Green is this year’s Black

“The price of clothing goes way beyond the price tag.”

I saw this quote on Eartheasy— a website full of ideas for environmentally sustainable living. There is so much information out there about sustainable clothing solutions — new fibers, recycled materials, donated clothing — but one thing I hadn’t heard much about was the environmental and financial cost of cleaning all these clothes.

Dry cleaning has always seemed like the quick solution for sweaters and party dresses, but most of the chemicals used in dry cleaning are solvent based and harmful to the environment. The most prominent chemical used in dry cleaning — perchloroethylene — has been linked to both environmental and health hazards.

But there are alternatives.

Wet Cleaning – A new water-based system can now treat many garments made of 100% wools, cashmere, silk and more. Although it might not get out all stains, many clothing manufacturers are approving this process.

CO2 Cleaning – This process uses liquid carbon dioxide to dry clean clothing, thus eliminating the use of perchloroethylene. The process is said to cause less wear and tear on clothing, making your clothes last longer.

If you choose to forgo dry cleaning all together, you can also switch to a front-load washer, which saves both energy and water, but also does not use an agitator, causing less wear and tear on the clothes. And washing in cold water can save up to 80% of the energy used to wash in hot.

To learn more, visit Eartheasy.

Looking for eco-dry cleaning in Rhode Island? Try Zoots in Warwick, recently recognized by Inc. magazine as one of the top 50 green companies in the U.S.

Posted by: Molly/MollyatCaster


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