As someone who has always cared about my footprint on the environment, it took me years to figure out how my shopping habits can make an environmental impact. Now, as a fitness professional and workout fanatic who goes through a lot of activewear, I’ve learned how to shop for sustainable activewear.
The following are some tips that will significantly cut down on your carbon footprint. Keep in mind that not all of these tips work for everyone. However, if you can implement one or two from the list then you’ll make a difference.
The Environmental Impact of Activewear
First, it’s important to understand how activewear affects the environment. Most activewear is made of petroleum-based, plastic-derived fibers like nylon, spandex and acrylic. Additionally, the production of these materials alone requires fossil fuels which increase greenhouse emissions. Thus, if you’re someone who wears activewear, you’re likely contributing to global warming.
A 2018 report from Quantis found that apparel and footwear industries are responsible for eight percent of global greenhouse gas emissions.
Moreover, the rise of fast fashion, a 106 billion dollar industry -and growing – is exacerbating the problem. These quick-production and cheaply-made apparel lines make excessive use of natural resources – an excessive burden on the environment.
While we may not be perfect, we can all try to reduce environmental impact when it comes to buying activewear.
How to Shop for Sustainable Activewear
- Educate yourself. Know which companies are doing their part to make a difference and shop with them. For example, adidas’ goal is to make 90 percent of their products and activewear sustainable by 2025. This includes a commitment to using more recycled content and sustainable materials.
- Purchase from eco-friendly or sustainable activewear brands. These are companies that use organic cotton, plastic-free materials and recycled fabrics and packaging as well as ethical manufacturing practices.
- Shop second-hand. While a matter of personal preference, you can give clothing a second life.
- Spend more money on what lasts longer. When budgeting for activewear, consider investing in classic pieces that last longer. Reconsider buying trendy pieces that you will need to replace within 6 months to a year.
- Discard responsibly. Consider working with re-salers, especially those that up-cycle anything they don’t take or re-sell.
Read my other posts on how to live a more sustainable lifestyle:
This post is sponsored by adidas.