Sustainability has become a buzzword, and while that’s generally a good thing for both the planet and the conscientious shopper, it also means that the definition of sustainable can vary pretty significantly from one brand to another. There’s no universal standard for what qualifies as sustainable, and that means that you’ll have to do a little more research to make sure that the bands you use are really sustainable. That’s as true for kids clothing as it is for any other garment. Here are the major factors you should look for when shopping for sustainable clothing for your kids.
The most obvious thing you should look for in terms of ecological sustainability is what fabrics are used. That can mean looking for natural fibers like linen or wool, but you may want to consider looking at clothes made from recycled materials. That can offset the ecological impact of your clothing even more. Just scrutinize each brand closely, as the percentage of fabric that’s recycled can vary from company to company.
It can be easy to forget how much stuff goes into delivering a product to your door - from shipping boxes to zippers to buttons. Any one of these can throw off the sustainability of clothing in a serious way, and that’s why it’s important to compare different brands. Most companies that are reasonably committed to sustainability are going to make sure that all of their products are chosen strategically, so as to minimize their impact on the greater world. And never assume. A company that’s willing to go the extra effort is going to be front and center about it.
Kids know how to wear out some clothes. And the more often you have to replace the clothes your kids wear, the more stress you’re putting on the supply chains. The most sustainable clothing, in other words, is the clothing that you never have to replace. And while we still haven’t found a truly self-repairing fabric yet, durability should definitely be a factor into your consideration. There are two main outlets you can use to determine how durable your clothing is going to be - customer reviews and the actual products used in their construction. Opting for a more durable choice will increase the possibility that an article of clothing will last until the next growth spurt, and maybe even find a second life as a hand-me-down.
Fair (But Not Suspiciously Cheap) Pricing
You don’t always get what you pay for, but you should always be suspicious of clothing that offers you more than anyone else. If allegedly sustainable clothing is delivered at a price well below the traditional market value, that price had to be cut somewhere. And while low price doesn’t always denote something shady, there’s a decent chance that these low-cost sustainable clothing brands are cutting corners somewhere important - like in the quality of their materials or the pay rates of their workers.
That’s not to say that good deals are anathema to the sustainable clothing market. It just means that you’ll want to look closely to understand exactly what a given brand is delivering. As far as children’s clothes are concerned, a brand like Mon Coeur is balanced in terms of pricing and transparent about every important vector in their supply chain. There are a lot of points of intersection when it comes to legitimately sustainable kid’s clothing, so it’s important to determine the list of points that really matter to you and use those factors to determine what brands of sustainable clothing you want to use.