Even if you do not agree with global warming, most people are willing to concede there is no harm in making an effort to live a more sustainable lifestyle. The problem is, the entire process is confusing! Eco-Friendly, Sustainable, Going Green - all of these phrases have become popular in recent years but their exact meaning is often vague. Especially when discussing fashion.
Photo courtesy of Rega Photography
The negative side to this confusion is many people just give up. They feel it is too hard to try to figure out what is and is not okay to wear and quit attempting to make eco-friendly choices when shopping.
The good news is, it doesn't have to be that hard! As with everything in life, the goal should be progress; not perfection. By checking labels (or online descriptions), you can easily work earth friendly pieces into your wardrobe without sacrificing style.
Let's take a look at some of the aspects that seem to have the most confusion for shoppers.
What is the difference between upcycling and recycling?
Recycling takes one object and breaks it down to create a material for another project. Like when plastic bottles are recycled into plastic bags.
Upcycling takes an object and gives it a new purpose without drastically changing the original form. Like when an old tire becomes a swing.
Both processes help the environment by reducing waste.
Do It Yourself and Handmade
In recent years, there has been an explosion of handmade artists offering their creations online and at local venues. Do It Yourself (DIY) projects are wildly successful for bloggers and Pinterest users. These help the environment by reducing reliance on factories and the pollution associated with them. Many also offer creative upcycling ideas.
Many Steampunk fans are well versed in the art of handmade, DIY projects; as their style was not available commercially until recent years. Photo courtesy of Gaudencio Garcinuño
In general, organic fabric is created with natural products that were not exposed to chemicals while growing. There is debate over which fabrics are best because some plants are better for the environment than others. (How's THAT for mind boggling?!)
Again, if you look at this from a perspective where every effort for improvement is better than none; you will see the particulars regarding the most earth friendly plant life can be left to the more advanced eco-warriors.
A few of the more popular natural materials include hemp, cotton, and bamboo.
An organic top and panties easily mix with cruelty free accessories to create a casual, eco-friendly casual style. You can shop this look here.
Cruelty Free and Vegan
This is another hot topic for people to debate - Is an item cruelty free if an animal did not die to create it? (Like silk and wool) Is the only viable option to choose goods that have no usage of animals? What about second hand pieces?
Again, just make an effort! If you normally live in a leather jacket, consider an immitation fabric alternative. If you must have the softness of fur, consider purchasing a vintage piece for retro style and no new animal involvement. Any opportunity to choose an alternative to animal products is a win for our furry friends.
As you can see, there are many ways you can Go Green with your next fashion purchase. Even if Earth Day is the only day of the year you consider making an eco-friendly purchase- that is still progress! You can find a collection of sustainable items offered on RebelsMarket here.
Do you try to make Earth Day every day? Leave your feedback in the comments section!