Fast fashion is out! Sustainable fashion is in!
We get the appeal of shopping from trendy clothing shops. But it's equally crucial to understand the downside of fast fashion, which harms the environment through practices like using animal materials and producing excess waste, among others.
To combat this alarming trend, certain fashion brands have made conscious efforts to revamp the way they produce and distribute clothes. One of which is Baleaf. Its own sustainability line gives its take on responsible production from inception to creating its own fabrics, dyeing, manufacturing, packaging, distribution, and consumption.
The Awful Truth About Fast Fashion
Fast fashion swiftly produces inexpensive, trendy clothing inspired by runways and celebrities to meet immediate consumer demands. This cycle fosters overconsumption and environmental pollution in the world.
It harms animals.
Fast fashion damages ecosystems with toxic dyes and microfibers, and it poses a threat to animal welfare when using materials like leather, fur, and wool in fashion.
It causes water pollution and extreme water consumption.
Textile factories frequently release wastewater, which contains harmful toxins into rivers and lakes. This, in turn, impacts people and aquatic life.
The use of fertilizers in cotton production not only contaminates water sources but also poses risks to people, animals, plants, farmers, and consumers.
When washing synthetic fiber clothes, microfibers are released into the ocean, becoming part of the food chain and constituting 85% of human-made debris on shorelines.
It creates plastic pollution.
The fashion industry adds to global water pollution through toxic waste from synthetic garment factories. Synthetic clothing production, favoring inexpensive polyester, contributes 35% of the world's microplastic waste. The production of polyester releases large amounts of plastic, leading to toxic chemical pollution in marine environments and potential harm to birds and mammals in the food chain.
It piles up in landfills.
The affordability of clothing and changing trends drive excessive consumption. This leads to low-quality garments ending up in landfills, with many people discarding clothing instead of donating, recycling, or upcycling.
Material waste from clothing production is also a concern. Approximately 57% of discarded clothing fills landfills, and incineration releases toxins and gases, posing environmental and health risks, despite filtration efforts. The sad reality is that less than one percent of clothing is recycled.
It contributes to climate change.
The fashion industry's tree-cutting for wood pulp and its high carbon dioxide emissions, driven by polyester production and plastic use, pose significant environmental threats.
How Baleaf Sustainable Combats Fast Fashion
Baleaf is a sustainable brand that has been committed to green and sustainable production since 2014, using eco-friendly and renewable materials to reduce its environmental impact.
We employ slow fashion.
Slow fashion is an approach that values people, the environment, and animals by considering the entire supply chain and focusing on quality in the design and production of clothing.
It shifts from quantity to quality in both production and consumption to avoid constant growth and accumulation. This approach respects the environment with low-waste processes, provides fair wages and healthy conditions for workers, avoids unsold inventory by producing in small batches or on a pre-order basis, and simplifies the supply chain by using local materials and labor whenever possible.
Baleaf invests in a circular economy, offering eco-friendly sportswear, using biodegradable packaging, and green energy for transportation, while actively participating in community conservation efforts.
We are GRS-certified.
Baleaf is a sustainable brand. It proudly adheres to GRS standards and bears its certification.
The Global Recycled Standard (GRS) is a voluntary standard for tracking recycled material in products, applying to the entire supply chain. It covers the processing, manufacturing, packaging, labeling, and distribution of products with at least 20% recycled material, and it sets requirements for third-party certification and responsible practices. The GRS helps companies verify recycled content and promote responsible social, environmental, and chemical practices.
Our GRS certification assures our commitment to honest materials and a circular economy, reducing waste by repurposing it into new products.
We use recycled nylon and polyester in the creation of our activewear.
As part of our desire to lessen plastic waste and pollution, 75% of our recycled nylon is from fishing nets and 90% of our recycled polyester is from plastic bottles. Moreover, we have our own dyeing and fabric factories, so all of the production is in one compound.
Recycled materials reduce energy, water, and dye usage by repurposing processed products, offsetting the need for new material production.
Recycled nylon is obtained from waste like fishing nets, contributing to ocean cleanup and conserving energy compared to new production. The recycling process typically includes hydrolysis, which breaks down the fabric's structure with water and chemicals, rebuilding it into recycled nylon.
Recycled nylon offers the advantage of indefinite recycling, making it a more circular option than recycled polyester, and its use can notably cut CO2 emissions compared to virgin nylon.
Recycled polyester, or rPET, comes from plastic bottles, offering a soft yet durable fabric for clothing and other items. The production involves shredding the polymer into pieces, converting them to pellets, melting them, and spinning them into new yarn.
We use biodegradable packaging.
The packaging of a sustainable clothing line should be as friendly as the clothes themselves.
Our new packaging is made from recycled nylon and recycled polyester that degrades within three years and features a reusable handle. While the cost of producing one may have doubled, we think that it's all worth it for a simpler and sustainable approach.
We go beyond activewear.
While Baleaf is, indeed, a sportswear brand, we believe that clothes should be multifunctional. By doing so, we can declutter our closets by having items that can be worn at several transitions throughout the day. And further down the line, lessen consumption.
Multifunctional fashion garments are adaptable to various situations and weather, featuring different characteristics across body areas for varied functions. The multifunctional design engages wearers, enhancing clothing options and extending the garment's lifespan, serving as a potential solution to balance the demands of a fast fashion market and environmental concerns.
Our women's sustainable line and men's sustainable line provide a diverse lineup of activewear that can be worn for a variety of purposes, from working out to running an errand, dining out, traveling, or simply lounging around. Each piece is versatile with the promise of durability and style.
#wemovetogether for the Change
Clothing offers an accessible way to create change by educating ourselves, raising awareness about the clothes we wear, and their impact on people and the planet, and making sustainable choices when buying.