Photo by Ryan Dearth
As aware yogis we like to give back to the earth and support the environment. Yet, as fashionable yogis, we like to look our best and keep up with popular yoga trends. Luckily, it’s easy to do both. Part of yoga, often translated as union, is about connecting and giving back to the environment. Here are some tips for how to celebrate union with the earth by dressing in a way that is friendly to the environment.
Shop from responsible companies that care about the earth
When researching a yoga clothing company, there are a few ways to determine if the company is eco-friendly.
If the company uses certified organic materials or bluesign® certified textiles they are using various eco-friendly materials. A Fair Trade Certified™ company ensures that the company pays fair wages to all of their employees and that their suppliers guarantee a certain quality working condition. A B Corpcertification means that companies prioritize social and environmental responsibility.
Do a little digging on the company before purchasing that new outfit you’ve fallen in love with. Do they have any of the above certifications? Do they promise a commitment to the environment in their mission statement? Do they use sustainable resources and eco-friendly practices? If you don’t want to do the research yourself, you can always trust the research we’ve already done, and shop from any of these 10 eco-friendly yoga clothing brands.
Save the shipping and buy local
One of the most overlooked factors of environmental impact is shipping.
If you are buying online, try to buy everything at once and from one source. This will cut down on packaging materials by allowing the company to ship all of your products in one box. The amount of greenhouse gases created by the shipping process will be limited to the one box.
Avoid the impacts of shipping altogether by buying local. Not only are you supporting local artisans and giving back to your local economy, but you are drastically decreasing the carbon footprint of your purchase.
Up-cycle the things you already own
You already paid the environmental costs of your clothing when you first purchased it. By upcycling it into a new fashion, you are getting twice as much out of it and limiting the number of new clothing items you purchase.
A Pinterest search for “diy yoga clothing” or “upcycle yoga clothing” will elicit countless tutorials demonstrating how to turn old styles into new favorites. Use old t-shirts to make fashionable yoga tops or comfortable yoga shorts. Use patches from multiple used clothing items and create a quilted pair of yoga pants.
Give old clothing a second chance
You may be tired of your well-loved clothing, but that doesn’t mean someone else’s used clothing won’t be exactly what you’re looking for. Check out the athletic section at local second-hand shops and consignment stores for cute yoga finds. Feel good about the next-to-nothing environmental impact of buying used clothing. Enjoy brand new styles in your closet. Not to mention the prices are much more affordable.
There are online versions of second-hand shops (like Tradesy) that allow you to find more exclusive styles. While this does have the downside of shipping, it is better for the environment than buying new clothing online.
Buy multi-use clothing that goes with everything
Rather than buying thirteen different boldly patterned yoga tops, consider buying a few basics that can be mixed and matched. Buy items that match at least three things you already own. Make sure everything you buy can be mixed and matched with each other. By buying and owning less, you are decreasing your carbon footprint and taking it easy on the earth.
Another way to get the most out of your purchase is to buy clothing that can be worn in multiple situations. Many yoga clothing companies sell fashionable clothes that are designed to be worn from the street into the studio and back.
Host a clothing swap with your friends and get a new wardrobe
Invite everyone to bring yoga outfits they no longer wear. You and your friends will trade your yoga clothing and go home with a new look, saving money and the environment.
With the growing popularity of eco-friendly fashion, it is easy to find eco-friendly trends no matter what style you are looking for. With a little effort and a desire to support our environment, you can make a positive impact simply by thinking twice about the clothing you put on your body.