Fashion lovers, I have some good news for you ;)

pexels-photo-547557.jpegWhen mainstream shops start offering a sustainability section for clothes, it becomes so much easier to combine style and sustainability! We need clothes to keep us warm, for sure. But we also use them to express ourselves! Having a wide variety of clothes to choose from might be a western luxury but many people, including myself, do feel like it’s important to really get to choose what you wear. Combining a wide range of choice with sustainability has however not really worked out that well. But now change has started happening!

Two or three years ago, I had to order clothes or shoes to Finland from for example France or the UK, if I wanted to buy anything marked as a sustainable brand. No more! The web shop Zalando now offers a “sustainable development” choice in the “filter by…” section. When you tick that button, all the page shows you is more sustainable than the market average. They have over 500 items of clothing in that section! I realised that if people always just automatically ticket that box, you would not even see and be tempted to buy anything that’s not marked as sustainable. With functions like that, it’s so easy to choose sustainable that you don’t have to be a major environmentalist to do it.

Obviously, buying more and more new things will never make the world more sustainable. But if you are buying new clothes anyways, switching to more sustainable brands and materials can make a huge difference globally.

My five favourite sustainable brands

  1. Filippa K (clothes)

  2. Veja (Sneakers)

  3. Bourgeois Boheme (shoes for work)

  4. Under the Same Sun (yoga wear)

  5. Monkee Genes (jeans)

 

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Eco Edit online shopping

Looking pretty or saving the planet? There can be a balance. Whereas I would prefer not to encourage anyone to consume more, I am also a realist. Most readers of this blog will buy consumer products such as clothes at some point.

68% of all Finnish Carbon footprints are directly a consequence of personal choices. My choice of consumption, and yours. Globally, this number is quite similar: around 70%. In Finland, about 25% of this goes to goods and services. Like clothes and travelling. It’s easy to complain about industry emissions but in fact, if all Finnish people stopped buying new clothes and flying, the impact on the national carbon footprint would be fantastic. The study I am talking about, estimated that it would be fully possible to reduce this type of consumption by a third!! They said the best way is to extend the lifespan of products.

So guys, buy quality, not quantity. Expanding the lifetime of products can either be done by expanding the lifetime of the product itself, or by it’s materials. I buy about 2 pieces of new clothing and probably one pair of new shoes per year. In 2017 I bought zero new shoes, I’m so proud of myself because I used to be a major shoefreak! It would of course be better to buy nothing, but sometimes even sustainability-freaks like me love treating ourselves. I just bought this swimming suit made from recycled yarn, expanding the lifetime of the oil-based material of polyester. The world is becoming a better place when even companies like Asos start using recycled materials for their clothes! I will have to wash it carefully so that it does not shred micro plastics into the ocean, but as long as I take good care of it and do not slide on rocks, it should be fine. Now we really have the option of choosing better, which means there is no good excuse to ever again buy a swimming suit that is not either the most durable thing you have ever seen, designed to last forever, or then made from recycled yarn.

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Source:

https://media.sitra.fi/2017/10/23144245/Consumption_choices_to_decrease_personal_carbon_footprints_of_Finns.pdf

 

Trendy, sustainable shoes for this spring

Hey guys! I wanted to share my two favourite shoe brands at the moment. Buying good shoes is quite important I think. Shoe’s are a consumer product which is very difficult to recycle. I don’t know any organisation that would recycle old and broken shoes, so they just go to landfill or end up being burned at a trash incinerator. Shoes are being thrown away at such a rate that getting good quality ones made from sustainable materials really makes sense.

If you already have a pair of nice spring shoes, please do not get another pair. But if you have already worn your shoes for several years and they are literally falling a part, have look at these two brands: Veja and Nae! Vejas shoes are sold at several web-shops, for example Zalando.

The black shoes at the bottom from Veja are made out of Tilapia-fish leather, how cool is that? Tilapia is also quite sustainable to eat if you compare to it to salmon, since it’s a Tilapia is a fish that eats only vegetarian food which means there’s less energy wasted in the food chain. The brown ones are vegan shoes, made from organic cotton. The velcro shoes are so cool but they’re made from cow-leather, and even if this particular leather is tanned with less chemicals than normally, I’m a bit unsure about the sustainability. Better than “normal high-chemical” leather at least!

And Nae is of course made of the all time favourite material Pineapple leather. Sustainable shopping is the absolutely easiest way to make a sustainability impact: you are not sacrificing anything but still you can contribute to making a difference. I’m considering buying the black Tilapia ones, I think they’re gorgeous. But I’ll have to keep considering for another couple of weeks, I want to buy shoes I can be happy wearing for the next 3-4 years!

New fashion web store: it’s so good and so sustainable!

Secco.fi, that’s the place to be!

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I’m a huge fan of high quality secondhand stores. 90% of all clothes I buy, are secondhand. Therefore, I was thrilled when two girls from my school started a secondhand fashion community online. They have only been up for a couple of weeks, but I’ve already bought my first piece of clothing with them! SECCO is based in Finland and the website is in Finnish, but who know’s if it will expand to other countries in the future?

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Perfect turtleneck sweater for Christmas times, bought from secco.fi

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It’s all super well organised, the shopping experience is just as smooth as when you order from any web store. The even better thing is that I can sleep well at night shopping fashion here, knowing that buying secondhand is always more sustainable than buying new clothes! I think this is really a smooth transition for those who haven’t bought secondhand before, but would like to give it a try.

If you want to sell something, it goes super smoothly too. Either, you can set up your own sellers page on the website or if you want to make it even easier, use SECCO:s sales service! You just put your clothes in their collection box located in central Helsinki or mail them everything, they do all the job and you get 60% of the revenue! Check out more details at secco.fi.

I cannot other than recommend, much easier than selling or buying via facebook pages!

 

 

Support sustainable fashion

People Tree is one of UK:s leading sustainable fashion companies. Their entire production chain is affected by their sustainability thinking. What I also love about them is that it’s all very transparent, the consumer gets to know who made their clothes.

I haven’t bought any clothes from them because their smallest size is a bit too big. I did order some clothes once but they didn’t fit. I still decided to give them 10 pounds for this project! Why don’t you donate too? If you think there’s any way you could have 10 pounds to spare for a more sustainable material and a more sustainable future, please support their crowdfunding!

Click here to support the crowdfund.

 

 

 

Pineapples into drinks and bags!

Piña Colada and Piñatex! How awesome is it when the byproduct of one of your favourite drinks can suddenly be turned into bags, shoes and accessories?

Not long ago, I argued that buying leather is not that bad as long as you use the products for a long time. Mostly, because I find poor-quality, plastic, fake-leather really unsustainable. If I advocate for a vegetarian diet, I should really stop buying leather. Anyone who has seen Cowspiracy get’s why it’s probably for the best to give up leather if there’s a good alternative. Although the documentary is quite exaggerated when it comes to e.g. the statistics they use, it has a valid point.

Piñatex is a newly developed textile that is simply awesome. It was all over the news about a year ago, but everyone should know about this awesome product. It’s durable. It’s biodegradable. It uses significantly less resources than leather production. And while I do think death is a part of life, it’s quite nice when no one has to die for your shoes. It’s made from pineapple leaves! The leaves are just a byproduct, we still get to keep the actual pineapples for Piña Coladas!

 

Like Pinatex on facebook or Instagram to see what all new purposes it’s used for! In need for new shoes? I think these Pineapple shoes from NAE look quite nice!

 

Kuvahaun tulos haulle NAE - Bare (black pinatex) - vegan sneakers

I found this particular model at an Australian web store which seems a bit excessive when it comes to shipping to, but it’s a good tip for all my friends in Australia! NAE:s shoes are made in Portugal and sell Pinatex winter shoes at their own web store right now. They also sell a more plain sneaker, but I personally really like the design with the zipper.

Rakin

 

The plain Pinatex Sneaker I quite like was found on Ebay too.

Bare

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apparently, men don’t get to be conscious

It seems to be very hard to find clothes labeled sustainable from mainstream brands if you are not a pregnant woman. I know it sounds like a weird thing to say. But so is H&M:s conscious collection. It’s weird because it is so limited. Have a look if you wish.

H&M have had a huge boast about its conscious collection, celebrities wearing the clothes and all… And what do we get? Well, first of all, men don’t get anything in this section. There is no conscious collection for men at all. I do hope H&M is wrong and that men do care about the sourcing of their clothes. Women do buy far more clothes than men (two to five times more) but it’s still interesting and sad how market segmentation identifies only a very small part of women as “conscious”.

Secondly, half of the women’s clothes are just for pregnant women. And considering a pregnancy lasts for just 9 months, my cynical mind can’t help but wonder if this is a trick by H&M, trying to hide that it’s “conscious” collection is actually really bad quality, lasting for less than a year? But that’s too cynical. The real reason is probably just that pregnant women want to avoid harmful chemicals in clothes. However, everyone should avoid those chemicals, if not for your own health then for the health of the people in the garment industry.

I actually found a nice top in the “conscious” section. Right now I’m thinking whether I make a bigger influence if  I buy the top or if I boycott the company? They say “the consumer is the king” so if anything will influence this company it should be everyone buying clothes. So if I do ever buy something from H&M, it will definitely be from the conscious collection. For both men and women, there are many small brands producing eco-clothes (my favourites are People Tree and Pure Waste). However, big brands such as H&M are able to make a huge difference because everyone already knows the brand and they can afford massive advertising.

66 pieces of clothes, in a selection of about (roughly estimated) 3000 pieces of clothing, are called labeled “conscious”. That means that they themselves regard the rest of the 2944 pieces of clothing as not conscious. That makes 98% of H&M is unconscious and therefore, unsustainable, by their own definition.

Do I really want to give even the smallest sum to a company that’s 98% unsustainable? Or do I want to give my money to the sustainable section, hoping that this would make them produce more sustainable clothes than 66 pieces (most of which are for pregnant women) in the future? Hard choices, I think I’ll have to contemplate a bit more about whether I even need the top. Or need is the wrong word, obviously, I don’t need it. I will contemplate whether it would make me happier and if so, how much happier?

After all, I prefer to buy second hand. I see it more as borrowing or renting clothes. I buy a piece of clothing, if I become tired of it I’ll just bring it back to the store and we are back where we started: no additional natural resources were required. I just love all the charity shops in London, I have to have someone take pictures to show you what I have found! But that will be in next post, hope to see you back here reading soon again!

Wearing a dress that matters

I’m back on the blog again after a couple weeks of super-studying and a weekend with a gala-style party! Most girls know the feeling of always wanting a new dress for a party…No matter how many dresses you have, new party, a wish for a new dress. That’s why I love changing and up-cycling old dresses! In the pictures I’m wearing my moms old dress, a dress that she got for her engagement party about 25 years ago. It was a formal dinner and I was required to wear a full-length dress, so I added a mermaid style hemline. The big shoulders are not very fashionable anymore so as you can see I made some changes there too…

My sewing machine broke down on the same day as the party so I actually had to sew a part by hand, panicking and sewing the dress still at the pre-party. i almost gave up in my hurry but my friends were so sweet and encouraged me to make the dress ready and wear it! They were right, it felt really good to wear a dress that matters. A dress with a long history. As I said many times, the more times you use stuff, the more sustainable! And who would not love feeling both pretty and sustainable?
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Does your peeling cream end up in our food?

Micro-plastics or micro-beads, have you ever heard of them? You might have heard of them but because it’s quite hard to actually see them, it is difficult to know where they can be found. They are tiny beads of plastic that can be found in your cosmetic products like soap, toothpaste or peeling creams.

At the bottom of this page you can watch a really good, simple video that explains the whole problem of these micro-beads. They are small enough to pass through water-treatment plants and will most likely end up in the sea and lakes. Small seacreatures might then eat the plastic thinking it’s food. Bigger fish survive on eating plankton and small fish that has fed on plastic, which means that the plastic accumulates in their bodies. I just wrote about me eating quite a lot of fish, but it becomes really unhealthy if your peeling cream ends up in my fish.

Reading through the all the contents on every product can be exhausting but I will soon tell you what to look for anyways. Although,for me the easiest way to avoid microbeads has been to buy mostly eco-comethics. For example my toothpaste and face-wash both comes from eco-brands, Dr. Hauschka and Sante are to brands to be recommended. All my shampoos, conditioners and shower-soaps are from Lush where they also don’t use any micro-plastics in their cosmetics.

Check the products for contents like Microspheres,Micro-beads, Balls, Beads or  Microcrystals. Also if anything contains something that says “PE” it means it contains plastic. Avoid these products, because I don’t want your peeling cream in my food! Here is a link to a list of products containing micro-beads, I found a few products I used before on it. Scroll down the document and you will find a shockingly many products. Even the Body Shop who “is committed to protecting the planet” has a few products containing plastic! Even if the list is not exhaustive, there are shampoos, eye-shadows, shower-gels, foundations, hand-cremes and deodorants on that list, just to mention a few.

A further question is of course why micro-beads are allowed in the first place… I’m sure they will be forbidden in a few years, the legislation process is just way too slow. If you find it hard to believe that microbeads should really be forbidden, here’s some scientific proof. But until it’s actually forbidden, you can check your cosmetics yourself!

A skirt made from waste

Hi everyone! Unfortunately it’s been a while since my last update but here I am again. I have been busy working and enjoying the nice weather now that summer finally arrived to the Nordic countries!

Warm weather meant I finally had the chance to wear a skirt. I really wanted a simple black skirt, but as I have decided not to buy from any “fast fashion” stores, finding one started to take too long. After looking through a few second hand stores I decided to make a skirt myself.

Then I just needed to find an ethically produced fabric. Have you heard of a clothing brand called Pure Waste? They make mostly hoodies and T-shirts from fabric that’s made from textile waste. Cotton plantations are rarely very friendly to the environment, so taking care of every tiny piece of fabric and making it into new fabric is brilliant. They don’t sell skirts at the moment but I managed to buy just the Pure Waste-fabric from their concept store in Helsinki. Check out their website here!

This is what the skirt ended up looking like, and the top is of course bought second hand 😉_20150811_085825