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This is how A.S.Adventure combats microplastics

When you wash synthetic fabrics, minuscule particles of plastic are released, which make their way to the oceans via wastewater. How can we keep our love of the outdoor life from polluting our planet?

What damage can microplastics cause?

No less than a third of the plastic soup in our oceans consists of microfibres that are released when washing synthetic clothing. Water treatment plants are not able to filter the smallest particles of plastic out of the water, either. The impact? Many animals, like fish and seabirds, eat these practically invisible pieces of plastic without realising it, which means that they do not eat enough food and they starve.

 

Plus, these microplastics also present a clear and present danger to humans. Because their rough surface is filled with holes, these little particles of plastic easily bind with chemical waste substances from factories and the agricultural industry. When these microplastics are eaten by fish, which we catch and eat later on, we are thus poisoning ourselves with the plastic waste as well.

What does A.S.Adventure do?

A complete ban of synthetic fabrics is easier said than done. It’s really no surprise that they are so often used in outdoor clothing: their unique properties are not always comparable to natural textiles. And natural fibres also have their own environmental issues. That’s why A.S.Adventure opts for brands that actively work to reduce their ecological footprint, like Vaude, for example. Did you know that this German brand launched the first ocean-friendly fleece from Tencel® at the end of 2019? It only releases biodegradable microfibres during washing. And we are making our own efforts to reduce the heap of waste with our house brand, Ayacucho and its range of jackets made from Repreve. Repre-what? That's the name of the fabric made from recycled plastic bottles. Yes, all those plastic bottles that are such a plague to the environment are being used in our coats. 

Large loads, small loads: how can I be ecological when I do my laundry?

Sustainable actions are constantly being required. As a consumer, you can make a difference too. A few tips:

  • Always try to choose natural materials. For example, try merino wool, which is also anti-bacterial. And did you know about bamboo and Tencel? These yarns are much more environmentally friendly.
  • Collect the microfibres in your washing machine, for example with a micro-filter or by using the Guppy Friend laundry bag. The fibres will definitely not end up in the wastewater.
  • Wash your synthetic clothing less frequently, on a shorter cycle, and at a lower temperature. Giving your clothes a good airing is sometimes enough to remove the sweat and odours.
  • Only wash in full loads. This causes less friction between your clothes.
  • Use liquid laundry detergent rather than abrasive powders. Fortunately, you don't have to look far: you can find environmentally friendly washing products at A.S.Adventure.  For example, Grangers is completely free from PFC and other harmful substances (the Bluesign label proves this). Other options are water-based Nikwax and of course Seepje, a 100% vegetable laundry product. Or why don't you try making your own detergent? You can find some inspiration here.
  • Throw the lint from your dryer’s filter into the bin instead of washing it down the sink;