Why You Should Choose Ethical Clothing
Do you truly know where your sportswear has come from? Can you be sure that every person in the labour chain has been treated fairly? Are you aware of how much the production process has harmed the environment?
How does fast fashion harm the planet?
Fast fashion is a term that refers to cheap, basic clothing that is made in factories where workers are not given proper rights and out of fabric that harms the planet. If the price of your clothing seems too good to be true, it probably is, and someone somewhere down the line is paying the price. Bear this in mind the next time you buy ‘2 t-shirts for £7’ at ASDA or Primark. The rise of fast fashion has meant that more brands are cutting corners with their manufacture and it is harming not only the environment but people too.
There have been several textile factory disasters in recent years, such as the devastating collapse of the Rana Plaza textile factory in Bangladesh in April 2013. Only a few months prior, a fire at a textile factory in Dhaka, Bangladesh killed over 100 people and the year before a fire in a garment factory in Karachi, Pakistan killed 289 workers. This is why it’s important to know exactly where your clothes are coming from so that you can know the workers are being treated fairly and safely.
When it comes to the environment, fashion is causing an alarming amount of damage. According to the WWF, one cotton t-shirt can use up to 2,700 litres of water to make, and this rises to a staggering 11,000 litres for a pair of jeans. Greenhouse gas release is also alarming, with one ton of polyester contributing to an astonishing 10 kilos of CO2 emissions.
What can be done about it?
Thankfully, a demand for ethical clothes is now becoming more popular. Brands like Sundried create eco-friendly sportswear with many of their pieces made from recycled materials. Recycling is one of the best ways we can help to save the planet, especially as it can fill two needs with one deed. By using recycled plastic bottles to create activewear, Sundried are helping to clean up the environment and reduce the amount of plastic waste that pollutes our planet. It also means that they are not producing new materials and therefore are contributing substantially fewer CO2 emissions and using less water to create their garments.
At Sundried, every worker is treated fairly at every point of the labour chain. Their activewear is made in Portugal and Italy meaning they have a very small carbon footprint and they work together with the Low Carbon Innovation Fund to keep an eye on this. All of their workers are paid fair wages and work in good conditions.
It’s time for other brands to follow suit, and it’s also important that you as the consumer make conscious decisions to help, too.
What can I do?
- Make sure you know exactly where your sportswear is coming from. If it is made in Asia, track the chain and make sure it is not made in a sweatshop using slave labour.
- Try to buy garments made from recycled materials where possible. It’s becoming a lot more common for brands to use recycled materials now and so there should be plenty to choose from. If not, cotton produces fewer emissions than polyester.
- Seek out ethical brands. There are so many ethical brands out there now, with Sundried being the leader for activewear and sportswear. Do your research and feel assured that your purchase is leading to a brighter future.