Photo by Scott Butler
4 min read
It can be a hard task to not only start, but to stick to, curating our wardrobe that fulfils both an aesthetic and ethically-conscious presence. It is nevertheless possible to shift to a more sustainable lifestyle while looking great - you just have to find the right balance for your personal style. Whether you’re someone who wants a complete switch-up of your wardrobe, or someone who is trying to gradually reduce your carbon footprint one garment at a time, take the time to appreciate yourself for taking the first step towards practicing sustainability through fashion. Here are four tips from Revival to start your journey.
1. The wear test
The Wear Test is popular amongst those who want to adopt a more minimalist approach. Livia Firth, the founder of Eco Age, a company that certifies brands for their level of sustainability, came up with one of the most ubiquitous campaigns in the fashion community. The #30Wears Campaign poses a challenge to those who have an overwhelming amount of clothing sitting in their closets. It encourages them to start shopping smart, keeping clothing longevity in mind.
How do you shop smartly? According to Firth, if you aren’t picking out that hot pink ribbed bralet at least 30 times a year, you don’t need it. Essentially, if you’re shopping and eyeing an item, consider if you’ll be wearing that piece at least 30 times a year. If not, don’t buy it.
Keep this challenge in mind the next time you’re shopping. You don’t have to stick to the number 30 - give yourself a manageable number and stick to it. If you’re certain that you won’t wear an item for that number of times, put it back on the rack.
2. The hanger switch
The Hanger Switch is another genius concept that we love at Revival. Similar to the #30Wears Campaign, this challenge is for those who are reluctant to get rid of things, especially on the spot. If you have to ‘put it aside’ when deciding whether to keep or donate, this could be the challenge for you.
To start, switch your hangers to face backwards. For every piece that you wear (ie. take off the hanger), switch that hanger back to its regular way. After a year, inspect the clothes on the hangers that are still facing backwards. You know what to do.
3. Research sustainable brands
Start researching sustainable brands and products. There are plenty of brands that operate sustainably and consciously without compromising on style. For example, us at Revival! We pride ourselves on being both fashionable yet environmentally conscious.
Many people have the misconception that sustainability-focused brands can’t achieve the same aesthetic as their favourite fast fashion and/or high fashion brands. However, we do see more bold and stylish pieces coming out of the sustainable fashion sector, producing beautiful clothes through ethical products and supply chains.
Another concern many people have is the price point of sustainable clothing. It is true that some brands do have higher price points than high street pricing, but it is economically more sustainable in the long run. Sustainable clothing is often of better quality, made by fairly paid garment workers and when you shop sustainably, you’re shopping for longevity. Such pieces are more likely to last longer than those from fast fashion brands and hence saving you money in the long run.
4. Take care of your clothes
Taking proper care of your clothes is key to keeping them fresh and long-lasting. This could mean washing your clothes less, or using more delicate washing products. Check out our guide on how to lengthen the lifetime of your jeans.
According to the Energy Saving Trust, doing laundry accounts for up to 80% of a garment’s environmental impact. If you are washing your clothes less, you are actively reducing your energy usage and impact on the environment.
There are also a plethora of other ways to maintain your wardrobe without succumbing to using high energy through washing. Products like fabric sprays and stain-removing pens are useful for keeping your pieces smelling great and looking new. You can also aim to maximise the number of times you wear an item before washing it; ie. wearing your jeans at least 3-5 times before throwing them in the machine.
Incorporating these small changes into your daily life can really make a difference. Whether you decide to start shopping with the #30Wear challenge in mind, choose to switch your hangers around, buy from sustainable brands like Revival, or pay closer attention to how you’re treating your clothes, you are sure to make a positive change.
Written by Karysma Hicks.