Why you should buy second hand clothing

It’s a no brainer that fast fashion is bad. For the planet of course but also for the workers involved in this industry who get paid low wages, work extra long hours, are threatened physically and mentally and in some cases are minors.

While there’s definitely growing awareness on the impacts of the fashion and textile industry, the fast fashion model of consumption remains the predominant one across the globe which means that the environmental and social impacts it comes with are not slowing down anytime soon.

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So what do you do ? On the pyramid of building yourself  an eco friendly and ethical closet (which you can find here), you’ll notice that even before supporting brands with a purpose is the « buy vintage when possible » advice.  That’s because the environmental benefits of buying pre-loved clothes are pretty significant (on top of saving money and looking unique of course) !

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By buying clothes that belonged to someone else, you’re reducing both textile waste and over-production that are two of the biggest environmental footprints of the fashion industry.

Indeed, when shopping pre-loved, you’re saving a perfectly wearable item from entering landfills (chances are, if you bought it, it’s because you can wear it) where it would have been burnt or buried, releasing significant quantities of methane into the atmosphere, and participating as such to global warming. A study showed that by extending the lifespan of a garment by only a couple of months could lead to a 5-10% reduction in each of the carbon, water and waste footprints. JUST A FEW MONTHS !

Moreover, producing clothing and especially cheap clothing entails needing new resources such as cotton, petrochemical fibers, colors etc that come with a ton of harmful impacts, including pesticides, toxic dyes and even gree house gases during the transport phase.

But by buying used clothing, you’re saving those additional resources that put an extra stress on the Earth’s soils, water and atmosphere. And that’s something considering it’s often said that the fashion industry is the second most polluting on Earth. No need for new when you got plenty of old ! In these pics for instance, nothing was obtained first hand (except the jeans). The bag belonged to my mum, the sweater and coat come from second hand shops and the shoes from an online second hand shop!

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Finally, you’re doing your small part to show the industry and consumers that there are alternatives to the now mainstream fashion business models that imply cheap clothing with a high social-environmental cost, and that’s perhaps the most important part.

Nowadays it’s still common to come across individuals who think that second hand fashion means smelly, unfashionable pieces that were thrifted in a grand-mother’s suitcase or at the back of a GoodWill shop that never sees a customer. By choosing to consume pre-loved, you’re showing them that this vision couldn’t be further from the truth and that there isn’t just one trendy fashion model.

Take the examples of those boots for instance. Scored in tip top shape on a french website that enables individuals who want to sell clothes to do so to interested shoppers, they cost me less than half of the original price and have been a huge hit to everyone around me. When asked where  I got them from, I explain not only the transaction but also the thinking process and the militant approach behind it. You can not begin to imagine the reaction of surprise from my friends and colleagues. I’d say that 9 out of 10 have asked me the links to these second hand websites I shop on and this, for me, is a huge victory and a proof that buying new, cheap clothing isn't the only way to look unique and satisfy your fashion cravings!

 

What are your thoughts? Do you often buy pre loved fashion? Would love to hear about your experience!

 

 

 

 

Eco Fashion Outfit of the Day #2 : Handmade craftsmanship and thrifted treasure

It's been a while since I've posted an outfit of the day entry (or any entry to be honest..) so here it is! I'm so glad to be sharing with you all a project that is dear to my heart. 

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The sweater is by a newly launched brand called Jose. Their story? They fell in love with the styles and craftsmanship of Bolivia and decided to partner up with over 30 skilled workers to produce those gorgeous sweaters in 7 different colors. The workers are paid a fair wage in a fair trade ideal and each sweater takes up to 9 hours to be made: a piece of art!

They're warm, cosy and fit incredibly well which is the motto of Jose: quality and style. 

They're currently in a crowdfunding stage, so should you want to support and get your own Jose, here's the link: http://bit.ly/thegreenmonky

The skirt is my latest crush, i'm wearing it pretty much all the time. I bought it for 15 euros in an Oxfam store (the equivalent of goodwill). BRAND NEW. It was probably a matter of wrong size but imagine my surprise when I found it in tip top shape! I actually found out  that it was from Zara's latest collection. As you know, I don't purchase fast fashion but when it's second hand, it's actually a great deal for the planet as well! 

Last but not least... the sunglasses! They're from an incredible eco brand based in Barcelona called Sea2See. Each pair is made in Italy from 100% recycled plastic from the Mediterranean sea! They gather the plastic in ports where partner fishermen bring it back and then transform it into beautiful and stylish sunglasses that are helping save the oceans! Completely in love. 

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Would love to know your thoughts! #SharingisCaring

Why The Reformation is one of the coolest "Eco" brands out there

« Being naked is the #1 most sustainable option. Reformation is #2 » is Reformation’s motto. And considering the brand’s sustainable practices, I might have to agree.

Forget the hippie tee shirts and long hemp skirts, say hi to silk maxi dresses with high slits and tee shirts with cool slogans such as « more trees less walls », Reformation has truly reinvented what sustainable fashion can and should look like. And guess what ? It’s a success as the brand has been opening new shops on a regular basis in the coolest cities on earth such as New York, London and San Francisco on top of their LA HQ (I’m still waiting for one in Paris….) and their styles are among the favoritesof Taylor Swift, Karlie Kloss or the bombshell Emily Ratajowski.

But what makes Reformation so special in the eyes of (conscious) fashionistas around the world ?

Reduced impacts at every stage

Every piece of the collection is designed and manufactured in Los Angeles (which is rare enough to be noted) but the brand doesn’t just avoid outsourcing, it uses only sustainable materials such as deadstock fabrics, Tencel, re purposed vintage clothing, certified viscose and others with about 50% of fabrics sourced in the US.

To calculate its impacts and provide each customer with an understandable and educational view of the impacts of the garment he/she is about to buy, Reformation developed the Ref Scale that calculates the carbon, water and waste footprints of all its products. How does it work ? Well the equation follows the lifecycle of the garment from the growing of textiles fibers and making fabric to moving it, manufacturing, packaging, shipping, garment care and even recycling. So below that trendy skirt, you’ll find all the water, CO2 emissions and other metrics you will save should you buy Reformation. I personally love it.

As a B corp, the brand is also highly committed to ethical labor conditions and applies its code of conduct to its supply chain and all the suppliers involved. This notably involves paying hourly workers more than the minimum wage and screening suppliers for negative social or environmental impacts. Just showing how a brand can be both ETHICAL & SUSTAINABLE.

But sustainability doesnt stop at the sourcing or manufacturing process, it appliers to office life and retailing. In their L.A office, all paper and most office suppliers are made of recycled waste and their packaging is plastic free and made of 100 recycled paper! Yey!

And if you think shipping your dress through the world isn't really eco friendly, you're right! But Reformation offsets all of its domestic shipping while n the process of setting up a carbon neutral shipping program for international shipping.    And if your purchase is made in one of their store, look around and try to spot the LED furniture, recycled insulation and other eco stuff that makes up Reformation stores!

Killer clothes that don't kill the Environment

In terms of style, the brand just embodies that cool Californian girl vibe that everybody who does NOT live in Cali wishes to look like. This includes flowy printed maxi skirts and dresses, perfect for sunbathing tanks and jeans that make your body look like you spend your days playing volleyball at Santa Monica.

Some of the items area bit pricey but not only do you pay for the style, you also get ethics, sustainability and quality, which makes it an even better investment.

AND, I have a tip for you guys ! They have a once in a year sale and it’s (usually) in august ! Meaning soon ! You have to subscribe to the mailing list to find out when it starts as they don’t advertise it on the website, but mostly because everything is sold so fast, so I wouldn’t advise waiting if you find the styles you like and your size is still available!

Ready to be a #refbabe ?

Eco Fashion Outfit of the Day #1 : Conscious Tee and Purple Skirt

While for a long time I had no idea what an "ootd" and even less a "fair ootd" was, here is my first ever eco outfit of the day including a 100% organic tee brand that spreads happiness, a vintage skirt bought years ago and vegan booties!

 

Guess I really became a blogger now right?

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