environment2022/11/07

9 Reasons Why You Need Plant-based Dyes In Your Wardrobe

by Alana Redick

Plant-based dyes and specifically ayurvedic plant-dyes are having ‘a moment’ - they have a number of benefits for our skincare regimes, health, the planet and the people that make our clothes.

Here are the top 9 reasons why we should all make the swap for flower-powered materials this year. 

1. They're superfood for the body 

Our skin is the largest organ in the body. Many of us honour this by revitalising it with organic moisturisers, face masks and serums, yet we forget that the clothes we wear often have the very chemicals in that we shun in our skincare routine. Turmeric, neem, pomegranate, aloe vera, indigo flower and sappan barks are just some of the holistic and organic dyes that can benefit skin - think minimising acne, boosting immunity, soothing burns and calming breakouts.

2. Rainbow of options 

Why should sustainable fashion be beige? Nature is a rainbow and plant-dyes reflect that. Use a turmeric for a golden glow, indigo for a cooling shade, sappan bark for a coral pink or neem and aloe for a minimalist white. The rainbow is limitless.

3. Choose a chemical-free wardrobe 

Bleach, petrol, radioactive metals, NPEs (Nonylphenol ethoxylates) and over 250 restricted substances have been found in textile production. From endometriosis to breast cancer and infertility, the toxic effect of textile production on women’s health seems endless. The fashion industry has been caught red-handed and we're welcoming the resurgence of plant-dyes. 

4. A 5000 year-old beauty secret 

Ayurvastra (ayurvedic plant dyes) and plant dyeing is a 5000 year old Hindu yogic practice from Kerala that artisans have handed down through their ancestors. The practice involves using holistic plant roots, barks, flowers, leaves and stems to create ‘medicinal cloth’ that can prevent certain illnesses and heal our skin. Sadly it is a dying trade (pardon the pun) and all the more reason to support artisans through the switch to plant-dyes. 

5. Seasonal, local, organic  

We work with communities to pick and harvest organic crops based on the season. Ecosystems thrive, communities come together, local economies grow and jungles and forests are honoured by organic growth.

6. No harm, no foul 

We often fail to hear about the slow toll of chemicals on the health of people in the supply chain. Plant dyes are safe for workers to touch, breathe in and work with for hours at a time. So wearing happy and healthy colorful clothes, also means a happy and healthy supply chain too.

7. Biodegradable waste 

Because all the ingredients in plant-dyes are found in our natural environment, any excess waste can be disposed of naturally and is biodegradable. From using it to water crops to dyeing scraps and upcycling, the options are endless. 

8. Girl power 

By wearing plant-dyes, you can prioritise women’s health – not only yours but also the female garment workers handling our clothes across the globe. Much of the affects of synthetic dyes are unknown at this point but what we do know is that chemicals are a danger to women and their babies. Sporting plant-dyes can empower us as women! You go girl!

9. Veganuary doesn't have to end at the dinner table 

Plant-based and organic ayurvedic dyes are 100% vegan PETA certified. What a perfect way to incorporate plant-based clothing into your Veganuary. 

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