3 Reasons to Buy Sustainable When Outfitting Your Kids
3 Reasons to Buy Sustainable When Outfitting Your Kids
For many, choosing clothes for their kids isn’t complicated. Whatever is available and inexpensive is the name of the game. Maybe those are the only considerations they have the luxury of making. But, for others, there are a few more factors that come into play: How long do I need it to last? What kind of value am I getting for my money? Is style important to me? How do I want to show up and support this industry?
Having dressed two kiddos of my own and experiencing, first-hand, how quickly we jump from size to size, as well as what brands feel good while standing up to toddler play, I am becoming more and more aware of clothing waste, quality and source.
Lindsey Mundy and her family.
I remember purchasing a pair of leggings for my daughter. I walked out of the store smugly, proud of the incredible deal I just snagged, only spending a few dollars. She wore them the very next day. It was sunny and beautiful, so we decided to go for a walk. Only a few steps down the road, my daughter tripped and fell, immediately putting a large hole in the knee of her brand new pants. I shrugged it off. It’s not the end of the world, I thought. They hadn’t cost much. I would just toss them and move on to the next pair. But then I began to think: how many other parents were doing this--purchasing low-quality, inexpensive clothing just to toss it in the trash after a few wears? And in fact, where did this clothing come from? Items like this were obviously mass-produced. So who was making them? And under what conditions? This was the spiral that a hole in a pair of leggings sent me down, and led me to explore more sustainable, ethically made clothing options for my children.
Once you begin to learn the dark truths of fast fashion, you understand how important this movement is for those who can support it.
So, with that, here are 3 reasons to buy sustainable when it comes to outfitting your kids:
Turtledove London romper, made ethically with 100% GOTS certified organic cotton.
We support clothing practices that are aligned with a healthy, thriving environment for our children’s future.
Purchasing ethically and sustainably made clothes doesn’t just support a healthy environment today, but one for the future--the earth we are preparing to leave in our children’s hands. Leggings like the pair in my story are an example of how quickly clothes can end up in a landfill, a problem that results in serious repercussions for our planet. In fact, it is suggested that North Americans throw away 10 million tons of clothing annually.
Sustainable clothing brands use higher quality fabrics that are often organic, meaning their production practices have less environmental impact. The product also has a longer life cycle than mass-produced clothing, meaning less waste. But it’s important to remember that these practices don’t just lead to better clothing. They result in less air pollution, higher soil quality and safer crops. It also means better health for farmers, as harvesting organic crops significantly reduces their exposure to dangerous pesticides and chemicals.
All of these practices mean a brighter future for the earth our children and our children’s children will be asked to live on for years to come. When we take these actions today, we tell our children that the future of their health matters and we will do everything we can to protect it.
Kukukid polkadot dress, made ethically in Poland, with 95% cotton certified OEKO TEX Standard 100
Sustainably made clothes stand up to tough play.
One of the best things about small-brand clothing is that it is not mass-produced. Each item has more care taken in its creation and is often hand-made. As a result, it is more likely to stand up to hard play, as well as multiple wash-cycles--since we know it will inevitably need to survive regular loads of laundry. These brands produce clothing made with high quality fabrics that are comfortable, cozy and designed with kids in mind. They support play that is care-free, explorative and critical for child development--the way play should be. Pingo Apparel is a great option if you want to browse a carefully curated selection of clothes from small brands. The store stocks ethically-made clothing for kids, made by companies that believe in and follow fair business practices and use primarily GOTS certified organic fabrics in their production. The result? A winning wardrobe for your child as they embark on their every-day adventures.
When you support sustainable clothing brands, you are almost always getting more bang for your buck when it comes to quality. Although the price point is higher on individual items, they are more likely to stand the test of time, meaning they can be worn longer and passed down to younger siblings, cousins or friends. They can also be re-sold on second-hand sites or stores, putting some of that money back in your pocket. This also means, if you are questioning price, you can easily buy second-hand yourself and still end up with beautiful pieces for your children that have so much life left in them--exactly why many stores have launched preloved purchasing options, where shoppers can get their hands on stunning pieces at a lower price-point.
Of course, holes and rips do inevitably happen from time to time. But parents have a far greater tendency to mend the piece, rather than tossing it away as they might with inexpensive clothing. In fact, some brands even offer mending as a part of their customer service model, so be sure to explore that option. Naturally, a higher value is attached to the clothes because more money was spent on them. Therefore, we work to make them last.
CarlijnQ Tractor sweatshirt, made ethically in Turkey with 95% GOTS certified organic cotton.
Instilling values in our kids through the clothes we buy: showing them what kind of businesses we support and why.
When we purchase ethically responsible and sustainable clothing, we are sending an important message to our kids. By supporting companies that want the best for our environment and who care about ethical business and production practices, we tell our children that these things are important--that they matter to us. We instill the values of responsibility, conscious consumption, and ethics just by purchasing from these brands. It communicates that we have put thought into the businesses we support and we do so with our dollar. It tells our kids that they have a voice that can sometimes be expressed through the way they choose to spend their money. It tells them that their economic decisions can have impact and speak to who they are as individuals. These are the values that we begin to instill and the standards we demand that set the stage for our children’s role as a consumer.
So, as the holidays approach and you get hyped up, ready to tackle that gift list, I encourage you to pause and consider where you are choosing to put your money. I challenge you, when buying clothes for your kids this year, go sustainable (and local!). Support companies who are doing it right and know that, by doing so, you are supporting the future of our planet and ethically responsible practices. Not only will you be putting your children in high-quality products that last, but you’ll be teaching them, through your purchases, that we can be impactful and responsible consumers just by putting a little bit of thought into the clothes we buy.
About the author: Lindsay is a health and wellness blogger, teacher, and certified nutrition coach. As a mom of two, she understands the importance of long-term physical and mental health for all ages, and is deeply passionate about helping others become the change makers in their own home. She writes on all things nutrition, healthy and low-waste living, and motherhood. Subscribe and join her community to receive weekly wellness info right to your inbox.
Visit www.lindsaymundy.ca to learn more.
Lindsay is wearing our adult pathera sweatshirt by Tootsa Macginty, made of 100% gots certified organic cotton, and ethically made in India.