As a textile recycling company, we at USAgain often think about the environmental impact in terms of every T-shirt produced. This is because T-shirts are a simple item of clothing and a staple of most everyone’s wardrobe. Although we often use a T-shirt as an example, we pay close attention to the environmental impact of all garments and textiles, including winter wear.
If your winter gear is made from cotton, its environmental impact is similar to a T-shirt’s but on a larger scale because a winter coat requires much more fabric than a T-shirt.
Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case, as winter wear is often produced with synthetic materials like polyester. Like cotton, polyester production emits large amounts of CO2. What makes polyester worse is the other chemicals and compounds involved in its production: hydrogen chloride, volatile monomers and nitrous oxide, which entraps 310 times more heat than carbon dioxide, making it a significant contributing factor to global warming.
Finding a sustainable alternative to winter wear produced with harmful synthetic materials is a good way to start if you’re looking to green your winter. Now, it’s important to note that sustainable winter wear isn’t as easy to find or as affordable as organic T-shirts and jeans, but they can still be found. Here are a few of our favorite winter items produced with sustainability in mind.
Winter Coats for Women
Mother Nature Network’s Starre Vartan has compiled a nice list of eco-friendly coats for women. The list has items produced from surplus materials that would’ve otherwise been landfilled, as well as recycled materials, organic cotton and wool.
Winter Coats for Men
Women aren’t the only ones who can stay warm with an eco-friendly coat. Inhabitat has a useful list of winter coats for men, ranging from high-end, business-style coats to casually styled ones. While most of these items are a bit pricy, it’s worth noting that these items are built to last several winters.
Winter hats are among the least expensive cold weather items and most necessary, as we’ve all heard how important it is to keep your head warm. This hat from Eco Promos Online is priced at just over $10 and comes in over 50 colors, making it a versatile, inexpensive choice for keeping warm with sustainability in mind.
Sustainable winter wear may be harder to find than other items, but if consumers continue to demand more eco-friendly items, the market will respond by increasing availability and lowering price. Our advice is to jump on the sustainable winter wear bandwagon now and make your winter a little greener.