• Nneji Akunne

What Does It Mean to Be "Green"? How Environmental Sustainability Plays A Role in Fashion

The modern world is shifting its focus towards being more environmentally conscious. Individuals are more aware of their day-to-day habits' effects on the world around them. From reducing our carbon footprint to cutting back on plastic usage, there are so many ways in which we can positively impact the planet. Initiatives to support sustainable practices and reduce environmental harm have become part of many individuals’ codes of conduct and principles for living a happy, fulfilled life. Regarding fashion, sustainability plays a vital role in the production process. Let’s take a closer look at what makes something “green” regarding fashion and why it matters so much.

What Does It Mean to Be “Green”?

Green is a term that’s often used when referring to sustainable practices. In essence, being green means taking steps to reduce the amount of pollution and waste you create. With fashion being such a huge industry, it’s no secret that it can significantly impact the environment. Whether it be the materials used to make clothing, the amount of water used to clean and dye fabrics, or the carbon emissions from transporting garments from one destination to another, the fashion industry has the potential to create a lot of waste. Therefore, it’s essential to be conscious of your fashion choices' impact on the environment.

How Is Sustainability Important in the Fashion Industry?

There are many ways in which the fashion industry can be harmful to the environment. Once you start looking into textile manufacturing practices, you’ll quickly realize that it takes a lot of energy and resources to create clothing. From harvesting crops that go into fabric production to transporting raw materials and finished products, the fashion industry uses a lot of energy. This can have a negative impact on the environment. Not to mention the release of harmful chemicals and pollutants into the air. So, how can we make fashion more sustainable? The most obvious solution is to reduce the amount of clothing we consume. It may sound counterintuitive, but consuming less clothing has a positive impact on the environment and saves you money. According to Statistic Brain, the average American spends a whopping $1,800 per year on clothing. So, why spend so much on clothing that is often cheaply made and ends up in the trash before long?

Green Manufacturing Practices

When it comes to manufacturing, it’s crucial to look for green labels that indicate responsible and sustainable practices. Some of the most common practices used in apparel manufacturing include spinning, knitting, weaving, and dying fabrics. Many of these practices, however, can be harmful to the environment. For example, spinning is one of the most common methods used to create and process fabrics for clothing. Spinning, unfortunately, uses a lot of energy and releases harmful chemicals into the air. Other green manufacturing practices include using recycled and organic materials. For example, manufacturers can use recycled plastic, reclaimed fibers from old clothing, and soybean-based dyes to create fabrics and garments. Furthermore, using organic materials in manufacturing is another excellent way to reduce the fashion industry’s harmful environmental impact.

Organic Materials in Fashion

There are many benefits associated with using organic fabrics in clothing. For example, many organic fabrics are more sustainable since they’re generally easier to grow than conventional crops used to create fabrics. Organic fabrics are also better for the environment, as they use less water and create less pollution. There are even some eco-friendly dyes that you can use to dye organic fabrics. Additionally, organic fabrics are free of harmful chemicals like pesticides. This makes them better for your health and safer for the environment. Some of the most popular organic materials in clothing include cotton, linen, hemp, and wool. It’s important to note that not all organic fabrics are created equal. This is why it’s important to research and select high-quality, eco-friendly materials when shopping for new clothing.


When shopping for new clothing, looking for sustainable options is essential. This is the best way to reduce the fashion industry’s harmful environmental impact. From using organic materials to minimizing your clothing waste, there are so many ways in which you can become more environmentally conscious. From the soil to the water, there are plenty of ways that the fashion industry negatively impacts the environment. Luckily, there are plenty of ways we can make our clothing more sustainable.

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