The water use is 3.3 and 0.7 liters, respectively. Linen is a fibre that we’ve been using for more than 10,000 years. google_ad_height = 250; Please note that some of the links on this site are affiliate links. Cotton Sustainability; Circularity of Cotton. Water Footprint Network, 2016. And it’s not only linen bedlinen that we love more than cotton. Quick Overview. Living in Sydney, I’ve become accustomed to summers which regularly sees days hitting highs of close to (or over) 40 degrees celsius. And how can you tell the difference between the two fabrics? Each time you launder a linen piece, it’ll soften more and more, while still retaining its resilience as the fabric is woven tightly. That makes linen ideal for summer and working in offices without any air conditioning (we feel your pain). google_ad_width = 300; Cotton basics are sold in abundance; our every day tees are made of cotton, the denim we reach for on repeat are made of cotton, and it’s likely you have a cotton sweater, shirt or dress tucked away in your closet too. Linen is more of a niche fibre than a fibre that can be produced at scale and in high production levels, like cotton for example. google_ad_client = "ca-pub-2724039303129549"; *Source: How Quickly Do Textile Microfibers Degrade in Aquatic Environments? The first thing that probably comes to mind when thinking about shopping sustainably are natural fibres. Do you like wearing linen? Wearing Portmans polka dot linen dress, Jo Mercer heels, Chanel boy bag, Missoma necklace, Mejuri earrings, Linjer watch, Orelia bracelet, Swarovski bracelet, Pandora pearl ring. Linen is less resource-hungry, and once it has finished its useful life linen fabric will simply biodegrade with no harmful waste or by-products. Your email address will not be published. What that means is you stay cooler for longer, and any moisture that is produced is quickly wicked away. Unlike linen, which actually gets better with every wash. Linen is also moth-resistent and anti-microbial too, meaning your clothes stay fresher and looking great for longer. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below x, Your email address will not be published. After sorting, the fabrics are run through a machine that shreds the fabric into yarn and further into raw fiber. To create the fabric, linen yarn is spun from the fibres found in the stems of the flax plant, and woven into the textile that we call linen. Sustainability. We love linen fabric’s natural creases, but if you really need to iron your linen clothes make sure they are slightly damp. The majority of recycled cotton is claimed through mechanical recycling. Last summer I purchased a shirt made from ramie – looks like linen, I googled it, it grows in India and China and has long fibres. There’s a lot of great qualities to really love when it comes to linen clothing. https://www.closet-fashionista.com/. It was a happy coincidence, but I’d found some stone and lime green (!!) Organic cotton: Conventional cotton remains one of the most widely grown crops, and uses approximately 25% of the world’s insecticides and more than 10% of the world’s pesticides. We love them for their comfort, functionality, durability and sustainability. Regularly used cotton sheets, if looked after, might last for about five years. We love natural fabrics. In this wholesome post we want to share with you a summary of investigation into the sustainability of different kinds of fabrics and suggests steps that you can take to reduce your environmental footprint when choosing fabrics. It was hailed for its durability and versatility, with many linen items in the home handed down from generation to generation. I find it impossible and avoid all linen clothes because I can’t iron out the creases! I also get tired of having armpit stains on my cotton tees, maybe linen would help alleviate that, ha ha. Linen fabric itself doesn’t perform medical function. And I’d say I’ve been very forthcoming about how much I love to be able to incorporate linen textures into my wardrobe even now. The end product of this process ultimately falls into a category that is somewhere between naturals and synthetics. Linen is harvested by hand and is therefore more expensive to produce. Organic cotton is a good choice if you are trying to buy environmentally-friendly textiles, but due to the reduction in crop yields resulting from the lack of chemicals allowed for organic cotton production, it requires yet more land. They simply have a much more interesting look and feel to cotton alternatives. Whilst cotton is preferable to synthetic fibres, linen bedding still wins hands down in the comfort department. They are unfussy, unfaddy and show that whilst you care about your appearance you are not swayed by fast fashion trends. First, it regulates temperature extremely efficiently, with research showing that you’ll generally perspire less when wearing linen rather than cotton fibres, due to its natural ability to wick moisture away from your body. Cotton’s Unsophisticated–And Homegrown–Supply Chain . The feeling of linen is lovely, the texture and softness is unique, and the fact that it just … In the debate over linen vs cotton we are firmly on the side of linen, and for good reason. The flax plant is resilient. Just blissfully well rested and ready for your day. Linen also happens to be 30% stronger than cotton and happens to last a lot longer, we’re talking years longer here. Cotton Incorporated’s Lifestyle Monitor™ research shows that consumers are seeking out recycled materials, but “recycled” does not necessarily equate to “sustainable” in a consumers’ mind. Linen clothes also offer the same temperature-regulating properties and supersoft comfort. You might also notice a visible lined pattern in the weave of a linen garment, whereas cotton can appear smoother and more uniform. Cotton Sustainability Basics. When cotton became mass-produced in the 19th century, linen lost its universal place in fashion. Texture: Cotton is not as fine as linen. Hi, I really enjoyed your article. Both naturally derived from plant fibers and popular among luxury bedding products, linen and cotton nevertheless each have their own distinctive feel, price point, and benefits. Naylor, Geoffrey RS. Rayon is essentially a raw material converted through a chemical process. During Medieval times in Europe, linen was popularly used to produce clothing, sacks, sheets, fishing nets bags and more, and it was widely believed that the flowers protected against witchcraft and black magic. Linen requires more ironing and is more prone to wrinkles than cotton. Most children and baby clothes are made with cotton, as well as bed linens and other fabric items. Linen also doesn’t have as wide of a use as a fibre like cotton because it crinkles and scrunches easily – this limits it’s versatility and practicality of use. In fact, research has shown that people wearing linen perspire less than those wearing cotton. However, the production of linen requires less water and fares better in terms of water toxicity. The texture of linen is unique; it has a lot of depth which gives it an interesting appearance, while the hand-feel of the fibre is soft to the touch. Find sustainable cotton clothes in the cotton shop. Cotton clothes can be lovely, but they can also become threadbare and lose their shape after repeated washing. Linen is made of long, hollow fibers that allow air to circulate freely and move around moisture very well not allowing moisture to build up. Here you'll find outfit inspiration, how to get more mileage out of your closet, styling hacks, and musings on the state of my wardrobe. And then there’s the drain on resources; 2,700 litres of water are required to produce the cotton to make one simple t-shirt. Globally, hemp is already an established crop that is dominated by three regions. "Toward Sustainable Water Use in the Cotton Supply Chain." Whilst superior qualities such as strength, durability and softness made linen a choice fabric over the ages, its association with aristocracy is in fact not the reason linen is more expensive than cotton. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation state that flax uses 13 times less pesticides than potatoes, but is only approximately 1% of the world’s apparel fibre consumption. I love fabrics. But which natural fabric is best? Assuming linen requires more ironing than cotton, its use requires more energy. Linen vs Cotton: Which Fabric is Better for Earth? Passed on using flax strands, the material has been made for a wide number of years and is one of the world’s most settled and most prized surfaces; it was even the material of decision for Roman robes! Explore three intersecting paths of cotton's circular lifecycle. E.g. google_ad_slot = "1851534310"; We seldom question where our clothes come from, and even less so the qualities of the fabrics we’re wearing, beyond whether it keeps us ‘cool’ or ‘warm’. Which is super exciting! It was used on its own and blended with other fibres. The method of producing linen fabric from the flax plant uses far less water than it does to produce the same amount of cotton. Still, there are big differences in the quality of linen from different countries. According to the European Confederation of Linen and Hemp, “Across its lifecycle, a linen shirt uses 6.4 litres of water” compared to 2,700 litres for a cotton shirt. Are you with us in the linen and cotton debate? To me, this is the epitome of a sustainable textile, and the reason why I’m so quick to spring for a linen piece over cotton. The fibre is spun from the stems of the flax plant, which in itself is hugely versatile; all of its parts can be used for something – whether that is soap, oils, paper, or cattle feed – meaning that no waste is created during the production process. There’s a reason food stylists, Instagrammers and interior stylists choose linen textiles. Could I use linen for microwave bowl cozy’s? While linen comes from many sources and its impact can vary, Lenzing guarantees Tencel is made from guaranteed sustainability harvested trees and has a closed-loop production process. Cotton also is naturally hypoallergenic, so that people who have contact allergies can safely wear this material without fear of a reaction. Cotton vs Linen for Bedding Fabric . From stylish picnics to poolside snaps, linen homewares are rightly having a moment. While the stats aren’t quite as common on the resources required to produce linen, from what I’ve gathered, the cultivation of the flax plant to maturity uses approximately four to seven times less the amount of water used in cotton manufacturing. However, the sustainability of Tencel is better guaranteed than linen. 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