If you’ve been following my blog, you’ll recall a little over a year ago, I wrote some posts on plastic in our lives, and some ways I was trying to reduce my own contributions to the problem of the plastic plague. Why do I care? Mostly, I care because I don’t want the oceans ending up with more plastic than plankton. I like birds. I don’t like seeing birds (and other animals – especially turtles!) dying, starving and becoming poisoned from eating too much plastic.
Following on from my previous post on plastic in clothing, I decided to investigate my closet to find out how much plastic is hiding in plain sight.
I hoped for a majority natural fabrics like cotton. I distinctly dislike the way polyester feels on my skin and how it doesn’t breathe at all.
The results weren’t as bad as I was expecting overall, but there is definitely room for improvement! Here’s what I found in my everyday wardrobe…
- All of my “woolly” sweaters and winter hats are 100% acrylic.
- My nicer blouses for office jobs were an variety of mostly viscose, rayon and polyester with no cotton.
- Most of my t-shirts were 100% cotton which is great. There are a couple of odd rayon shirts in the mix, but I’ll take rayon over polyester since its a natural-synthetic blend.
- My jeans are 68% cotton, which is not too bad I suppose. Another pair of pants are 97% cotton and 3% elastane.
- My shorts are a win at 98% cotton/2% elastane. Not bad!
- Most of my dresses were polyester. The worst part of this are the tights that go along with them which are all 100% nylon, of course.
Following up from my previous post about the earth becoming a plastic planet, I’ve been thinking more about plastic in my life. Over the last couple of years, I have been striving to be healthier and eliminate certain toxins from my life, such as chemical cleaning products and air fresheners, beauty and personal care products and making more food homemade. Maybe the next logical step is striving for less plastic both in my home and on myself!
After learning about the plastic industry taking over our clothing and how it degrades in the washing machine only to wind up polluting our oceans, I decided to learn more about what I put on my body every single day.
And it is not only the plastic fibers polluting the ocean, but also the concern of what happens to all these articles of clothing when we are done with them? Because they are basically plastic, they will not biodegrade and will persist in the environment long after we’re gone. Perhaps one solution is to wear more natural fiber clothing…
So first, I ask the question: where does our clothing come from? Fabrics are made from one of two things: natural or synthetic fibers.
Recently, I finally got around to watching the 2009 documentary Plastic Planet by Werner Boote. I’ve been interested in learning more about how plastic is made from oil, the potential health dangers of all the plastic surrounding us not to mention the environmental repercussions. Sure enough, after watching it, I found a new article about how the earth is becoming a plastic planet.
I was both fascinated and horrified about how many plastic products are actually a part of my daily life! Not only the regular things you might think of, like kitchen utensils, ziploc bags and food containers, but also your clothing, nearly every food from the grocery store is packaged in plastic, cables and wiring, the refrigerator and there is probably plastic in the shower and the window frames. Everywhere I look, there is plastic and soon enough, I was driving my significant other crazy as I pointed out everything around us that was plastic!