The eco-fashion world is overflowing with offerings of luxurious raw silk, eco-cashmere, 100% alpaca and homegrown organic linen. All of these textiles are great for the environment and make for beautiful additions to your wardrobe, but there’s a dirty little secret no one’s talking about – they are really hard to care for!
We’re talking dry-cleaning, hand washing and ironing. These are garments that you wear with the utmost care. You lovingly fold them or hang them up in your closet at the end of the day. You avoid stains at all costs.
But when you’re a mom of young children, chances are good that you’re going to get some kind of bodily fluid wiped on you at some point during the day. It’s just a fact. My daughter has a cold and I have no less than 12 different smears of snot on my shirt right now. Seriously.
If you have young kids, you can’t wear any fussy garments that are prone to staining or that need any special care. While those silks and knits and linens are enticing, they’re just not a good choice for someone who’s probably going to get a peanut butter handprint or two on their back before lunchtime. And if you’re running around after kids all day, you need your clothing to be comfortable for you – no constricting silks – and comfortable for your little bundles of joy – no scratchy wool to irritate their sensitive faces.
What’s an eco-conscious mom in the 21st century to do?
Luckily, there are sustainable textiles that you can wear without living in fear of a stray glob of vegetable puree. Organic cotton, eco-denim, recycled polyester and eco-modal are all good options. They are machine washable, do not easily stain and most importantly they are comfortable. So you can have no fear of laying on the floor and sticking your arm into the dust bunny colony beneath your couch to retrieve your son’s toy car for the tenth time today.
Here’s a list of seven eco-friendly clothing brands for moms to get you started:
PACT is a go-to for everyday essentials like tees, sweats and leggings. They use 100% organic cotton, non-toxic dyes and sweatshop-free labor. Perfect for rolling around on the floor with your two-year-old or falling asleep on the couch at 9 PM while watching sitcom reruns.
People Tree is a UK-based brand that carries a plethora of organic cotton blouses, tees and pants. Their cotton garments are comfortable enough for chasing your toddler around at the park, but cute enough to wear on days you have to go to work and interact with other adults.
If you’re going for a chic Parisian look when you take your bèbè to the park, look no further than Amour Vert. You’ll find their classic striped shirts in GOTS certified organic cotton along with sleek drapey tops that will mask your mommy tummy. Bonus eco points: they plant a tree for every tee they sell.
While Everlane isn’t a sustainable fashion brand, per se, they do have some environmentally friendly options. Their denim line leads the pack in sustainability – their factory uses 98% recycled water, air dries their jeans to reduce energy use during production and relies heavily on solar power. They’re mom jeans you can feel good about.
Speaking of denim, no one does it better than Levi’s. Vintage Levi’s are all the rage amongst eco-conscious consumers, but if you’re a new mom, you barely have enough time to put on your jeans let alone scour the racks at Goodwill to find them. But fear not! Levi’s Water<Less line uses on average 28% less water than conventional manufacturing practices, so you can buy them new without feeling guilty about ruining the environment.
Alternative Apparel carries a ton of casual wear staples like hoodies, sweatshirts and tees. They offer eco-fleece, eco-gauze and eco-jersey lines made of organic and recycled materials. For days when you don’t feel like getting dressed, but you have to make that run to Costco, their eco-fleece joggers have you covered.
Threads for Thought uses recycled polyester, organic cotton, and eco-modal in their casual and active wear lines. I recommend their yoga pants and sweatpants because, let’s be honest – if you’re a mom, you probably spend most of your time in sweats and yoga pants.
I basically live in t-shirts and jeans on most days. What kind of mom clothes do you like to wear?
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