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The Pollution of Modern Fashion

There are microfibers in your clothing that will break down over time and contaminate the environment around you. When you look in your closet, you may just see your clothes sitting there innocently, but there is something sinister happening at a microlevel that you are not aware of. It happens with cheap fabrics most often, but  even high fashion clothes are sometimes going to cause pollution.

Many of us know about the kind of negative environmental effects of fast fashion and modern fashion trends that create disposable outfits that are not meant to be worn very often. We may know about how they hurt the earth, but are we aware of the damage they could be doing to us?

What to Know about Sustainable Fashion

Sustainable fashion is a hot topic these days, and that is for good reason. If we are not careful about how we support different fashion designers and businesses, we will contribute to environmental damage. Some fashion companies are not concerned about their effect on the environment, but they are all concerned about their public image. If you know that a company is being irresponsible, then you should do your duty to protect the environment and expose them.

What’s in Your Closet?

Kids talk about monsters in their closest, but the real monster may be the clothes that are placed on hangers in there and sitting in shoeboxes on the floor. These items could be shedding microfibers into the environment, causing damage to you, your pets, and the surrounding environment. What’s so bad about microfibers?  

The biggest issue is that they do not degrade naturally. They won’t ever become a part of the environment, and that’s because they are made of plastic. These little fibers can get into your airways and your digestive system. You can ingest them and breathe them in without ever noticing them. Your body may expel them in time, or they can build up inside you and your pets and cause damage. That sounds pretty scary, right? We should be scared about the effect these small fibers are having on our health and on the environment.

Emma with Imagine experts says that microfibers are tough to clean up, but a thorough and deep cleaning of the home can often remove most of them. If you have switched over to sustainable fashion recently, then there could still be microfibers in your home that you really don’t want there. Professional cleaning could be a great way to get rid of them and make your home a safer place.

Cleaning with the Earth in Mind

Do you try to conserve water when you are taking showers and doing laundry, making every effort to waste as little water as you can and combine loads of laundry? Yet even with that environmentally conscious mindset, you can still hurt the earth with the way you wash your clothes. Some clothing products are made with toxic dyes that look vibrant and colorful but are dangerous to the environment. When you wash them, especially if you wash them in a way they are not designed to be washed, you can cause the colors to bleed off. Those dyes can then get into the drains and eventually into the water supply, affecting humans, animals, and the surrounding environment.

You have to be careful first of all with what kind of clothing you buy and what kind of dyes are used. Secondly, you have to be careful about how you wash the clothes and how sensitive the dyes may be to certain kinds of washing cycles. Often, cold water cycles are safer for preserving colors and keeping dyes from running off compared to hot water washing cycles.

Time to Say Goodbye

Do you toss out unsustainable clothes that would harm the environment or do something else with them? Remember that many of these will not break down naturally in the environment, so it may be safer to put them in storage and hold onto them than make them end up in a landfill somewhere. If you don’t want them in your home anymore, you can gift them to friends or take them to a secondhand shop.

Once non-sustainable fashion is purchased, there is little that can be done with it other than for someone to keep wearing it. If you regret your decision to buy clothing that isn’t good for the environment, then keep that in mind the next time you go clothes shopping. Do your research to ensure that you are supporting sustainable fashion and environmentally conscious fashion companies. You can do your part little by little to reverse the trends and protect the environment.

It may seem like your small buying decisions cannot make much of a difference, but you can have a bigger impact than just on the clothes you buy. You can also tell your friends about your decision and what you have learned about shopping sustainably and how the fashion industry hurts the environment. Word of mouth is a powerful tool that will have a widespread impact. You can be affecting more than your immediate area by getting the word out and being an ambassador for eco-friendly clothing shopping.   

If you convince just one friend to change their buying habits and they convince one friend to do the same, the effort can spread. At that rate, if one new person is reached each month by each person, the result can be phenomenal. You will have a dozen people reaching a dozen more people the following year, and that multiplies exponentially from there. In a few years, the result can be awe-inspiring, just by taking the time to spread the word about clothing pollution and taking a stand to change how you shop for clothes.

Not all modern fashion is harmful for the environment, and not all clothing manufacturers are creating products with toxic dyes and microfibers, and it will take people who care to make the difference and get more companies to change their habits.

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