80% of women want to make their clothes last longer. This is according to a survey I published recently.
It makes so much sense when we’ve invested money in clothes to get the best return possible. How good does it feel to get value from our purchases? Personally, I get quite attached to my clothes and so it’s an emotional investment rather than just financial when I’m able to make my clothes last as long as possible.
If you don’t enjoy shopping and around 46% of women really hate shopping for clothes it’s a no brainer to make sure our clothes last as long as possible.
But how can we make our clothes last longer?
Stating the obvious, buying quality items in the first place that we love and will get a lot of wear from is the best approach. Clothes that are made from really good fabrics and is made well.
But we can do a lot to help our clothes last longer in the way we take care of them. This is not just good for our clothes but also the environment. Did you know that
30% of the carbon footprint in clothing comes from laundry.
Clothes last longer the less times they are washed. Before you wrinkle your nose in disgust this obvs does not apply to activewear and undies.
The more we wash our clothes colours will start to fade and any elastic (including elastane) in the garment will stretch. When we wash our clothes, we create friction between items in the washing machine. This means that the fibres start to break down.
In the last couple of years, I’ve made a conscious effort to reduce how often I wash clothes and so far, haven’t lost any friends!
So how can we make our clothes last longer and have a more environmentally friendly approach to our laundry?
Use a good quality detergent
Last year I swapped to Tru Earth – it ticks every box on the lack of harmful chemicals and being hypoallergenic.
It is also environmentally friendly. With no plastic – no bulky detergent bottles. This reduces the transportation carbon footprint by 94%!
The two packs in the image (A5 size envelopes) are 3 months’ worth of washing.
Give up fabric conditioner
Fabric conditioner coats clothes in a waxy layer. This means they become less able to absorb water and detergent. It also reduces the absorption and wicking properties of fabrics. This is why your gym wear develops that slightly unpleasant smell! Stop using fabric conditioner and make your clothes last longer
Invest In Wool Balls
If you do use a tumble dryer then invest in some wool dryer balls. amount of creasing and is supposed to reduce the drying time because the clothing is being bounced around more. The wool balls make the clothes feel as though they’ve been conditioned. You can even add a few drops of essential oil to the balls and your clothes will smell lovely!
Read The Care Labels
Wash at the right temperature and with like-minded fabrics. This is probably the one mistake I’ve made to just throw everything in the machine, load it up, stick it on and hope for the best! The care labels are there for a reason. Check them and you will find your clothes last longer.
Wash Dark Clothes Separately
Wash jeans and dark coloured trousers inside out. They will retain their colour for longer. Also do not wash dark clothes with light coloured items. This might sound like laundry 101 but I know how often I’ve said to myself ‘oh it won’t matter’ Another tip is to dye your jeans when they start to fade.
Reduce Microfibre Pollution
Use a product like Guppy Friend. The Guppy Friend is a bag that you put synthetics into and put this into the machine. The bag catches the micro plastics. You don’t see them as they are too small. The bag generally just looks as though it’s changing colour. Good for the environment and for your clothes as they don’t bounce around the machine so much.
Chemical Free Dry Cleaning
Now to dry cleaning. There are now more ‘eco-friendly’ ways to get your clothes ‘dry cleaned’ – before you simply book your clothes in check with your local cleaners and seek information online to find dry cleaners who use non-toxic products/wet cleaning and other more environmentally friendly approaches.
Do You Have Any More Ideas To Make Your Clothes Last Longer?
These tips should really help, but I’m sure you may have found other ways and I’d love to hear about them. Why not share them in the comments below?