, they easily pass through water filtration systems. To prevent this, avoid buying synthetic materials when possible and invest in a Guppy Friend Washing Bag to filter out microfibres that shed from our clothes when washing. It will not only help to stop microplatsic pollution but also protects and prolongs the life of your clothes.
5. Make the switch to eco dry cleaning.
One thing to know about traditional dry cleaning is that is it neither dry nor clean: it consists of soaking clothes in a petroleum-based solvent called Perchloroethylene ('PERC"), which is then evaporated at very high temperatures. PERC is highly toxic for health and the environment and it accounts for 80%-85% of all dry cleaning fluids used by conventional dry cleaners to clean garments, despite being a probable human carcinogen and being banned in many countries already.
So for the clothes you have that require a professional clean, look for a professional wet cleaner. Based on biodegradable detergents and pure water, wet cleaning does not require the use of toxic solvents to be highly effective - rather the use of very sophisticated machines, calibrated to be just the right amount of gentle on fibres and tough stains. It's perfect on everything from your delicates to your work shirts and even suitable for items with a 'dry clean only' care label.
6. Alter, mend, repair!
At BLANC, we are strong believers that clothes worth wearing are worth repairing. If we simply doubles the amount of time we kept our clothes for, we would cut our fashion emissions by 44%! So if something you used to love doesn't fit quite right anymore or has a rip or tear - don't throw it away! Look at fixing or altering instead. You can DIY, or if you prefer to opt for a professional service, we offer alterations & repair at BLANC. It is a great way to extend the life of your favourite items and fall back in love with clothes you haven't worn in a while!
We hope this has inspired you to make your clothes last and love your wardrobe for longer! For some more specific garment care advice, you can take a look at our blog.