What’s one fabric you always recommend consumers avoid, and which one would you replace it with?

LB: Viscose! It’s one of the go-to fabrics for most mid to massive fashion brands because it drapes nicely on the body, prints well (the fabric holds pigment well), and is very cheap. Viscose is a semi-synthetic fabric, and although it is not made directly from plastic (it’s made from cellulose) and is technically biodegradable, it needs to go through many problematic chemical processes to be made that is incredibly harmful to the workers in these factories. According to Treehugger,” Inhaling small doses of carbon disulfide, one of the main chemicals used for its making, can cause nightmares, sleep disturbance, irritability, and memory disturbance, as well as peripheral neuropathy, parkinsonism, and retinopathy, to anyone exposed to it for long periods of time.” In addition to being harmful to produce, viscose is also a fabric that quickly loses shape after a few washes, making the garments made from lower quality and more disposable. Lyocell is currently the greener alternative that you should look for when shopping. 

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