With all the talk about sustainability, we all want to do our part to make a difference. One of the best ways? Through fashion.

There’s no way of sugarcoating this: The fashion industry is notoriously unsustainable and wrecks havoc on the environment.

The World Resources Institute estimates that five trillion litres of (fresh) water are used yearly in garment production, while the United Nations Environment Programme points out that the fashion industry generates “more greenhouse gas emissions than all international flights and maritime shipping combined”. Jaw-dropping, right?

But while many point the blame to fast fashion and its constant output (Watch: The True Cost), the luxury industry is not absolve of any guilt too. Leather tanning for example, to make the leather goods that are symbolic of many high-end labels, releases large quantities of heavy metals and other pollutants into water bodies and exposes them to the workers and people who depend on them for survival.

And we’re nowhere near scratching the surface on the magnitude and severity of the issue here.

So if you’re wanting to see real changes to the industry and create a sustainable, greener future for ourselves and the future generation, we’ve rounded up eight ways you can do to reduce your negative impact on the environment. While each action seems small and insignificant, the collective effort will undoubtedly make the fashion industry sit up and pay attention. With Earth Day falling on April 22, let it be our motivation to celebrate the home we live in, reflect on our behaviours and commit to doing our part.

More from CLEO:
10 Things You Can Do To Help The Environment Beyond Earth Day
Here’s Why Eco Luxury Is The Next Big Trend In Beauty
Eco-Friendly Beauty Brands You Should Buy From

Read more stories about sustainability in our digital issue.


Text: Ho Guo Xiong