There is a huge and growing demand for sustainable green fabrics and this has inspired many manufacturers and designers to become a part of the environmental brigade. There are many options for organic fibres; however, that information is not enough to help you decide whether the fabric is good for the environment or not.
Cotton that is grown organically means that it does not make use of pesticides. However, that does not make it completely “green”. If the fibre has been dyed, ensure that the dyes are also organic. The best option here would be to go in for organic cotton fabric in light brown and cream shades.
Bamboo is a hot favourite due to its multiple properties that make it eco-friendly and sustainable. It is almost akin to a grass as it can regenerate and grow rapidly. However, bamboo fibre that feels like silk perhaps implies that it has been chemically treated. Furthermore, due to the rising popularity of bamboo fibre, the plant is deemed to be over harvested that would again imply the clearing of forests, harm to wildlife and trigger various interrelated environmental hazards.
Some clothing manufacturers consider wool to be a sustainable fibre as it can be replenished; however, this is not really a good thing for the sheep. They are roughly handled during the shearing process and subjected to pesticides, which accounts for unethical treatment.
Silk is obtained from silkworm cocoons and is a natural fibre that is both biodegradable and renewable. However, some countries do not exercise a stringent control on the ethical production of silk and have unfair labour practices. If you are looking for organic silk then look for “vegan silk”.
Linen is a green fibre as it is made out of flax, which does not require pesticide sprays. However, just like cotton fabric, ensure that linen is dyed in organic colours.
Hemp is another popular eco friendly fibre, as it does not require a lot of water to grow and no pesticides either. In fact, it is said to improve the soil composition. However, one thing to watch out for is the fact that hemp is not well regulated and you cannot be sure whether chemicals have been used in the process.