Whether you are shopping at a retail store, online, or at a local thrift shop, nowadays the wardrobe possibilities are endless. Any style, color, and comfort level can easily be found. But many shoppers are not aware that their choice of clothing material can impact a sustainable lifestyle and enlarge a shopper’s carbon footprint. Ever consider a hemp wardrobe
The material woven into your clothing does have an impact on the life of your clothes, your CO2 emissions, and how your body interacts with your wardrobe.
Next opportunity you have, take a few minutes and look through your wardrobe and study the labels, just to get an idea of what’s behind your garments. You will definitely see plenty of cotton, wool, and various blends of polyester. Maybe even some leather. But most likely you will not notice any hemp on the materials listing. Hemp?
Why You Need to Add Hemp Into Your Hemp Wardrobe
Hemp clothing has been quietly gaining popularity and is now more sought-after by those aware of its environmental benefits. Despite our country’s long history with hemp (George Washington grew hemp on his farm,) the banning of hemp in the United States back in 1970, eliminated it as a sustainable material in clothing. That is slowing changing and it is now becoming more accessible.
Consumers are able to import hemp products (and clothing) from Canada, China, France, and other countries. But closer to home, growing public support of cannabis is encouraging hemp growers to expand their operations and is showing promise to be a more widely used material in clothing.
What Is Hemp?
Despite its many benefits (and we’ll talk more about those later,) hemp is still regarded as a material for hippies due to its connection to cannabis and marijuana. But what exactly is that connection?
Hemp and marijuana are the same plants: Cannabis Sativa. The only difference is that marijuana contains THC, which is the element that gets people high. Hemp doesn’t have THC; consuming it won’t get you stoned. Consuming hemp, and the cannabinoids (CBD) in hemp, however, may help with headaches, inflammation, anxiety, depression, seizures, and brain injuries.
Wearing a hemp shirt (as part of your hemp wardrobe) won’t relieve your headache or help with any of these symptoms, but it just might build further awareness of its usefulness and encourage others to favor the material.
Why Choose Hemp For Clothes?
It’s Sustainable – If you are looking to reduce your wardrobe’s carbon footprint, look on the tags. Apparel companies that are looking to keep their products “green” are starting to move away from materials like leather and conventional cotton and to products like bamboo or hemp. Hemp is one of the fastest-growing plants in the world.
In the game of hemp versus cotton, hemp wins hands down. Hemp requires half as much water to grow and grows much faster. Hemp also naturally repels pests, so there is no need for pesticides that concern a lot of buyers.
It’s Durable – Even if you’ve never bought or seen hemp clothing, you may have used hemp products like rope, canvas, or sails. Another element of hemp’s sustainability is its ability to last long. The fibers of hemp are stronger than cotton and can withstand more cycles through the wash. Stronger fibers mean that consumers need to buy less clothing, and less energy has to be put into producing clothes. Our Future Footprint, an apparel company that offers bamboo and hemp shirts, offers a lifetime guarantee on their products.
It’s Comfortable and Absorbent – As a new fan of hemp, to be honest, when I first ordered shirts for our startup, Our Future Footprint, I thought I would like the feel of the bamboo more than the hemp. I pictured the scratchy feel of hemp rope. I was impressed at how soft the shirt was when I tried it on, but I was more impressed by other hemp’s other benefits. The first day I wore the shirt, I spent the morning planting trees and hiking around Colorado. I was definitely sweating, but you couldn’t tell with my hemp shirt. The shirt was strong, but absorbent, and made working outside a breeze. I’ve even worn hemp shirts during yoga and other outdoor workouts. Hemp is becoming a more popular fabric for clothes like socks and diapers for this reason.
Keep an Eye Out for Hemp Clothing Coming On The Market
It might be easier to search online for hemp clothing than in your local department store, but when you first try on your new hemp shirt or a pair of socks, the effort will be worth it. Talk to your favorite brands about adding hemp into their collections, and spread the word about the benefits of hemp to friends and colleagues. By demanding hemp and proudly endorsing the plant, we can create more sustainable clothing options and reduce our carbon footprint.
Megan Okonsky is a hemp wardrobe expert, a writer, yogi, and traveler who enjoys being barefoot and doesn’t mind the term “granola.”
She is the marketing director for Our Future Footprint, an apparel company that plants trees and donates to conservation and education initiatives for each purchase.