Why it is worth to spending a bit more on your yoga pantsJuliette Sanders
Oh dear, sustainable clothing. Very delicate subject because if you think you do good, you probably might not. Well, not as good as you thought.
The clothing industry is leaving the second largest footprint on earth, after the meat and dairy-industry. Even if you’d buy eco-wear only, you’d be a big spender. Because. For example. Cotton needs land and water. A regular cotton t-shirt on average uses 2000 litre of water and travels the entire world. For regular cotton a lot of pesticides are being used which are sickening the cotton pickers and the land and eventually the water. So you go eco. But then even more water and land is wasted. If everyone would only wear eco cotton (or any other natural fabric), there would be no more land for food to grow. And water would all be wasted on clothing.
One of the alternatives are manmade fibres, the nylons. We use these at Tame The Bull, also because we need them for our sweaty activities. Not many land and water needed which is a very big plus, but the fibres are industrially made from oil and even though that standards are super high, the industry leaves a footprint. Also, downside of nylons is that they might leave super tiny micro fibres of plastic in the water when washed.
Nylon is not bio-degradable. Cotton and other natural fibres are, but only when composted which is not the standard yet. So like nylons, they help in piling up the clothing waste.
Very popular in yoga land are the pants from recycled polyester. The plus is that it uses existing polyester/plastic. The minus is that the recycling industry is not very known (so might not be very sustainable) and that the fibres of recycled polyester are larger. Meaning that larger micro fibres end up in the food chain. Recycled nylons cannot be recycled again.
So. Yes. You may sigh. Under the line, if you’d count all plusses and minuses, it doesn’t really matter if you’d wear (eco)cotton, bamboo, nylon or recycled polyester. We mean, it does, but not huge enough to truly make a difference. All fabrics have their con’s and their pro’s and end up more or less equal on the footprint scale.
What does make a difference is the amount of garments that you buy and how these garments are being produced. Do you buy 3 cheap pieces of shit, produced under lousy circumstances, or one more expensive high quality item that lasts equally long as the 3 all together?
We’re not pretending to change the world into a better place by producing durable yoga wear. But we do try to do it the best way we can. Which is why we create high quality garments in EU certified factories in Portugal. So we know that workers are treated cool, that EU regulations for industry apply, that we cut down on so called clothing miles and that your yoga pants last long.
If you have any tips and tricks on how to improve even more, we’d love to hear from you.