In our modern world, brands and consumers alike have decisively recognised the importance of sustainable practices in the fashion and textile industries. Acknowledging the negative impact that fast fashion and overproduction of clothes carry, fashion industry practitioners are now prioritising eco design and “green fashion” over all, ultimately raising customers’ awareness of just how eco-friendly their clothes is. Since choosing eco-conscious textiles can be challenging, we have chosen our picks for the most sustainable fabrics that you can find in the fashion market today.
Champion of sustainable fashion and a great alternative to synthetic fabrics, wool is one the most natural and eco-friendly fabrics to exist today. Collected mostly from sheep, llamas, and goats, wool is a completely biodegradable and recyclable material that leaves little carbon footprint during its production process, generally requiring very little energy. Apart from representing a thoroughly eco-conscious choice, the quality of wool also makes it one of the most pleasant materials to wear: an extremely breathable fabric, wool absorbs and releases moisture without stretching itself out overtime.
Despite being one of the oldest fabrics that is almost 34 000 years old, in 2021 linen still retains its sustainable and altogether fashionable qualities. Produced from flax plants, linen’s production is water saving (consuming only 6.4 litres of water as opposed to 2,700 for cotton) and cost effective – after extracting linen, flax plants are then used to produce flax seeds and linseed oil. Linen’s breathability and vitality makes it a perfect material for summer clothes that you can then re-purpose and re-make into a tablecloth, tea towel, or even curtains.
3. ORGANIC COTTON
Non-organic cotton has always had a reputation for being the least sustainable and eco-friendly fabric out there: in addition to exhausting water resources, production of non-organic cotton usually includes pesticides, a dangerous substance that harms nature as well as human and insect lives. Organic cotton then became an eco-friendly response to “normal” cotton – its production uses almost 91% less water than regular cotton and avoids pesticides by all means. Since organic cotton is naturally produced and rain-fed, it easily biodegrades in circa five months, while also keeping the soil healthy and chemical-free.