Dictionnaire des vêtements écologiques

Small ecological terminology dictionary on clothing


dictionary ecological clothing


The world of clothing contains a whole arsenal of terms to define it. When we add a notion of ecology to clothing, the variety of the lexicon only grows and it is sometimes difficult to navigate.

Here we provide some simple definitions which are not exhaustive. If you would like to see others appear, do not hesitate to comment them!

The fiber

There is a very, very wide variety of fibers on the market. These can be classified into 3 main categories: natural, semi-synthetic and synthetic.

Natural textile

The number of natural fibers is impressive. These are fibers which are either of animal or plant origin and which undergo mechanical transformation, without chemicals. The best known are cotton , linen , hemp , wool and silk but the list is much longer than that! We can even add a mineral component when we talk about gold or silver thread for example.

Semi-synthetic textile

Semi-synthetic fiber is neither a synthetic fiber nor truly a natural fiber. That is to say that it is a fiber which comes from a natural raw material (eg: bamboo, wood pulp, etc.) and which undergoes a more or less toxic chemical transformation to give, for example, rayon or viscose.

Synthetic textile

synthetic textile

Following the Second World War, the use of synthetic fibers skyrocketed! A synthetic fabric is a textile obtained by the synthesis of chemical compounds from petroleum (hydrocarbon). We are talking here, for example, about polyester, nylon and acrylic. This category is not considered environmentally friendly unless it is recycled .

Organic clothing

Who says natural fiber does not necessarily mean organic fabric. Organic clothing is one whose raw material does not use pesticides and whose dye is natural. In this case, one can look for certification such as Global Organic Texile Standard ( GOTS ) and Ecocert

Second life

Second life and second-hand are synonyms. These are therefore clothes that we obtain through a donation, purchase in a thrift store or from a clothing counter for example and which have already belonged to another person.

Recycled clothing

recycled clothing

Recycled clothing can have several different characteristics. This can come, for example, from the transformation of an already existing garment. That is to say, either repairs have been made or the textiles from different garments are recovered to make completely different new ones.

In the category of recycled clothing, we can also consider clothing that comes from banknotes (remaining from other confections) and ends of rolls that would not have been used otherwise and which would have found their way to the landfill.

Vegan clothing

Here we are referring to clothing that does not contain any animal traces. This means, for example, that it does not contain wool, silk, etc. The fact that a textile is in the vegan category does not mean that it is based on vegetable fiber. Polyester, having no animal traces , is considered a vegan fiber.

Biodegradable clothing

Biodegradable clothing is that which can be put directly in the compost at the end of its life. It is a garment that comes from a natural fiber such as linen, hemp and cotton. It will degrade quickly unlike clothing made with a synthetic fiber which can take up to 1000 years to decompose.

Ethical clothing

ethical clothing

Here, we are particularly talking about the working conditions that prevail during the design of the fabric and this in all its phases, from the cultivation or extraction of its raw material to the final result in the form of clothing. We will look for clothes made by adults whose working conditions are healthy, whose hours worked and salaries are reasonable...

Local clothing

Other than recycled fibers, fibers are not grown or extracted locally in Canada . They are mainly imported from Asia, the United States and others. However, some designers favor textiles spun, woven and dyed here.

For a garment to be considered locally made, the entire process: drawing, cutting, sewing must simply be carried out here. This ensures a better ethical and ecological aspect.

Closed loop

A textile designed in a closed loop means that the process does not create any release into the environment. This is the case, for example, of Lyocel which, in its manufacturing process, does not release any water or dyes into the environments adjacent to their design factories. It is also a fabric that will have no loss of raw material or fiber.

Ecologically yours,


eco loco


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