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Durable fashion - How to make your clothes last forever

Long-lasting fashion - 12 tips to make your clothes last as long as possible and stay beautiful

Looking for long lasting fashion tips? Then you've come to the right place! At a time when fashion trends seem to change on a weekly basis and many items of clothing are lacking in quality, it should come as no surprise to anyone that the world is suffering from increasing mountains of textile waste. However, by understanding how we can make clothes last as long as possible and extend their lifespan, we can counteract this problem in an environmentally friendly way.

In this article, I would therefore like to give you the most valuable tips to help you keep your clothes alive forever. You will also find out in advance why this is important for a conscious, sustainable lifestyle is important. Let's go!

Here you will find a brief overview of the advice:

  1. Value quality and timelessness
  2. Pay attention to the correct storage
  3. Reduce the number of wash cycles
  4. Pay attention to the care instructions
  5. Dry your clothes in the air
  6. Use a lint shaver
  7. Repair damaged clothes
  8. Rely on natural moth protection
  9. Keep spare parts in a specific place
  10. Keep stain sources at a distance
  11. Pass your clothes in case of disinterest
  12. Know yourself

Why should we wear clothes for as long as possible?

Advantages: Why make clothes last longer?

An item of clothing is not just an item of clothing. Every sweater, every dress, every pair of pants and every sneaker has its own story. Someone has harvested, dyed or sewn it - and someone has walked, driven or flown for it. What's more, the material had to be taken from the environment somewhere - and production doesn't work without the use of time and energy.

In this section, I would therefore like to the following advantages of long-lasting fashion before we move straight on to the tips:

  • Preventing mountains of textile waste
  • Reduced use of pollutants
  • Save cash
  • Conserve resources
  • Protect animals
  • Stop exploitation of textile workers
  • Appreciate clothing
  • Have less stress

Preventing mountains of textile waste

According to a comprehensive study by the fashion label Labfresh₁, every German produces an average of around 4.7 kilograms of textile waste per year. Of this, a full 2.7 kilograms are disposed of in landfills and 1.2 kilograms are incinerated. Only a fraction can be recycled or reused untreated.

However, the extent of textile consumption is not just about the mountains of clothes that are no longer needed or are broken. Around 6 kilograms of worn clothing are thrown away per capita. exported every yearwhich in turn creates further mountains of waste abroad.

Reduced use of pollutants

The longer our clothes last, the fewer harmful substances need to be used that endanger us, animals and our planet. Such harmful substances include, for example Plant protection products from the cultivation of natural fibers, the use of Insecticides during transport, synthetic dyes based on crude oil or surface finishing with chlorine, bromine, iodine or fluorine.

Save cash

According to the above study, every Germans spend an average of 910 euros a year on new clothes out. If you make your own clothes last as long as possible, you can significantly reduce the amount you spend on new purchases - and save money. Invest money more wisely instead. On closer inspection, this is a good example of how you can save money with sustainability can.

Conserve resources

Above all, the environment also benefits from a longer lifespan for your clothes. Finally you conserve the planet's natural resourcesbecause for your closet no or only significantly fewer new raw materials are required become. In addition, the environmental impact of toxins from textile factories is also reduced for your lifestyle.

Protect animals

Whether fur, wool or silk - buying fashion with animal-based fabrics has consequences for the animals and creates a demand for such goods. However, if your existing clothing lives longer, you automatically participate less in the Animal suffering in the textile industry.

Stop exploitation of textile workers

Anyone who prefers long-lasting fashion and promotes the preservation of their own clothes for as long as possible is also automatically doing something against the Exploitation of textile workers. After all, you don't need any other pieces for your own clothing style. produced in poorly ventilated, noisy factories for subterranean wages be

Notice: If you no longer want to participate in exploitation, you should of course consciously opt for fair, ecological fashion when buying clothes. How you recognize sustainable fashion you can find out in the linked article.

Appreciate clothing

If you make sure that your clothes last as long as possible, you appreciate them. The Appreciation is not just for the clothes, but also for the people who worked on them, the environment and future generations. You simply show gratitude for the things you have. This is an important approach of Slow Fashion - and a clear characteristic of the conscious handling of one's own clothing.

Good to know: The average wearing time of garments per capita in Germany is currently around three years.₂ So there is great potential for greater appreciation.

Have less stress

Durable fashion also has the advantage that you automatically minimalist lives and not constantly accumulating new possessions that cause stress, at least subconsciously. Instead, you gain More overview, time and money. A positive effect that comes pretty much automatically as soon as you extend the life of your clothes and go shopping less often.

12 tips: What can everyone do for long-lasting fashion?

Durable fashion: How to make your clothes live longer

Now you know the main advantages! So that you can enjoy your clothes for as long as possible, let's move on to the promised tips.

The longer you use an item of clothing, the more the production and your purchase have been worthwhile. Ensuring long-lasting fashion is not only the responsibility of the manufacturer, but also of the wearer. In addition to the material, for example Handling, care, storage and also a dash of self-knowledge is decisive for the service life of textiles.

I would now like to give you the most important ideas and advice to help your Make your closet a little more sustainable be

1. value quality and timelessness

In fact, many fashion labels deliberately do not produce their goods to last forever - but there are, of course, rays of hope. As a consumer, you should make sure say goodbye to the principle of "mass instead of class and instead opt for long-lasting, high-quality fashion - and appreciate the value of craftsmanship.

You can easily recognize carefully manufactured clothing, for example, by the even stitches in the fabric. Social and ecological product labels such as "GOTS" and "OEKO-Tex" help you to recognize quality.

Many items of clothing are thrown away because they are no longer up to date. That's why you should also Prefer fashion that literally never goes out of fashion. Timeless quality goods ultimately live the longest and thus lay the foundation for the longest possible life of sweaters, T-shirts, dresses, shirts, pants and other items of clothing.

2. pay attention to the correct storage

On a hanger, in a shoe box or folded? Every type of clothing and, above all, every material has different storage requirements. As an environmentally conscious consumer, you should therefore know what is important in order to keep your fashion for as long as possible.

Sweaters, for example, you should rather store foldedas they are heavy on the right and wear out quickly when hanging on the hanger. The following belong on the hanger instead garments clothes, blazers, suits and blouses - so they stay as smooth and wrinkle-free as possible.

You should store shoes protected in the box and also protect them with a Shoetrees equip. This also makes cleaning easier when you take them out of the closet again. You can also keep handbags in shape by stuffing them with some waste paper, for example.

3. reduce the number of wash cycles

Be aware that every cycle in the washing machine is a stressful ordeal for your clothes. Therefore: The fewer the number of washes, the longer they will look good.

But how can this tip for long-lasting fashion be put into practice?

For example, by preferring to use your Airing clothesif they have not been subjected to any particular wear and tear. You can safely put jeans in the freezer to get rid of odors and bacteria. And your range of sweaters can be protected from odors by always using a wear a long-sleeved shirt underneath.

When absolutely nothing else works, the Gentle wash cycle or even better, the Hand wash with cold water is recommended.

4. pay attention to the care instructions

However, even a low spin speed or water temperature setting still means stress for your clothes. But of course you can't completely avoid doing laundry in the washing machine. Either way, you should always follow the Manufacturer specifications on the small, sewn-on "piece of paper".

Some items of clothing may not ironed, only treated with the wool wash cycle or simply not treated at all with technical appliances be cleaned. The latter is the case, for example, if you want to clean Birkenstocks. They are usually made of leather and cork. They are usually made of leather and cork. To keep them as durable as possible, you should observe certain things. For example (depending on the stain) the combination of suede brush, suede eraser, cornstarch and vinegar helps.

5. dry your clothes in the air

Air dry your laundry

If you want your clothes to last as long as possible, you shouldn't tumble dry them. energy saving dry in the air. So that you spare the textile fabric and the environment is happy too. This tip is certainly also a useful one, Sustainable life hacks from our grandparents.

If it is dry outside in the fresh air and the humidity is not too high, this advice stands to reason. at both high and low outside temperatures nothing stands in the way. Simply hang your laundry to dry on the clothes horse on the balcony or the washing line in the garden.

6. use a lint shaver

Over time, some fluff or fibers usually come loose from the yarns of textile fabrics. Particularly with cashmere, wool, cotton or synthetic fibers, this often results in annoying and Visible nodules on the surface. Ultimately, they lead to many people disposing of their clothes earlier.

This so-called "pilling" cannot, of course, be completely prevented - but fortunately it can still be easily removed with a battery-powered lint shaver. You can set it to different cutting heights and thus Simply collect the nodules in the integrated collection container and dispose of.

With many items of clothing, lint rollers are actually enough to stubborn lint from your favorite clothes and make them look like new again.

7. repair damaged clothes

A broken item of clothing is a lost item of clothing? Of course not! It doesn't matter whether a shirt button has fallen off, a shirt has faded or a small hole has appeared in the sleeve of your sweater. even without being able to sew most items of clothing can still be repaired and saved with a few simple steps. For example, you can restore a faded shirt by re-dyeing it using ordinary textile dyes.

And if the zipper is broken or the sole of your favorite shoes is slowly coming off? Then simply take them to the Tailoring or shoemaking. This is real appreciation for your clothes - and basically keeps them alive forever.

8. rely on natural moth protection

A conspicuous hole caused by moths has already shortened the useful life of some sweaters and T-shirts. You can also solve this problem Prevent in a natural way.

Since the inconspicuous moths have an aversion to the smell of Cedar wood a few pieces of wood made of the same material in your closet will help. It is advisable to roughen them with some sandpaper every now and then to keep moths away permanently.

Equally effectively helps the pleasant Lavender scent to repel moths. Simply place two or three lavender sachets next to your clothes.

9. keep spare parts in a specific place

Store spare parts for clothing in one place

Unfortunately, many textiles only end up in the bin because there are no spare parts to hand. We've already talked about repairing fashion - but with the help of a simple Box for spare parts in your closet you can make it even easier for yourself. You can store all the spare parts supplied with new items there and regularly add the odd button, zipper or thread to your range of spare parts.

10. keep stain sources at a distance

For long-lasting fashions, it's worth taking them away from classic sources of stains, such as Red wine, coffee, perfume, deodorant, make-up, fats and oilsto keep them away. This tip therefore serves to prevent one of the main reasons why clothes are thrown away.

But even if the stubborn stain has already appeared, there is still hope thanks to a few household remedies. Red wine stains, for example, can be removed quite easily. with highly carbonated mineral water or dabbed with White wine vinegar and a subsequent wash cycle.

And for older grease stains, you should definitely try it with Gall soap or washing-up liquid before you give up on your garment too quickly.

Do you have any other tips in the fight against stains on clothes? Then just write me a comment under this post.

11. pass your clothes in case of disinterest

Of course, there are times when you simply no longer like a dress, hat or hoodie. Nevertheless, you can of course extend their lifespan by buying them at flea markets or online, for example. sell or give away. Also thereby you spare Natural resourcesbecause you saved someone else from having to buy a new item of clothing.

12. know yourself

A final, but very important tip for long-lasting fashion is a good and honest self-assessment. If you rather a restless, clumsy type If you're in the woods, you need to take extra care when you're at the stove, doing something in the garden or going for a walk in the woods, for example. It's better to wear clothes that can take a stain in an emergency without ending up in the garbage can.

In short: Dress simply according to the occasionso that you can enjoy all your clothes for as long as possible.

The longevity of your clothing can be promoted!

Durable fashion tip: Know yourself

Now you know both why it's worth wearing clothes for as long as possible and how to put this into practice. Above all, give preference to timeless quality items, make sure they are stored correctly, follow the care instructions, repair damaged garments and use a natural moth repellent.

And in general: treat your fashion with care and appreciation. Then you will get something out of it for a long time and at the same time save your wallet, the environment and the well-being of textile workers.

Do you have any questions, suggestions or tips for long-lasting fashion? Then I look forward to your comment!

Stay consumer-consciously sustainable,

Christoph from CareElite - Plastic-free living

PS: In the next post, I'll introduce you to great, sustainable fashion brands before. Use it as a point of contact if you need to replace one or two items of clothing over time.

₁ Labfresh: The fashion Waste Index, available at [19.12.2022].

₂ RP Digital GmbH: How clothes last particularly long (as of 29.08.2022), available at [19.12.2022].

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* Links with asterisks are so-called Affiliate linksIf you click on it and buy something, you automatically and actively support my work with, as I receive a small share of the proceeds - and of course nothing changes in the product price. Many thanks for your support and best regards, Christoph!

Christoph Schulz

Christoph Schulz

I'm Christoph, an environmental scientist and author - and here at CareElite I'm campaigning against plastic waste in the environment, climate change and all the other major environmental problems of our time. Together with other environmentally conscious bloggers, I want to give you tips & tricks for a naturally healthy, sustainable life as well as your personal development.

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